how to know if your mattress is causing back pain

How to Know if Your Mattress is Causing Back Pain


Written By: Michal Szlas - Founder and CEO of Otty Sleep


Are you waking up with a sore back, feeling more tired than when you hit the hay?

If so, your mattress might be the culprit. It's a common misconception that a soft, plush mattress is the key to a good night's sleep.

However, the truth is, the right mattress for you should provide the perfect balance of comfort and support, keeping your spine in a neutral position throughout the night, and supporting your joints. Choosing the right mattress can be a daunting task, with a myriad of options available.

In this blog we will guide you through the process, helping you understand the connection between your mattress and back pain, and how to pick the right mattress to avoid discomfort.

Whether you're a side sleeper, a back sleeper, or a restless toss-and-turner, we'll help you find the right support for your sleeping position.

So, let's dive in and start the journey towards a good sleep and a pain-free morning.

Can a Mattress Cause Back Pain?

Yes, a poor quality or unsuitable mattress can cause you back pain, especially if you already suffer from a bad back or spinal issues.

The connection between your mattress and back pain might not be immediately apparent.

However, the type of mattress you sleep on can significantly impact your spinal health and overall comfort. 

Understanding this connection is crucial, as it can guide you in making informed decisions about your sleeping environment, ultimately leading to better sleep and improved wellbeing.

The Role of Your Mattress in Back Health

Your mattress plays a pivotal role in maintaining your back health. 

It's not just about comfort, but also about providing the right support to your spine and joints during the long hours of sleep. A good mattress ensures proper spinal alignment, which is crucial to avoid back pain.

On the other hand, a poor-quality mattress can cause your body to rest in unnatural positions, leading to poor spinal alignment. This can put undue pressure on your spine, resulting in discomfort and pain.

Many people underestimate the importance of a good mattress in ensuring a good sleep and maintaining back health. However, the connection between the two is undeniable. A mattress that offers both comfort and support can significantly reduce the risk of developing back pain.

At OTTY, we only manufacture medium-firm and firm hybrid mattresses, as we believe they are optimal for providing the right support for your spine and joints, while also offering all the comfort benefits of memory foam. Our mattress comparison gives you more insight into which mattress is right for you.

How an Old Mattress Can Lead to Back Pain

An old mattress can be a silent culprit behind persistent back pain. It's not just about comfort, but also about the support it provides to your spine.

A mattress that's too soft or too firm can disrupt the natural alignment of your spine, leading to discomfort and pain.

When a mattress fails to provide adequate support, it can cause your body to rest in unnatural positions. This can put undue pressure on your spine and other pressure points, leading to poor spinal alignment and, ultimately, back pain.

Many people overlook the role of their mattress in maintaining back health. However, investing in a good mattress that supports your sleeping position and promotes good spinal alignment can be a significant step towards avoiding back pain and ensuring a good sleep.

How to Tell if Your Mattress is Causing Back Pain

Identifying the root cause of back pain can be a complex task. However, your mattress might be a crucial culprit, contributing to your discomfort. This section will guide you on how to discern if your mattress is causing your back pain.

Understanding the signs and knowing when to seek professional help can make a significant difference in managing and potentially alleviating your back pain. Let's delve into the details.

Signs Your Mattress May Be the Culprit

You wake up with consistent back pain 

If you're regularly waking up with a sore back, it's a clear sign that your mattress might be the problem. This is especially true if the pain subsides after you've been up and moving around for a while.

You sleep better elsewhere

If you find that you sleep better and wake up without pain when you're not in your own bed, it's a strong indication that your mattress is causing your discomfort.

Your mattress is old

Most mattresses have a lifespan of 7-10 years. If yours is older than this, it's likely not providing the support your body needs for a good night's sleep. This is in addition to a myriad of health issues it could be causing due to its age. You can read more about it, in our article about how often you should change your mattress.

You're uncomfortable in bed

If you're tossing and turning all night trying to get comfortable, your mattress might not be providing the right level of comfort and support.

Your mattress is sagging or lumpy

Over time, mattresses can develop lumps and sags. These can cause your body to sink into the mattress in an unnatural way, leading to poor spinal alignment and back pain.

When to Seek Professional Help

Many people tend to ignore the signs that their mattress may be causing their low back pain, but it's crucial to address this issue promptly.

If you've made changes to your sleep environment, such as investing in a good mattress or adjusting your sleeping position, but your back pain persists, it's time to seek professional help.

Don't hesitate to see your GP or a physio, to understand if there is anything you can do to improve your back pain.

