Back pain can affect anyone. It's one of the most frequent medical complaints. Having a mattress topper that worsens back pain or does not provide any relief adds to the frustration.
Finding a supportive mattress topper may make all the difference in helping you get a good night’s sleep.
In this article, we explore the top five mattress toppers that assist in relieving back pain. We discuss what types of things to look for when purchasing a mattress topper and compile all this information so you can make an informed decision.
Best mattress topper for back pain: shortlist
- Lift by Amerisleep – best mattress topper for side sleepers with lower back pain
- Nolah – best overall mattress topper
- Plush Beds – best cooling mattress topper for back pain
- Leesa – best budget-friendly mattress topper
- Latex for Less – best firm mattress pad for back pain
Criteria we follow for choosing the best mattress topper for back pain
|Fill material||High-quality and supportive materials|
|Price||Reasonable prices that match the quality|
|Firmness||Preferred medium firmness|
|Thickness||Preferred medium thickness|
|Reviews||Took customer reviews into account|
- Fill material. The material of the topper determines its durability, comfort, and how well it will provide support. Some materials trap heat, while others are more breathable.
- Price. We considered the cost of each topper compared to its quality and features.
- Firmness. We discuss how each mattress topper varies in firmness level.
- Thickness. The thickness may impact the pressure relief and contouring of the topper.
- Reviews. We looked into the opinions and experiences of real customers to gauge the overall satisfaction of each mattress topper.
Best mattress topper for back pain: an overview
Your bed should be a place where your body can rest. If you are living with back discomfort, you know the importance of giving your back a supportive surface while you sleep.
Here, we have compiled a list of the five best mattress toppers for back pain.
1. Lift by Amerisleep Mattress Topper
The Lift by Amerisleep Mattress Topper offers two firmness options. The Comfort option, made with BioPure material, is good for side or combo sleepers who need extra cushion. The Support option, made with Affinity material, provides extra support for back and stomach sleepers.
Both topper options come with HIVE technology, which reduces pressure points by creating hexagons that vary in density and give you support where you need it most.
The toppers have an ultra-breathable cover to help keep you cool at night. The cover is removable with a zipper, making it easy to clean your mattress topper.
Customer reviews are overwhelmingly positive, with 4.5 out of 5 stars satisfaction.
The current promo price for a queen-size topper is $321.75 (previously $429), and free shipping is available in 48 states.
2. Nolah Mattress Topper
The Nolah Mattress Topper is a firm mattress pad made from premium AirFoam technology. A polyfoam blend that keeps you supported and cool while you sleep. The cover is soft and breathable organic cotton. Elastic bands in the corners help hold the topper in place.
Customer reviews give the mattress topper 4.9 out of 5 stars.
The current price for a queen-size topper is $292 (previously $449). The company offers monthly payments as an option and free shipping.
3. Plush Beds Cooling Gel Mattress Topper
The Plush Beds Cooling Gel Mattress Topper is made from their patented memory foam design and infused with a cooling gel. This blend offers a medium to firm and soft but supportive surface to sleep on.
They offer two thickness options. The 2-inch option is best for people with lower body weight, while the 3-inch option is ideal for heavier people and is one of the best firm mattress toppers for back pain.
The topper does not have a cover, but it does offer an organic cotton cover as an add-on. Without the cover, they advise spot-cleaning the topper with a mild detergent.
Customers give this topper a 4.9 out of 5-star rating.
The current price for a 2-inch queen-size topper is $346.00 (previously $461), with the option of making monthly payments.
4. Leesa Mattress Topper
The Leesa Mattress Topper is made with a breathable Cool-Knit Cover made from 87% polyester and 13% viscose. The inside of the topper is two inches of CertiPUR-US® Certified contouring memory foam that supports any sleeping position.
This topper is great for people who want to enhance their mattress or add an extra layer of protection. Those who live in colder climates may appreciate the added warmth it provides.
They suggest spot-cleaning the topper with a mild detergent or simply airing it out.
Customers give this mattress topper a 4.6 out of 5-star rating.
The current price for the queen-size mattress topper is $239 (previously $299). The company offers free shipping and a limited 1-year warranty.
5. Latex for Less Natural Latex Mattress Topper
The Latex for Less Natural Latex Mattress Topper is another one of the best mattress toppers for bad backs. It's made from organic latex and offers soft, medium, or medium-firm levels. These options make this topper suitable for a wide range of sleepers, whether you’d like to soften a firm mattress for back discomfort or add more support to a soft mattress.
The topper comes in 2-inches or 3-inches in height, which allows you to tailor the it to your preference.
An option organic cotton cover is available for purchase. The topper and organic cover are naturally hypoallergenic, making this an excellent option for people with allergies.
Customers give this mattress topper a 4.9 out of 5-star rating.
The current price for the 2-inch queen-sized mattress topper is $269 (previously $471). The company offers free shipping in 48 states with a limited 5-year warranty.
Comparing the best mattress toppers for side sleepers
|Product||*Price of queen size with a discount||Refund policy||Thickness||Firmness||Warranty|
|Lift by Amerisleep Mattress Topper||$239||30-day trial||2-inches||Medium||1-year|
|Nolah Mattress Topper||$292||Ability to request a refund within 30 days||2-inches||Plush optionLuxury Firmness option||10-year|
|Plush Beds Cooling Gel Mattress Topper||$346.00||No refunds available||2 or 3-inch options||Medium to firm||5-year|
|Leesa Mattress Topper||$239||30-day trial||2-inches||Medium||1-year|
|Latex for Less Natural Latex Mattress Topper||$269||No refunds||2 or 3-inch options||Soft, medium, or medium-firm options||5-year|
*Prices vary according to topper dimensions
What to look for when choosing a mattress pad
When looking for the best mattress pad for back discomfort, there are several factors to consider.
