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Best Mattresses for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

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Written by: Alex Savy
Read 28 minLast updated on July 15, 2022

A mattress can have a direct impact on one’s sleep and life quality. 

But when it comes to Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, the mattress choice is especially important. After all, when dealing with a health condition, people need to use everything in their arsenals to get enough sleep.

Today’s review will share the 6 best mattresses for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, each of which can potentially improve one’s sleep quality drastically. Plus, readers will find a comprehensive shopping guide that may prevent them from getting lost among the number of mattress options and technical specs.

A Quick Preview

Puffy
Best overall

Puffy
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Saatva Classic
Runner up

Saatva Classic
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AS3 by Amerisleep
Best Foam Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

AS3 by Amerisleep
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WinkBed
Best Hybrid Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

WinkBed
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GhostBed Luxe
Best Cooling Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

GhostBed Luxe
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Zoma
Best Budget Option

Zoma
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Our Reviews of the 6 Best Mattresses for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

Best Overall – Editor’s Choice — Puffy

Puffy Mattress

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Highlights

  • extra-long warranty to ensure long-lasting performance;
  • close conforming for targeted support and tension alleviation;
  • washable, stain-resistant cover for easy cleaning.

The Puffy is an excellent example of a mattress that ticks all the right boxes for people with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. It offers a generous hug, which means this model is going to be gentle on one’s painful joints or tender skin. At the same time, the Puffy ensures pinpoint support thanks to its close conforming. In other words, this mattress can deliver the right support levels for all body parts, preventing pressure build-up and relieving pain. I, for one, felt almost instant relief when dealing with back pain and sleeping on the Puffy.

Read our full Puffy mattress review for more information.

puffy mattress firmness
Puffy Mattress On Bed Frame

Runner Up — Saatva Classic

Saatva Classic Mattress

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Highlights

  • proprietary lumbar support layer to encourage healthy spinal alignment;
  • breathable construction to prevent night sweats;
  • luxurious pillow-top layer to create a comfy padded surface for the joints.

At first, the Saatva Classic may look like any other mattress. However, this model has a unique construction that sets it apart from many similar mattresses (like the Avocado Organic Luxury Mattress which also has a coil-on-coil design). The Saatva’s main highlight is the Lumbar Zone. It’s an extra layer of supportive memory foam and an active wire in the center third of the mattress. It gives the mattress extra resilience in the area where heavier body parts typically sink in (hips and buttocks). Thanks to that, I experienced zero pressure in my back all through the night. This makes the Saatva a suitable option for people with EDS who require proper alignment to achieve pressure alleviation.

Best Foam Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome — AS3 by Amerisleep

Amerisleep AS3

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Highlights

  • less likely to sleep hot thanks to increased breathability;
  • zoned HIVE layer to ensure targeted support;
  • sturdy construction for long-lasting performance.

Looking for the best memory foam mattress for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome but don’t want something that may sleep hot? The AS3 by Amerisleep might be the right solution. This mattress kept me comfortably cool throughout the night, even though it felt like traditional memory foam. The thing is, the AS3 has a smart construction. It uses plant-based foam that has an open-cell structure and allows the air to travel through the layers. Additionally, the middle layer is convoluted. It creates some space for the airflow, aiding temperature regulation. That’s why the AS3 sleeps cooler than many popular foam competitors (like the pricier Tempur-Pedic).

Read our full Amerisleep AS3 mattress review for more information.

Amerisleep AS3 Review-P1133774
Amerisleep-as3

Best Hybrid Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome — WinkBed

Winkbed Mattress On a Bed Frame
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Highlights

  • uniform edge-to-edge support to ensure ease of movement;
  • four comfort variations to satisfy all types of sleepers;
  • thick and conforming comfort layers to provide extra-gentle padding for tender joints.

This hybrid mattress by WinkBeds is an excellent example of how resilient support and gentle pressure relief can combine in a harmonious ensemble. I especially appreciate the thick and cradling top layers that nicely cushioned each protruding body part. This prevented tension build-up in all sleeping styles I’ve tried. Speaking of which…

The WinkBed mattress offers 4 firmness options, from plush to extra firm. Therefore, this model can accommodate individuals that belong to all weight categories and prefer various sleep positions. And since the WinkBed comes with a 120-night trial, people with EDS are free to test several variations to find their perfect match.

Read our full Winkbed mattress review for more information.

