What is an Orthopaedic Mattress? [2024 Guide]

What is an Orthopaedic Mattress?

What is an Orthopaedic Mattress?

An Orthopaedic mattress is a mattress specifically designed to support the joints, back and overall body.

Its creation was influenced by the medical study of orthopaedics, which focuses on disorders of the spine and joints.

As medical research and the understanding of bone and joint function advanced in the 1950’s, mattress manufacturers identified an opportunity to improve their products to cater to the needs of those with issues in this area.



Orthopaedic mattresses are generally regarded as the best mattress for a bad back as they aim to ease the discomfort experienced by those who suffer from back pain or aching joints by providing a firm, but comfortable mattress which provides targeted support.

As a detailed extension to our Mattress Buying Guide, we look at some of the key features of the orthopaedic mattress.

What are the benefits of an orthopaedic mattress?

1) Firm support

The firm nature of an orthopaedic mattress means provides a strong base of support for the whole body.

2) Even weight distribution

An orthopaedic mattress provides even distribution of body weight which helps to prevent a pressure build up on key pain areas including the neck, back and hips.

3) Spinal support and alignment

Orthopaedic mattresses ensure correct spinal alignment, helping to reduce stress on the spine, alleviating back pain.

4) Promotes good posture

An orthopaedic mattress provides a firm foundation, ensuring you adopt the correct posture as you sleep, which promotes healthy blood circulation as you sleep.


  • Provides firm support and spinal alignment, reducing stress on joints
  • Even weight distribution for a more comfortable night’s sleep


  • An orthopaedic mattress may be too firm for some people’s taste
  • Pricey, but worth the investment for those who can benefit from pressure relief for aches and pains


Orthopaedic Mattress FAQs

How is an orthopaedic mattress different from a regular mattress?

Orthopaedic mattresses tend to be firmer than regular mattresses, as they are designed to provide more support and reduce pressure on certain areas of the body.

Is an orthopaedic mattress suitable for all types of sleepers?

Orthopaedic mattresses are generally suitable for all types of sleepers, as they are designed to provide support and proper spinal alignment for all body types. However, it is important to consider your personal preferences and comfort level when choosing a mattress. 

How long does an orthopaedic mattress last?

The lifespan of an orthopaedic mattress will depend on the specific product and the manufacturer's warranty. In general, a good quality orthopaedic mattress should last for 7-10 years with proper care.

Can I use a mattress protector on an orthopaedic mattress?

Yes, you can use a mattress protector on an orthopaedic mattress. These products can help protect the mattress from spills, stains, and wear and tear, thereby extending the lifespan of the mattress.

How do I maintain an orthopaedic mattress?

When cleaning an orthopaedic mattress, it is important to follow the manufacturer's recommendations for cleaning and maintenance. This may include using a mattress protector, vacuuming the surface of the mattress regularly, and spot cleaning any spills or stains. It is also important to avoid jumping or standing on the mattress, as this can damage the internal support layers.


An orthopaedic mattress offers great support and comfort, which can help reduce aches and pains.  The firm surface of an orthopaedic mattress provides pressure relief and posture alignment making this the ideal mattress type for those who suffer from back or joint pain, but an equally great mattress for those who like a firm and supportive mattress.

Brian McCann

Our Managing Director Brian's expertise in crafting comfortable sleep experiences makes him a reliable voice for all things bedding-related. Brian publishes advice and tips on mattresses, beds and the overall sleep experience based on extensive industry experience.

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