Even with my experience of back surgery and treating people with back pain, I find buying a mattress quite difficult and eye-wateringly expensive.  Having said all that, a mattress is an investment and having a little knowledge beforehand can make all the difference between a successful and disastrous purchase.  A mattress should be changed after 8 – 10 years of use.

When purchasing a mattress don’t rush and follow these simple rules:

  1. Be sure the mattress isn’t too heavy for you to turn or better still, buy one that needs no turning
  2. Don’t automatically choose an “orthopaedic” mattress, they are usually incredibly expensive and from my own experience a quality non-orthopaedic mattress is just as good
  3. The mattress should be firm enough to support your weight without sagging and make sure you lay on it for at least 20 minutes in your usual lying position
  4. Even though it should be supportive, a mattress should also have sufficient ‘give’ to support and cushion your body’s bony curves. A pocket sprung mattress
  5. Consider non-allergic bedding materials or even bamboo bedding which “wicks” the sweat away from your body which for menopausal women who suffer night sweats can be valuable
  6. Go for a mattress that is porous and with a base that has air holes if it is a divan or go for a slatted base to allow for air circulation. Again for menopausal women suffering from night sweats this is a good way to try and stay cool
  7. Remember if you are likely to move house frequently, make sure your base can be dismantled easily so you don’t injury your back doing so
  8. A good quality mattress that has to support two heavy adults needs to have a substantial base to make sure it is less likely to collapse
  9. I suggest to all my patients that if you have to share a bed and especially if you are menopausal, you should choose at least a large double bed (Queen or king size) if you can, go for a super king as it gives you plenty of room to move around
  10. Many people like waterbeds but some people find them difficult to relax on so try properly before you buy. They often have an internal heating facility, which if you suffer from night sweats could make it very uncomfortable and disrupting for menopausal women.  They can also be quite difficult to get in and out of, which if you have back pain and aches and pains you might not be able to get up and about
  11. There are no right or wrongs when choosing a mattress/bed, use the tips above to help you choose one that is best for you. If you are of average weight and need a supportive mattress, such as a medium pocket sprung one and your partner needs a firmer one, it might be best to choose a bed made up of two different mattresses that zips up the middle
  12. If you can try each mattress for 20 minutes to make sure you are really comfortable.

Hope you found this information of help and interest.