As we age and our bodies change, the products we use evolve with us—the types of shoes we wear, the eyewear we need, the brand of moisturizer we use. So why wouldn’t the type of mattress we sleep on evolve as our bodies adapt with age?
It’s no secret that as we grow older our bodies become prone to physical ailments such as joint pain, arthritis, and osteoporosis—all of which present challenges when it comes to getting comfortable enough to fall asleep. Not to mention, our sleep patterns and circadian rhythms change with age, making it more difficult for seniors to fall and stay asleep. Although there are a number factors impacting sleep that are out of one’s control, there are ways to help alleviate troubled sleeping patterns in old age. One of which is choosing the best mattress for your life stage.
Dr. Scott Bautch, President of the American Chiropractic Association, says he considers a mattress to be one of the most important healthcare products one can buy. In his 30 years of experience, having seen over 25,000 patients, he says at least 50% of patients have not received guidance on how to choose the best mattress for their body type and sleeping needs.
To be clear, there is no one mattress that is “one size fits all.” Every senior has a unique body type and sleeping style. However, it is helpful for them to understand where to begin when it comes to finding the right mattress to support them in their old age.
3 Important Qualities Seniors Should
Look For in a Mattress
importantly, seniors need a mattress that provides sufficient support. Support
does not equate to firmness. There are plenty of medium-soft mattresses on the
market that provide adequate support without feeling like your sleeping on a
plank. When it comes to a finding a supportive mattress, look for these three
Provides Proper Spine Alignment
just means how well a mattress keeps your spine in a neutral alignment. A
mattress that sinks in the middle can ‘hammock’ a person which aggravates
issues of low back pain.
Relieves pressure in their joints,
especially the shoulders and hips.
shopping for a mattress, you’ll want to pay attention to its pressure relieving
abilities, especially if you regularly suffer from joint pain. Although your
mattress will never contribute to 100% of the problem when it comes to joint
pain, without proper pressure relief, it
can worsen the condition. The shoulders, hips and thighs are areas most prone
to high pressure, so beware side sleepers!
Provides sufficient edge support
It’s no secret that falls pose a huge threat to seniors, and you don’t want a mattress to increase your risk of a fall. Edge support is what prevents you from rolling off the side of the mattress in the middle of the night. It also what helps you feel safe and secure while sitting on the edge of the bed. A mattress with poor edge support will make it difficult for seniors to climb in and out of bed, as they may experience a “sinking” feeling, especially when trying to get out of bed. Rather, a strong edge will help propel them off the edge.
Seniors need and deserve to get the good night’s sleep. While a mattress won’t solve all sleep challenges, it is the performance tool that gives you the best shot at a good night’s sleep consistently.