Not only is mattress firmness a matter of personal comfort, but also it’s a crucial factor when it comes to the spinal support provided by a mattress. Selecting a mattress with the proper level of firmness is key to getting a great night’s sleep and preventing long-term back pain. But how do you know if a mattress is firm – or soft – enough for you? While descriptors like “plush,” “memory foam,” and “supportive” can be subjective, all mattress vendors typically have one thing in common: the mattress firmness scale, a universal method to assess mattress firmness. Find out where you fall on the scale.
Mattress Firmness Scale
Extra Soft (1–2) and Soft (3–4)
Mattresses between one and four on the firmness scale are typically extremely soft. Mattresses between one and two on the scale are often pillowy with deep sinkage, resulting in a stark lack of spinal support. Extra soft mattresses are a matter of personal comfort; however, we don’t typically recommend them as a viable source of long-term spinal support. Mattresses between three and four on the scale are classified as plush mattresses, which usually have up to about three inches of sinkage. Plush mattresses, often made of deep contour memory foam, are a great pick for side sleepers, but they don’t offer enough support for back or stomach sleepers.
Medium Firmness (5–6)
Not sure which level of mattress firmness you prefer? A medium-balanced mattress is probably a safe bet. The most popular mattresses on the market typically fall in this range, offering enough support for about 80 percent of customers. Mattresses that fall into the medium range are a reliable choice for all types of sleepers, whether you prefer to sleep on your back, side, or stomach. These mattresses are also a good option for combination sleepers who frequently switch positions while sleeping and need a range of support. Unlike a softer mattress, mattresses that fall into the medium range typically offer noticeable bounce, which adds to their universal comfort.
If you’re looking for a higher level of support, you may want to try a firm mattress. Firm mattresses fall between seven and ten on the mattress firmness scale. These mattresses provide the most support available on today’s market, although it’s worth noting that very few mattresses reach the highest firmness rating. With these beds, you won’t experience any sinkage. That effect is due to the fact that firm mattresses are composed of several comfort layers, as well as a firm support core. The support core may be uncomfortable for side sleepers who need a bit more cushion; however, it can be a game-changer for people who suffer from regular back pain. Extremely firm mattresses also improve airflow, helping to keep you cool as you sleep.
So, how do you determine which mattress is right for you? By understanding your sleep needs – including sleep position and any back pain – your local mattress store associates will be able to place you somewhere on the mattress firmness scale. From there, you’ll have a much easier time narrowing down the kinds of mattresses that will best suit your needs.
Are you looking for a new mattress? Visit Beautyrest Sleep Gallery. At our locations in Springfield and Branson, Missouri, we provide an extensive selection of top-quality mattresses, including Beautyrest®, Serta iComfort®, Tempur-Pedic®, and Scandinavian Sleep Systems. A family-owned and -operated business that supports local charities, Beautyrest Sleep Gallery offers free local delivery and setup as well as a Best Price Guarantee. Shopping for a new mattress can be overwhelming, but with our wide variety of mattresses and expert sales staff, we can put your worries to rest. To get started, please visit us in store or explore our mattress selection online.