6 Tips for Buying a Mattress (and Sleeping Well)

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Consider the importance and value of a good night's sleep (beyond the price tag) when you are looking for a new mattress. Your back will thank you.

A 2011 study by the British Chiropractic Association (BCA) reports that 41% of women and 36% of men claimed their back pain was caused by a poor night's sleep. The pain can often be attributed to the firmness, size, or the offered back support of the mattress. If you've ever woken up with a sore neck or back, you may want to evaluate the quality of your mattress. Your mattress can play an important role in maintaining your MSK health. Here are a few tips to consider when making a purchase.

Tips For Buying A Matresses

When to replace your mattress
Waking up from slumber with a sore back on repeated occasions can be a sign that it is time to switch to a newer mattress. Typically, it is said that after 10 years, the bed will begin to deteriorate, which is the best time to consider buying a new one.

What size do I need?
Mattress size depends on the number and size of people sleeping on the bed; therefore, consider the following1,2:

  1. Buy a mattress that provides the proper support for your entire body and promotes good posture.
  2. The sleeper's spine should lay parallel and not sag in any area because the bed is too soft, or bow because the bed is too hard.
  3. The mattress should be six inches longer than the tallest person sleeping in the bed.
  4. The width of the bed should allow enough space for the person's pillow and even for a person to put their hands behind their head without their elbows touching any other person sleeping.
  5. If the person is a restless sleeper, it is recommended that the bed be wider to accommodate some tossing and turning.
  6. Take time to try out the bed before you buy and see if it's right for you.

There are many options to consider when it comes to purchasing a mattress. Make sure to take the time to explore and do your research, especially if you are looking for specific features to meet your needs. A good night's rest is important for your MSK health and ensures you can continue doing your daily activities. Consider these tips for your next mattress—your back depends on it! Want more information on sleep posture? Check out or video, or visit our clinic in North York.

1 British Chiropractic Association, Mind Your Posture When Buying a Bed, http://www.chiropractic-uk.co.uk/gfx/uploads/member%20area/New%20posture%20sheets/Mind%20your%20posture%20-%20buying%20a%20bed%20-%20sleep.pdf
2 Utah State University, Selecting a Comfortable Mattress, http://www.sleep-mart.com/utah.pdf
Canadian Chiropractic Association https://www.chiropractic.ca/blog/6-tips-for-buying-a-mattress-and-sleeping-well/

Dr. Joel Weisberg is the Clinic Director and Principal Doctor at Downsview Chiropractic The difference it makes to a patient when they learn, receive appropriate care, and are empowered to self-manage, is often bigger than the relief they were seeking. Dr. Weisberg is driven to make that difference to people in their pursuit of a life lived well.