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What can be better than a good, comfy bed?
Only a mattress that is ideal for you and your back.
Today, we are going to take a look at 4 chiropractor recommended mattresses and learn how to pick what would work for you specifically. Let’s get right to it!
A Quick Preview
Best Overall - Editor’s Pick
Sparrow Signature Hybrid
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Best All-Foam Chiropractor Mattress
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Best Extra Firm Option
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Best for Back Pain
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List of the Best Chiropractor Recommended Mattresses
Best Overall - Editor’s Pick — Sparrow Signature Hybrid
- Reinforced coils around the perimeter make getting in and out of bed easier.
- Moderate slow-response Energex™ memory foam helps to cradle the body and ease tension.
- Robust coils keep the spine and lumbar in better alignment, which may be what a chiropractor would recommend.
The Sparrow Signature Hybrid is my best chiropractor-recommended mattress due to its robust coil system, soft and responsive Energex™ memory foam, and strong edge support. I reviewed the Sparrow and found its coils to be highly responsive, with bounce levels of about 10.7 inches. This is higher than the Plank by 26%, which means the Sparrow is a suitable option for keeping your back and hips in healthy alignment, as chiropractors recommend. The coils can easily adjust to and support your weight. In addition, the Energex™ memory foam gives you about 2.8 inches of sinkage (the minimum I look for is 2 inches) which is more than enough to cushion pressure points and relieve tension effectively.
I also tested the edge support of the Sparrow, and was impressed by its compression of 3.8 inches while sitting, which is less than what I usually look for (usually, a maximum of 4 inches is my rule of thumb). That means the edge is sturdy and stable for using the full bed width.
What I Don’t Like About This Mattress
One feature I don’t like about this mattress is that, due to its high bounce levels, it may not isolate motion well enough for couples, which can leave you a bit more disturbed if you have a restless partner.
Read our full Sparrow mattress review for more information.
Best All-Foam Chiropractor Mattress - Puffy
- all-foam construction for excellent pressure relief;
- stain-resistant cover will keep the mattress fresh longer;
- suitable for adjustable bed frames;
- denser transition layer to prevent the feeling of being stuck;
- gel-infused comfort foam for a cooling effect.
The next model I want to mention is the Puffy, an all-foam mattress. It can adapt to all sleeping positions and supports the spine properly no matter how you sleep.
The Puffy has a medium feel. This means it will not put much pressure on the protruding parts of your body. Moreover, thanks to the cradling effect of the foam layers, this mattress can help reduce pressure points by gently hugging your body.
Read our full Puffy mattress review for more information.
Best Extra Firm Option - Plank Mattress
- 0.75 inches of comfort material on the Extra Firm side ensure you’re close to the robust core, which can help keep the spine in better alignment.
- Optional GlacioTex cover helps keep you feeling cool every time you change sleeping positions.
- High-density core ensures your mattress lasts longer as it can hold the extra weight.
The Plank is my best extra firm chiropractor-recommended mattress for its minimal sinkage, quick recovery speed, and cool cover. I tested the Plank’s Extra Firm side and was impressed at its firmness levels. Its 1 inch of sinkage was just enough to offer some cushioning while focusing on providing dedicated spinal support, as a chiropractor would recommend. This contrasts the Sparrow, where the Plank was firmer by 2.8 times. The Plank also has adequate speed when recovering from compressions, taking only 0.15 seconds to recover from compressions partially. That means you won’t feel stuck while shifting positions.
The Plank also comes with an optional GlacioTex cover, made of Phase Change Material that can absorb heat. With a measurement of about 89.7 degrees Fahrenheit (the maximum I prefer is around 90 degrees), and minimal sinkage, so you’re not stuck in heat-trapping layers, the Plank is suitable for helping keep your temperature neutral throughout the night.
What I Don’t Like About This Mattress
One thing I don’t like about the Plank is its firmness may feel too firm for lightweight side sleepers, as there may not be enough sinkage for the should and hips to receive adequate weight re-distribution and pressure relief.
Read our full Plank mattress review for more information.
Best Chiropractor Recommended Mattress for Back Pain - Winkbed
- hybrid design offers a balanced combo of support and cradling;
- 4 firmness options for different body types and sleeping positions;
- breathable and cooling Tencel cover;
- Extra-Edge support system for a larger sleeping surface;
- extra foam encasement in the lumbar section for proper spinal alignment.
The major cause of back pain is usually a misaligned spine; however, with the extra attention paid to lumbar support in this Winkbed mattress, bad backs are drastically improved on. Additionally, this model would work for users who experience back or neck pain thanks to its smart construction.
