A surprisingly small proportion of people sleep on their back (just 6.63% according to our 2020 ‘Big Irish Sleep Survey), despite the benefits it offers. Back sleeping keeps your spine aligned and relives pressure points, as well as reducing pressure on the heart.
The best type of mattress for back sleepers may vary depending on their body weight, height and personal preference. If you suffer from back pain, check out our dedicated guide to the best mattresses for a bad back.
Fortunately, for the back sleepers among us there are LOTS of options when it comes to mattresses!
Mattress Firmness For Back Sleepers
Sleeping on your back in a flat, straight position is believed to be one of the healthiest positions to sleep in, not only does it ensure continuity of spinal alignment, it also limits pressure on the body as a whole.
To ensure optimum relief on pressure points and a comfortable sleep for those who sleep on their back, a medium to firm mattress is best. This is to ensure even distribution and support for your body weight, combined with the comfort of the mattress you prefer.
Depending on your weight, a soft mattress may not offer the support required for the spine, as your body is more likely to sink into a soft mattress, disturbing the natural alignment of your spine and causing your back to arch, which may result in aches and pains. You can learn more about the different types or mattress and firmness levels in our Choosing The Best Mattress guide.
Mattresses For Back Sleepers: 4 Options
We recommend: DFI Sensation Pocket Sprung Mattress
Pocket sprung mattresses contain hundreds of individual springs, each sewn into its own pocket of fabric.
The advantage of this is that the springs within a pocket sprung mattress operate independently of one another, respond to your weight, shape, movement and sleeping position and providing effective weight distribution and support, which is ideal for those who sleep on their back as it promotes neutral spinal alignment.
Why is a pocket sprung mattress the best for back sleepers?
- Pocket sprung mattresses provide even distribution of weight and promotes neutral spinal alignment, perfect for the back sleeper
- Responsive to movement and shape
- Comes in a variety of firmness options
We believe a pocket sprung mattress e.g. DFI Sensation, is the best mattress type for the majority of back sleepers.
Option 2: Hybrid Mattress
If you sleep on your back and require a medium to firm mattress, but have a personal preference for a softer mattress then a hybrid mattress could be the solution.
Hybrid mattresses combine the firm support of a pocket sprung mattress, with the additional comfort of a softer memory foam or gel layer that is thick enough to provide comfort, without allowing you to sink too deeply into the mattress which would disrupt the alignment of your spine.
Why is an hybrid mattress good for back sleepers?
- Pocket sprung section provides a firm base of support for the mattress
- Even distribution of weight and support of the mid-section of the back
- Memory foam topping provides soft top layer and keeps spine in neutral alignment
- Provides pressure relief for back
Option 3: Orthopaedic Mattress
Orthopaedic mattresses are commonly recommended for those who suffer with back pain. Designed to support the joints, back and overall body, orthopaedic mattresses tend be on the firmer side, which also makes orthopaedic mattresses a great option for people who sleep on their back.
Why is an orthopaedic mattress good for back sleepers?
- Designed to evenly distribute body weight, specifically with support for the back in mind
- Firm base offers maximum support, alleviating pressure on the spine and relieving pressure points
Option 4: Memory Foam Mattress
In a memory foam mattress, the material reacts to pressure and heat, changing shape to fit the sleeper’s body.
For back sleepers, this means that once the sleeping position has been assumed, the memory foam will absorb the weight, contouring to the body shape and supporting the natural alignment of the spine.
Why is a memory foam mattress good for back sleepers?
- Memory foam changes shape to fit your body, offering firm, comfortable support throughout the night
- Memory foam contouring provides optimal spinal alignment
- Provides pressure relief for back and joints