Winkbeds-P1077851
Winkbed Mattress On a Bed Frame

Best Cooling Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome — GhostBed Luxe

Ghostbed Luxe

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Highlights

  • proprietary cooling components for sweat-free sleep;
  • universally comfortable medium firmness to accommodate a wide range of sleepers;
  • extended warranty to guarantee reliable performance.

The GhostBed Luxe mattress is a rare find. Not only does it provide adaptive support and effective pressure relief, but it also sleeps cool. I was surprised to discover that this mattress was pretty hugging but did not allow for heat build-up. This makes the GhostBed Luxe a perfect solution for hot sleepers who don’t want to give up on that cradling memory foam feel.

It’s also worth mentioning that the Luxe model feels relatively plush. It has a medium feel, making it somewhat squishy on top. This means the GhostBed will gently hug one’s joints without causing pressure on them (thus, relieving pain too). The only downside is that this firmness level might not work for strict stomach sleepers, especially heavier individuals.

Layers
Construction

Best Budget Option — Zoma

Zoma Mattress

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Highlights

  • deep pressure relief thanks to close conforming and zoned support;
  • convoluted top layer for enhanced breathability and cooler sleep;
  • mesh-like cover to enhance cooling.

Here’s the deal: people tend to spend a lot of money when trying to find a good mattress for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (or any other health condition). However, the Zoma is an exception. This mattress can satisfy one’s special needs while coming with an attractive price tag. It’s an adaptive, conforming model that molds to the sleeper’s shape and ensures optimal support. Thanks to that, I felt almost weightless when sleeping on the Zoma.

I was also impressed with this mattress’s build quality. Despite its affordability, the Zoma feels rigid and quality-made. Even the stitching on the cover seemed perfect when I examined it. Chances are, this mattress can withstand regular use for years to come.

Read our full Zoma mattress review for more information.

Layers
Zoma Mattress On a Bed Frame

What Is Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome?

Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (commonly known as EDS) is an illness that affects the connective tissues in the body (1). Connective tissues are tissues within the body that connect parts of the body. For example, ligaments connect bones to each other and support joints. EDS weakens these connective tissues, which include, but are not limited to, tendons, ligaments, skin, and even blood vessels and organs. 

Overall, there are 13 types of EDS, often making this condition challenging to diagnose. The most common symptoms include loose joints, stretchy skin, fragile skin that bruises easily, hypermobile joints (making them more susceptible to sprains or dislocation), weakened blood vessels, etc.

Why Do People with EDS Need Special Mattresses?

To understand why it’s crucial to find the best mattress for EDS, readers should know how this disease affects sleep.

First of all, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome often results in painful joints due to weak ligaments. Skin bruising may also cause aching. Naturally, pain and restful slumber don’t usually go hand in hand, making it challenging for people with EDS to get the needed amount of sleep.

Additionally, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome often increases the risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea (2). The thing is, the abnormalities of the cartilage caused by this illness can affect the airway tissues. The airway may simply be weakened, narrowed, and prone to collapse during sleep. This, in turn, often leads to sleep apnea, which is one of the common nighttime disruptors.

It’s also worth mentioning that EDS may cause excessive daytime sleepiness, chronic fatigue, and, consequently, reduced quality of one’s day-to-day life (3). This has to do with the reduced sleep quality that can be caused by both EDS-related pain and sleep apnea.

Needless to say, an average mattress won’t do in this situation. EDS patients need something special that could help them feel more comfortable and experience less pain. To achieve that, shoppers should choose mattresses that can tick the right boxes (which they can learn about below).

Why-Do-People-with-EDS-Need-Special-Mattresses

Source: https://theschooltoolkit.org/what-are-jhs-and-eds/

What Makes the Best Mattress for EDS?

When dealing with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, simply buying a good mattress in terms of comfort is not enough. Shoppers need to consider several more factors to find a suitable model.

First of all, the best mattress for EDS has to be soft enough to prevent bruising or making one’s tender joints hurt. At the same time, the mattress must be firm enough to support the back.

Anything overly soft or firm will cause the spine to misalign. And misalignment typically leads to tension build-up, causing or aggravating the pain. Additionally, if the mattress is too stiff, it can lead to more bruising.

Aside from the right firmness, a good mattress for EDS has to offer close conforming. In other words, its comfort layer has to adjust to the curves of the body, offering pinpoint support for each section. Conforming mattresses typically help sleepers relax more and excel at tension alleviation. And reduced tension can make the sleeper’s tender joints less painful, which is always a huge plus for EDS patients. 