The pocketed coil support system has different zones, each of which responds differently to pressure. When more pressure is applied, the coils push back. At the same time, when there’s minimal pressure, the coils ply. This means the Winkbed will provide targeted support for different body parts, preventing any unwanted sagging and keeping your back in a neutral position.
Read our full Winkbed mattress review for more information.
Our Methodology - Why I Picked These Mattresses
These mattresses have been chosen based on what I consider to be the most important factors that chiropractors look at when recommending mattresses. Based on my reviewing methodology, I look at the feel and pressure-relieving capabilities of the mattress closely before making a decision on if the mattress makes the cut or not. Chiropractors typically approve of a mattress based on how well it addresses and reduces hip pain, lower back pain, and chronic pain caused by arthritis. So, it's super important that the mattress has layers designed to relax the body, while also supporting it.
One of the ways to reduce muscle tension and cause the body to relax is by how pressure-relieving the mattress is. I tested this by taking apart the layers of a mattress, seeing how each feels, and lying down to test the sinkage and cradling effect. Typically, the more slow-adapting the high-density foam is, the better it is to evenly re-distribute your weight and take pressure off your sore points.
Which Chiropractor Mattress Type Is the Best?
There are many types of chiropractic mattresses, and each of them has specific characteristics that may or may not work for you:
- Memory foam. Famous for its gentle cradling feel, memory foam is often recommended for back pain because. This construction offers close conforming and distributes the body weight uniformly. It promotes proper spinal alignment, which is crucial (especially when you have back issues). Memory foam is also great for relieving pressure and pain in shoulders and hips. However, this material can make users sleep hot (unless it is infused with cooling particles like gel).
- Latex. Latex can also mold to your body during sleep but it doesn’t allow for much sinkage. It offers bouncy pressure relief that is favored by those sleepers who don’t like feeling stuck in their bed. Latex is naturally temperature-neutral, even if it’s synthetic. Keep in mind that such mattresses are extremely durable but also quite expensive.
- Innerspring. Coils offer consistent support throughout the mattress surface. Many manufacturers use pocketed coils for an even weight distribution and spinal support. Innerspring beds are rather affordable but don’t typically provide superb pressure relief.
- Hybrid. Such mattresses combine supportive innerspring systems with either foam or latex comfort layers. They successfully balance support and comfort, aiding in proper spinal alignment and providing pressure relief. Keep in mind that hybrid mattresses can be quite expensive. Plus, they are usually heavy and hard to move.
Note: waterbeds work to displace the heaviest pressure points of the body and sometimes provide pain relief for people with back issues. However, this type doesn’t work for everyone and isn’t typically recommended by chiropractors.
Choosing the Firmness of Your Chiropractor Recommended Mattress
Generally, people think that firmer mattresses are better for your back.
And while research suggests that harder beds may help improve back pain (1), an ideal firmness level depends on each body type and sleeping position:
- Side sleeping. A soft to medium surface is ideal for side sleepers. This position may create pressure points in one’s shoulders and hips, so a proper mattress should offer some sinkage for those areas. If you are heavier than average (more than 250 pounds), you may need a medium mattress that would support your weight evenly.
- Back sleeping. Back sleepers are advised to choose medium to medium-firm mattresses. This sleeping position requires sturdy support and enough cradling for the hips and buttocks. Mattresses with an extra lumbar support zone would be ideal in this case. Overweight back sleepers may benefit from using a medium-firm or a firm mattress.
- Stomach sleeping. This position is generally considered unhealthy for the spine. However, if you can’t change the habit of sleeping on your stomach, you should pick a firm mattress. If you weigh more than 250 pounds, you may want to invest in an extra-firm model as it will prevent sinkage in the pelvic area and the unhealthy curves in your spine.
- Switching positions. Combination sleepers need sturdy support that would allow them to change positions effortlessly. In this case, you can try a medium to medium-firm mattress.
Also Read: 5 Best Mattresses for herniated disc sufferers
5 Best tempurpedic alternatives (beds like tempurpedic but cheaper)
How Much Do Chiropractor-Recommended Mattresses Cost?
To be frank, the prices of chiropractor-recommended mattresses can vary greatly. They would depend on the mattress type, size, brand, cooling components, construction, and more.
That being said, shoppers need to remember that it can be quite challenging to find good models under $1,000 among chiropractor-recommended mattresses.