Choosing the Right Mattress to Avoid Back Pain

Choosing the right mattress can be a game-changer in your quest to avoid back pain. It's not just about comfort, but also about ensuring proper spinal alignment and support. Many people underestimate the role a good mattress plays in maintaining a healthy back and ensuring a good night's sleep.

In this section, we'll delve into how to select the right mattress to alleviate back pain, focusing on key factors to consider and the best mattresses for back pain relief. Let's get started.

Factors to Consider When Mattress Shopping

When shopping for a mattress to avoid back pain, there are several factors you should consider:


The quality of materials used in a mattress can greatly affect its durability and comfort. Look for mattresses made from high-quality materials like steel springs or high density memory foam. These materials offer excellent support and pressure relief, which can help alleviate back pain.


A good mattress should provide adequate support to your spine, allowing your muscles to relax and your joints to decompress. This is particularly important if you're a back sleeper or suffer from mid or lower back pain.

Pressure Relief

If you're a side sleeper or suffer from shoulder or hip pain, a mattress that offers good pressure relief is essential. Memory foam and hybrid mattresses are particularly good at contouring to your body and relieving pressure on your joints.

The right mattress can make a significant difference in your sleep quality and help you avoid back pain. So, take your time and make an informed decision.

The Best Mattresses for Back Pain

OTTY Original Hybrid Mattress

This mattress is known for its long encapsulated springs which provide continuous unparalleled support for the spine and joints throughout the mattress. It's designed to help give you perfect spinal alignment, which is crucial for avoiding back pain.

OTTY Aura Hybrid Mattress

This mattress offers a seriously comfortable sleep at a very affordable price. It's a great choice for those who want to say goodbye to nighttime back pain without breaking the bank.

OTTY Pure Hybrid Mattress

This is OTTY's most popular mattress, engineered for cool, comfortable sleep. Including bamboo & charcoal infused memory foam, up to 2000 encapsulated pocket springs and a unique air flow system, it's a fantastic option for those who tend to get hot during the night and need a mattress that can help regulate their body temperature, while still ensuring proper spinal alignment and support.

OTTY Pure+ Hybrid Mattress

This plush mattress is also supremely supportive, making it a good choice for those who want a soft, comfortable mattress that doesn't compromise on support. It's our most luxurious mattress with up to 4000 pocket springs.

OTTY Firm Mattress

This is OTTY's most supportive mattress, combining foam and springs for added lift and edge support. It's a double-sided mattress which extends its lifespan, as well as providing 2 different comfort levels. It's a great choice for those who need a bit more support to maintain proper spinal alignment and avoid back pain.

Additional Tips for a Good Sleep Without Back Pain

In our quest for a good night's sleep, we often overlook the importance of the right mattress. However, it's not just about the mattress. There are other factors at play that can significantly impact our sleep quality and, consequently, our back health. This section will delve into additional tips that can help you achieve a good sleep without back pain.

From improving your sleep hygiene to incorporating specific exercises and stretches, these tips aim to provide a holistic approach to combating back pain. So, let's dive in and explore these tips in detail.

Improving Your Sleep Hygiene

Improving your sleep hygiene is a crucial step towards alleviating back pain. It's not just about having the right mattress, but also about maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and creating a restful environment. Many people overlook the importance of a good sleeping position, which can significantly impact spinal alignment.

A poor sleeping position can cause your body to be in a state of constant tension, leading to low back pain. Therefore, it's essential to find a position that provides both comfort and support.

Remember, a good sleep routine is not just about the hours you sleep, but the quality of that sleep.

When to Replace Your Mattress

It's not always immediately obvious that your mattress need replacing, but there are many telltale signs. Our guide on how often you should change your mattress gives you all the information you need about when to replace your mattress.

Final Thoughts on Identifying and Addressing Mattress-Related Back Pain

Identifying whether your mattress is the cause of your back pain is crucial.

A good mattress should provide the right support and comfort, maintaining a neutral position for your spine. If you're experiencing persistent back pain, it's worth considering if your current mattress is the reason behind your discomfort.

Choosing the right mattress can significantly improve your sleep quality and alleviate back pain. A medium-firm mattress, for instance, has been found to reduce lower back pain effectively. However, everyone's needs are different, and it's essential to find the right mattress that suits your sleeping position and comfort preferences.

Lastly, don't underestimate the importance of good sleep hygiene and regular exercises to maintain a healthy back. If your back pain persists, it may be time to consult a sleep expert or a chiropractor. Remember, your health is paramount, and a good night's sleep is a significant part of it.

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