Zoned support is another thing EDS patients might want to look for. Of course, it’s not a necessity, as a conforming mattress of the right firmness will do its job well. However, zoned design can take things to the next level. When one of the layers features different support zones (either the comfort or the transition layer), it can handle proper spinal alignment better. Targeted support aids faster relaxation and pressure relief, giving EDS patients more chances to reduce pain.

How to Choose the Mattress Type when Dealing EDS

“One size fits all” is certainly not the case with mattresses, especially for people dealing with medical conditions. Shoppers need to distinguish between different mattress types to understand whether they will suit their needs. 

So, here are the examples of mattresses that may work for people with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome:

  • Memory foam. Foam is visco-elastic, meaning that it reacts to pressure and body temperature and molds around the sleeper. Therefore, such mattresses are conforming and adaptive, making them ideal for people with EDS. Memory foam can relieve pressure fast, so it’s also a good option for sleepers who suffer from frequent pains. At the same time, shoppers should remember that this mattress type isn’t very breathable and can cause overheating. Memory foam may also feel a bit restricting due to its hugging feel. This can cause difficulties in changing positions in people with pain. 
  • Polyurethane foam. Mattresses made using polyfoam are similar to memory foam models. They are adaptive, slow-moving, and pressure-alleviating. At the same time, polyurethane foam feels slightly more resilient, which means it’s not as restricting as memory foam. Polyfoam mattresses are also more breathable and less prone to overheating. On the downside, most polyurethane foam models are less durable than memory foam mattresses.
  • Latex. What makes latex mattresses special is their impressive durability. On top of that, latex models can deliver the needed conforming to help EDS patients experience less tension and pain. At the same time, latex is pretty resilient and doesn’t feel overly enveloping. This makes latex mattresses ideal for those who want fast pressure relief without feeling stuck. That being said, this mattress type can be very pricey, making latex models less than ideal for budget shoppers.
  • Hybrid. These mattresses combine resilient coils with either foam or latex to offer both responsive support and effective pressure relief. However, people with EDS need to be careful here: some hybrids don’t have thick enough comfort layers to provide decent conforming. That’s why shoppers should pay attention to the construction and the number of comfort/transition layers. While hybrids are favored for their balanced feel, they tend to be tall and bulky, making them not-so-perfect for extra-tall bed frames. A combination like that will force sleepers to climb onto their bed, which can be challenging for people with EDS-caused pain.

A side note: some readers might be wondering, “Where are innerspring mattresses on this list?”. The thing is, spring mattresses aren’t that good when it comes to pressure relief. They typically use thin padding layers on top of the coils, which means these mattresses cannot offer the needed conforming.

Other Crucial Aspects to Consider When Shopping for the Best Mattress for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome

The lists of mattress characteristics may often seem overwhelming when shopping. So, here are the most important aspects readers should pay attention to without getting distracted by bells and whistles:

  • Sleeping style. Each sleep position has certain requirements in terms of support and cushioning. For example, side sleepers need softer mattresses that can cradle their protruding shoulders and hips instead of crashing against them. Back sleepers need a medium or medium-firm mattress. This way, they will receive enough support for the back and decent cradling for the hips. As for stomach sleepers, they should choose firmer mattresses to enjoy decent support and prevent back curvatures. There are also super-firm mattresses on the market, which usually work for overweight stomach sleepers. 
  • Sleeper’s weight. This aspect can affect the overall feel of the mattress. A heavier sleeper will compress the materials more, so even a firmer mattress may seem too soft for them (here are excellent examples of top-rated mattresses for heavier people). As for lightweight individuals, their weight might not be enough to compress the comfort layers, leading to sharp pressure points. That’s why people over 230 pounds are advised to go slightly firmer for each sleeping style, and individuals below 130 pounds – to pick softer mattresses. For example, while back sleepers are recommended to choose medium mattresses, a petite individual can use a medium-soft model. In contrast, an overweight sleeper may want to get a firm mattress. 
  • EDS type. It’s essential to get a proper diagnosis before investing in a new mattress. The thing is, different types of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome may have different requirements. For example, people with extra-thin skin might want to look for mattresses that use thick Euro-top layers (or at least softer foam layers on top) to prevent bruising. Patients with joint hypermobility, on the other hand, might require sturdier support to prevent unnecessary load on the joints during sleep. These are just a few examples, but they explain how a proper diagnosis may affect one’s mattress choice.
  • Cooling. Because EDS can cause pain and discomfort, it’s important to eliminate another sleep disruptor – overheating. Now, latex and hybrid mattresses don’t typically sleep hot. Polyurethane foam may also remain neutral as it has an open-cell structure, but readers should remember that this material is quite hugging and may still feel somewhat warm. As for memory foam, it’s considered the least breathable and the most likely to cause heat build-up. That being said, some models use cooling gel particles that may improve the situation.
  • Edge support. Strong edges are especially important for people with EDS who experience joint or any other pain. Firmer edges can help sleepers get out of bed easier by offering a little boost for the arms (instead of compressing underneath). Now, hybrid mattresses can usually boast of the strongest edge support, making them a good solution for people with pain-related limited mobility.
  • Motion transfer. When EDS patients experience pain or discomfort, they can become restless during sleep. And that can be a problem when sharing the bed with a partner. In this case, it’s better to choose mattresses that have a slow-moving feel, such as memory foam. Polyfoam and latex models also do a great job absorbing shock from motion, even though they are more resilient than memory foam. As for hybrid mattresses, shoppers should be careful in this area. A motion-isolating hybrid must use independent (wrapped) coils for support and extra-thick foam layers for comfort. Otherwise, it may be too bouncy.
  • Ease of movement. Joint pain can make it challenging for sleepers to change positions. And an overly cradling mattress may aggravate the situation. That’s why people with somewhat limited mobility are advised to avoid memory foam (as it can often feel like quicksand). Polyfoam or latex, however, allow for ease of movement. So do hybrids. 
  • Material quality. Finding a suitable mattress when dealing with a health condition can take a lot of time. So, it’s better to invest in a long-lasting model than to struggle with this task every few years. Now, when shopping for a foam or latex model, readers need to pay attention to the material density. The higher the number is, the more durable the material will be. That being said, extra-dense foams and latex are typically firmer, so the manufacturer may use them for the support core only. As for the coils in hybrid mattresses, shoppers should look at the gauge number. A lower gauge signifies thicker and longer-lasting coils.
  • Size. Choosing the right size is important, as it may affect the sleeper’s comfort. For example, when the mattress is too small for partnered sleepers, they may disturb each other during the night, causing reduced sleep quality. Many people with EDS also need non-standard sizes (like these good mattresses for RV) to receive proper support and comfort in various scenarios.

FAQ

What kind of mattress is best for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome?

Generally, memory foam and latex mattresses work the best for sleepers with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. Such mattresses are gentle on the joints but can offer decent support to prevent pressure build-up. A hybrid mattress might work too, but it has to have conforming comfort layers.

What is the best mattress firmness for EDS?

Medium-firm mattresses are typically recommended for people dealing with pain. That being said, it’s also crucial to consider one’s sleeping style and choose the mattress firmness accordingly.

How much would a good mattress for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome cost?

On average, quality mattresses range between $1,000 and $2,000. However, the price will depend on several factors, including mattress type, warranty coverage, bells and whistles, company reputation, etc.

Final Word

Sleeping well with EDS may seem challenging. However, the right mattress can make all the difference. And if shoppers want to make sure they choose exactly what they need, it’s crucial to consider the aspects mentioned in this guide before finalizing the purchase. Most mattresses do come with sleep trials, but doing the research and shopping wisely can help readers save a lot of time.

And if you don’t want to sift through the multiple options, allow me to make a suggestion – the Puffy, which is my personal favorite on this list. This mattress was created by people who truly understand what comfort means. It’s adaptive and pressure-relieving but has a strong core that aids proper back support. This makes the Puffy ideal for people with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, being gentle on their joints and keeping them tension-free. Additionally, this mattress feels very well-made. It can be a worthy investment for any shopper out there.

What mattress type are you currently using? And how does it affect your Ehlers-Danlos syndrome symptoms? Share your experience in the comments!

 

References:

  1. Matt Smith (February 17, 2021). What Is Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome? Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/ehlers-danlos-syndrome-facts
  2. Brandon Peters (March 30, 2020). The Link Between Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and Sleep Apnea. Retrieved from https://www.verywellhealth.com/ehlers-danlos-syndrome-and-sleep-apnea-4129568
  3. Thomas Gaisl, Cecilia Giunta, Daniel J Bratton, Kate Sutherland, Christian Schlatzer, Noriane Sievi, Daniel Franzen, Peter A. Cistulli, Marianne Rohrbach, and Malcolm Kohler (July 13, 2017). Obstructive sleep apnoea and quality of life in Ehlers-Danlos syndrome: a parallel cohort study. Retrieved from https://thorax.bmj.com/content/72/8/729.info

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