Other Factors to Consider When Searching for a Good Chiropractor Recommended Mattress
While chiropractor’s recommendations are important, you need to remember that there are some other (potentially game-changing) factors you may want to consider:
- Foam density. In memory foam mattresses, higher densities mean that a bed would be able to maintain stable support longer. This aspect is especially important for sleepers over 250 pounds.
- Coil gauge. If you are considering an innerspring or a hybrid mattress, pay attention to the coil gauge. It defines the overall strength of the coils. Lower gauge means thicker and more durable coils that would provide stronger support.
- Size. If you have back issues, you might require more room to switch positions during the night (to find the most comfortable one). If you share your bed with a partner, it has to be big enough to give you both legroom and prevent you from disturbing your loved one when you’re feeling restless. Queen can accommodate 2 adults, but some couples prefer King for the extra legroom.
- Adjustable frame compatibility. Some back issues require sleeping in a reclined position. That’s when an adjustable frame can come in handy. However, not all mattresses are flexible enough to work with adjustable beds, so you need to check that aspect when shopping (2).
- Trial. If you have back issues, a good sleep trial is an absolute must. You may need more time to break in the new mattress or see how it affects your current condition.
- Edge support. For sleepers with back issues, it can sometimes be hard to get out of bed (especially when dealing with pain). In this case, strong mattress edges could become a real salvation. Reliable edges can give users a little boost when getting out of bed. When pressing the hands into the edges, sleepers can push themselves up and thus, get out of bed easier. With weak edges, that would be much more challenging. Now, innerspring and hybrid models usually perform the best when it comes to edge support.
- Motion transfer. Back pain often causes sleepers to shift in bed trying to find the most comfortable (and the least painful) position. This can cause nighttime disturbances for their partner. To avoid that, shoppers might want to look for slow-moving mattress types that absorb shock from motion well. In most cases, memory foam does the best job in this scenario. Hybrid mattresses can also be worth a try, but only those that have thicker foam comfort layers.
- Thermoregulation. Sleeping with back pain is uncomfortable enough. But having to deal with night sweats on top of that can often make restful sleep unattainable. So, for hot sleepers, it might be a good idea to choose temperature-neutral mattresses such as latex or breathable innerspring models. Hybrid mattresses can also sleep cool, especially if they use latex or gel-infused foam for the comfort layers. Another type of foam that isn’t very likely to sleep hot is open-cell. This foam type has tiny air channels that allow for better breathability and thus, cooler sleep.
- Thickness. This aspect is often disregarded by shoppers, but it’s quite important nonetheless. Thicker mattresses often have thicker comfort layers and can offer more of a hug. Additionally, thicker mattresses can make it easier for sleepers to get out of bed. Thinner models, however, are typically more affordable. They also can often be firmer, as their comfort layers tend to be thinner as well.
- Zoned support. This feature is not a necessity but can always be a huge plus. Zoned mattresses are meant to deliver different levels of support for different body parts. As a result, such models are more likely to help sleepers maintain a properly aligned, neutral spine during the night. This often leads to reduced tension and, consequently, alleviated back pain.
Also Read: Mattresses Made in the USA
When it comes to back issues, a good mattress can be a game-changer. You just have to make sure that you pick a proper firmness level.
Keep in mind that the materials used also play a role here, as foam tends to be more cushioning than latex and innerspring. At the same time, hybrid mattresses combine the best of the two worlds: uniform support (coils) and pressure-relieving cradling (foam or latex).
In my opinion, the Sparrow Signature Hybrid is my best chiropractor-recommended mattress as it has a highly responsive coil and foam system, which can effectively cradle and support the body and keep the spine in neutral alignment, as chiropractors recommend.
Which bed would be the most suited for you? Share your thoughts in the comments!
- S.R. Garfin, S.A. Pye (1981, February 10). Bed design and its effect on chronic low back pain--a limited controlled trial. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6453325/
- Richard Staehler (2017, October 25). Considerations When Choosing a Mattress. Retrieved from https://www.spine-health.com/wellness/sleep/considerations-when-choosing-mattress
Hours of Research
Sleep Experts Consulted
If you’re looking for good bed frames, then IKEA has what you need. Their website has an extensive range of items to choose from, and they have great prices, so you won’t have to worry about making any compromises.
Hi Marge, thanks for sharing your ideas!
While there are plenty of great bed frames in IKEA, not all of them can boast of exceptional quality. So you might want to be careful and read other shoppers’ reviews. You can also check some of our in-depth guides on how to pick the best bed frame for different types of sleepers.