New mattress back pain is not an oxymoron. Sometimes we do develop back pain when we get a new mattress, or we find that the new mattress doesn’t solve the back pain we already had. Here are a few tips, tricks and other solutions for dealing with new mattress back pain.
Wait Long Enough
If you’ve bought a new mattress for the support, it is possible you’ll wake up with discomfort because you’re finally getting the support you need. This is similar to the aches and pains you feel when you start a workout routine. So give it at least 2 weeks before you give up. That time frame starts when the mattress has been fully decompressed, and that can take a couple of days if you have a memory foam bed. If you try to sleep on a memory foam bed before its decompressed, it will be uncomfortable.
However, if you’re dealing with new pain or worsened chronic pain, it is possible you bought a bed that doesn’t have enough support for you. And that may need to be addressed by getting a different mattress.
Check the Setup
Do you have a new air mattress? If you’re a side sleeper, it needs to be firmer than if you’re a back sleeper. If this is an air mattress, increase the air mattress’ pressure.
Check the positioning of the mattress. Most mattresses today have a sleep surface on top and a bottom. If you’re not sleeping on the “sleep surface”, you’re sleeping on the hard layer. And this will be uncomfortable.
You should also check the bed frame itself. If the bed frame doesn’t have enough supports under the center of the bed, it will sag and fail to give you enough support. This is true whether the wooden slats aren’t all in place or you failed to flip down steel legs that support the center of the bed while assembling the exterior of the bed frame.
And don’t forget the fact that a new mattress on a lumpy foundation is still going to be uncomfortable.
Check the Layers You’re Using
One possible cause of back pain on a new mattress is everything from the old bed you’ve ported to the new bed. For example, your neck pillow or contoured leg pillows may have made sleeping in your old, sagging bed more bearable, but using them in a new bed with the right degree of firmness now puts your body out of alignment.
The same is true for moving a supportive foam mattress topper from the old bed to a new bed selected for the right level of firmness; the dense memory foam on top of the new mattress is too firm. A lumpy mattress topper, too, will be uncomfortable even on a new mattress.
You can experience similar problems if you’ve been piling your bed with blankets and sheets to create a de facto soft mattress topper. Try removing some of the thick bed spreads and other layers that may prevent your body from receiving the full support the mattress provides.