Which Type of Mattress is Best? Sleep Number, Tempur-Pedic, Soft, Firm?

As a chiropractor I get lots of questions about what type of mattress is best.  Let me share a few tips with you on how to select the right mattress for you.

When initially lying on a mattress,  most people like the feel of a really soft mattress.  However, the same soft, cuddly mattress that you were convinced you were in love with when you went to bed can suddenly be your worst enemy when you wake up!

On the other hand, a really firm mattress doesn’t feel so soft and cuddly at first, but typically leaves you feeling pretty good in the morning… at least if you didn’t sleep on your side.


You side sleepers tend to need a bit more forgiving mattress that doesn’t much excess pressure on your shoulders or hips.

As you can see, the answer to whether or not one should choose a softer or firmer mattress is… it depends.  (Isn’t that the answer to practically EVERY question?!)

Contrary to popular belief, there is no single best answer as for what type of mattress to choose.  Different people tend to better with different types of mattresses.  Some do better with a really firm mattress, while others need something a little more forgiving.  But it is pretty safe to say that you should avoid a mattress that is excessively soft.

Speaking of how different people do better with different types of mattresses, that largely explains the popularity of the Sleep Number mattress which allows each side of the bed to be adjusted to a different level of firmness… or “Sleep Number” as they call it.  This ability to quickly and easily adjust the firmness of the Sleep Number mattress (made by Select Comfort) seems to be VERY popular among its many raving fans.sleep number mattress

Overall, I hear GREAT things about both Sleep Number and Tempur-Pedic mattresses.  If you’re in the market for a new mattress, I don’t think you could go wrong with either choice.  Or you could do like one of my patients, get a Sleep Number mattress and a Tempur-Pedic mattress pad.  She absolutely RAVES about it!

Personally, I use a Tempur-Pedic mattress pad with a pretty standard mattress. But next time I’ll be buying a Sleep Number mattress.

When shopping for a new mattress, I would recommend either having the option to return the mattress after trying it for a few nights, or sleeping at least a night or two on a mattress that is comparable to the one you are considering purchasing.  This will dramatically reduce your risk of having buyer’ s remorse.  After all, being stuck with a mattress that’s either 1) so hard that you can’t get comfortable enough to fall or stay asleep or 2) so soft you wake up with aches and pains is NOT something that you want to have happen!

Hopefully these tips will help you to choose the right type of mattress and level of firmness for you.

Here’s to a good night’s sleep!

Dr Clay