Can the right mattress help with back pain? We review Simba, Nectar, Dormeo and Tempur mattresses

Best mattresses for back painBest mattresses for back pain
Best mattresses for back pain

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Chronic back pain can stop you sleeping - which can often make the pain worse. Here are the mattresses designed to help alleviate your back aches

If you have a bad back, then even just getting to bed can be a struggle - but once you have laid down it’s important that your mattress is giving you the support you need to be as comfortable as possible.

If you’re sleeping on a mattress which isn’t suitable then not only with you likely be tossing and turning for hours, unable to sleep, but the pain in your back will get even worse over time - which will then also make it hard to get up in the morning.

What kind of mattress should I be looking for?

If you suffer from back pain, you want a mattress that provides the ideal balance between comfort and support. In short, you want it soft enough to feel all snug, but solid enough so that you know you are secure.

All mattresses are given a firmness rating, from the super soft to the extra firm, and as a guide it’s recommended that people who suffer from back pain choose a mattress with a rating of somewhere between medium and firm.

That’s because a mattress which is too soft may not provide the support required for your spine to keep the pain at bay, but one that is too firm may also put too much pressure on your back and make the pain even worse.

The best way to tell which mattress works for you, of course, is to try it out for yourself. Luckily most top brands offer trial periods after purchase - so that means you can buy safe with the knowledge that if it’s not right for you then you can send it back for a refund.

It can take weeks to get used to a new mattress and decide whether or not it’s the one for you too, so this isn’t a decision to be rushed. Many mattresses mould to the shape of your body in time, so you’ll need to allow yourself a few nights of sleep before you make a judgement.

We’ve rounded up eight of the best mattresses to buy below if you are suffering from any kind of muscle tension or pain in your back.

For ease, all the prices we have included below are for double mattresses.

How else can I use my back pain?

First and foremost - if you have persistent back pain, please consult your doctor.

You may find that your pain is eased by sleeping in a certain position, for example on your side. Or, sleeping on your back with a pillow under your knees for extra support and alignment of the spine might work best for you.

It all depends on how you feel, and also where exactly the pain in your back is. There’s no quick fix for back pain, unfortunately, but getting the right mattress is a good place to start in terms of easing your pain over time.

Once you’ve got the mattress right, then you’ll want some new cosy bedding to give yourself the best possible sleep time experience. Check out our guide to the best duvets for winter for the must-have bedding of the season.

Sizes available: single, small double, double, king, super king

Mattress depth: 25cm

Trial period: 200 nights

Guarantee: 10 years

Free delivery

The Emma mattress - an award-winning, best-selling boxed mattress made in the UK, is a great option for people who want support, but still want a super soft, fluffy feel.

It’s doughy and soft, yet feels supportive on your frame thanks to the HRX foam - high resiliency foam, which is particularly durable, and offers different levels of density in different zones, the better to align with your spine and support it.

A firmness rating of 6-7 out of 10 makes Emma’s Original Mattress ideal for lower back pain - as we noted, medium-firm is the what you’re after.

It generally takes 2-4 hours for the Emma Original to fully inflate, though on occasion it can take up to 48 hours to expand completely.

A 200-night trial means you have the better part of a year to test if it will help with your aches and pains. If it doesn’t, you’re allowed to return it for a full refund, no questions asked.

It is worth noting that the Emma Premium Mattress is even better at offering back support, but rather more spendy - a double starts at £528. If you’ve got the money for, it offers additional layers of support, but for those with a more modest budget, the Emma Original is still a fabulous choice.

Sizes available: single, small double, double, king, super king

Mattress depth: 25cm

Trial period: 365 nights

Guarantee: Forever

The Nectar’s Memory Foam boxed mattress has a three layer foam construction, (two of viscoelastic foam and a base layer of support foam), and is designed to relieve pressure points and promote better spine alignment.

Although it’s promoted as ‘medium-firm’; we found it slightly firmer than other similarly billed mattresses. Those three layers help provide a comfortable night’s sleep - the top layer is temperature-regulating (especially crucial if you’re a ‘hot’ sleeper), and has a delightfully cushy feeling.

The next layer is sturdier - providing support for your spine and helping distribute the weight across your hips and shoulders. The bottom layer is castellated foam to allow extra compression.