The position you choose to sleep at night determines the type of support and firmness level you need.
Side sleepers tend to need a slightly softer surface that allows their hips and shoulders to sink in. However, a too-soft surface may let the shoulders and hips sink too much, which may cause pain. A mattress topper specifically designed for side sleepers may provide the necessary support for the body while ensuring comfort in the hip and shoulder areas.
Back sleepers generally need a slightly firmer surface that helps their spine stay in a neutral alignment. People who sleep on their back may need a firmer or thinner mattress topper.
Stomach sleepers usually need a firm surface that prevents their lower back from sinking in. A thinner and firmer mattress topper may be the best support for stomach sleepers.
How firm you want your mattress topper to be will depend on your main sleep position and how firm or soft your mattress is.
People with back discomfort usually benefit from sleeping on a medium-firm surface. If your current mattress is soft, you may benefit from getting a firmer mattress topper. On the other hand, if your mattress is too firm, you may need to get a mattress topper that offers some cushion.
Your body weight can also be a consideration. Heavier people may sink more into a soft mattress and not get adequate support.
Trial and error policy
It can take several nights of sleeping on a mattress topper to determine if it is the right option for you. When looking for a mattress topper, try to find one that gives you time to try it.
Some companies offer return options within a certain time frame. Be sure you understand the terms and conditions for the return and keep your mattress topper protected from wear and tear.
Unfortunately, many companies consider mattress toppers “bedding” and do not allow for returns.
When picking your mattress topper, it is important to think about how the topper may affect your sleeping temperature.
If you tend to get hot while you sleep, a mattress topper with temperature control features, such as cooling gel or breathable materials, may help your body regulate its temperature more easily throughout the night. This can help prevent tossing and turning or waking up with night sweats.
If you tend to get cold while you sleep or live in a cold climate, having a mattress topper that helps trap heat may help you sleep more comfortably. Consider a memory foam mattress that cradles you and provides warmth.
The typical mattress topper is somewhere between 1 to 4 inches thick. In general, the thicker the topper, the more cushioning it will provide. Thinner toppers may give more firm support.
If you are looking for mattress pads for back discomfort, avoid either extreme of thickness and look for moderate thickness.
You also need to consider your current mattress. If your mattress already has a high profile, adding several more inches may make getting in and out of bed difficult.
If your mattress is already very firm and you need more support for pressure points, or if you are heavier, a mattress topper that adds a little extra thickness may be preferred.
Possible causes of back pain
Back pain is a common medical complaint.
Back pain can result from problems with the mechanics or structure of the spine. This may include sprains, degeneration, disc issues, congenital conditions, or other causes.
Inflammation and other spine conditions, such as osteoporosis, can cause back pain.
Sleeping on an old or poor-quality mattress may exacerbate an existing condition in your back. Sleep is supposed to be a time when your body can heal and regenerate itself. However, if your mattress is sagging or too firm, your body may strain while sleeping.
Finding a mattress topper that provides proper support may help some people find relief from nagging back pain.
Sometimes, back pain is a sign of a serious problem that requires medical care. If you are experiencing persistent back pain, it is a good idea to inform your doctor.
A guide on mattress toppers materials
The type of material a mattress topper for a bad back is made of can determine its durability, ability to support, and comfort. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of four materials frequently found in mattress toppers.
- Memory foam. Memory foam molds gently around your body while you sleep. People with back discomfort may find that it offers support and relief. It also helps isolate motion so you may not notice when your partner changes position. One drawback is that memory foam tends to trap heat and may make you feel hot. Some memory foam toppers have added features such as gel to help mitigate this.
- Latex. Latex can be a natural or synthetic material that is durable, provides pressure relief, and is breathable. Mattress toppers made of latex are generally hypoallergenic and environmentally friendly. A drawback is that natural latex can be costly to produce. Some people are also allergic to latex.
- Feather. Feather mattress toppers are usually made from duck or goose feathers and provide a cushioned sleep surface. The toppers are generally lightweight, affordable, breathable, and great if you like a soft bed. However, they may flatten over time and not provide adequate support for back discomfort.
- Cooling. Some toppers are designed to help people who tend to sleep in a hot environment. These toppers may have gel or copper infused to help wick heat away. Some material designs include holes, like a matrix, to help with air circulation.
The best type of mattress topper for back pain: conclusion
Choosing a mattress topper for back pain is a personal decision based on a person’s specific needs and preferences. These factors may include sleeping position, preference of firmness, and budget. Each of the mattress toppers discussed in this article offers unique benefits to address these various elements.
Quality sleep is essential for your overall health. Investing in the right mattress topper may make a substantial difference in your sleep quality and overall well-being.
Find other products for your sleep
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What type of mattress topper to avoid for back pain?
Avoid mattress toppers that are soft or lack support, to help with back pain. These may exacerbate your back pain rather than provide relief.
How should I lay with lower back pain?
If you are struggling with back pain, try sleeping on your back with a small pillow under your knees. This position may help maintain the natural curve of your spin. You may also want to try sleeping on your side with a pillow between your knees to help take pressure off your lower back. A mattress topper for lower back pain will help you with this.
What level of firmness of mattress topper is best for back pain?
People with back pain tend to do best with a medium-firm sleeping surface. What type of mattress topper you need depends on your current mattress and the position you like to sleep in. Try to find a topper that gives you support while also providing comfort.
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- PLoS ONE. Examining relationships between sleep posture, waking spinal symptoms and quality of sleep: A cross sectional study.