With an impressive 365 trial period too to make sure it’s right for you (the longest trial period we’ve found) and a lifetime guarantee, Nectar have put their money where their mouth is - this is a risk-free purchase for the achey of back.

Sizes available: single, double, king, super king

Mattress depth: 28cm

Trial period: 200 nights

Guarantee: 10 years

The Hybrid Pro mattress has a firm feel about it, so it’s a popular choice for those who experience back pain and individuals who require more support.

It’s still super comfortable, but it’s just less fluffy and more firm. If you don’t like the feeling of sinking in to bed and prefer to have a more solid and stable mattress then this is the one for you.

There’s absolutely no motion transfer either, so you can snooze soundly even if you share a bed and your partner moves a lot during the night.

It’s ready to use three hours after unboxing but, as with all vacuum-packed mattresses, it can take a few days to reach full expansion.

There’s a 200-night trial, during which time you’re welcome to change your mind and return your mattress.

Sizes available: single, small double, double, king, super king

Mattress depth: 26cm

Guarantee: 5 years

This Silentnight mattress is rated as a medium-firm mattress, though it’s on the firmer side.

The core of this mattress is made up of 800 individual Mirapocket springs that respond to your body for complete support during the night. They’re designed to minimise movement, so this is great if you want to avoid annoying your partner during the night.

Add Eco Comfort Fibres that are hypoallergenic, sustainable, and breathable and you’ve got a great all-round mattress.

It’s also a cheap mattress - though that comes with a catch. The trial period is only 60 days, and there’s no option to return it - just exchange it. But if money is tight and you need firm support - this is a great choice.

Order before 5pm, and your new mattress will be dispatched on the same day for free next day delivery so there will be no hanging around and waiting for your new mattress to arrive.

Sizes available: single, double, king, super king

Mattress depth: 37cm

Guarantee: 5 years

This mattress might have a high price tag, but it’s worth it. Harrison Spinks is a luxury bed manufacturer - and this mattress is incredibly decadent. It’s made of cashmere, silk and mohair combined with a gorgeously plush pillow top that will soothe you to sleep.

It features over 13,000 pocket springs to provide back support, and it’s deliciously deep - 37cm - proffering ‘hotel style’ luxury as well as helping align your spine.

Sizes available: single, double, king

Mattress depth: 24cm

Trial period: 100 nights

Guarantee: 10 years

Say goodbye to back pain with this Wayfair Sleep mattress - and for a bargain price.

It features a plush, soft surface that leaves you feeling like you’re floating on a cloud, but it also offers a medium level of support to form to the shape of your body perfectly.

This memory foam mattress allows for complete relaxation by molding to your body, relieving key pressure points, and promoting airflow and breathability.

The core is made of high-performance independently encased coils, designed to eliminate motion disturbance and keep you sleeping soundly, even if sleeping with another.

This is a bed-in-box mattress, but it will inflate instantly after unboxing. However, it will also keep expanding for about 24 hours so that the foam and spring can fully expand to a nice appearance so be prepared to leave it to for a day or two before settling down to sleep.

You can also try this mattress for 100 nights to take the time to decide whether or not it’s the one you want.

Sizes available: single, double, king, superking

Mattress depth: 23cm

Guarantee: 1 years

This Dormeo mattress is designed to provide sheer luxurious support which also ensuring you have pressure relief when you lay down and settle down for the night.

It has a responsive layer of pocket springs resting on a bottom layer of ecocell foam, then a layer of latex at the top of the mattress, which perfectly adapts to your body’s contours provides excellent support and comfort.

Latex is not only very supportive, instantly moulding to the shape of your body, but it also gives the responsive feel of a traditional pocket sprung mattress.

This material is also great for allergy sufferers as it is hypo-allergenic and anti-microbial.

Sizes available: double, king, superking

Mattress depth: 20cm

Trial period: 100 nights

Guarantee: 10 years

Designed to provide the perfect balance between support and comfort for a restful night’s sleep, this mattress is available in 3 feels: soft, medium and firm - though for help with your back pain we would recommend choosing either the medium or firm option.

What you get is superior comfort and fullly responsive body support at the same time, so you’ll wake feeling refreshed.

Tempur mattresses are designed to be easy to take care of and all have removable mattress covers that can easily be washed (by the same