At a Glance:
Sciatica is a common condition that usually affects only one side of your body. It is most commonly caused by nerve compression in the lower lumbar region of the spine, and it can cause numbness or tingling in your leg, as well as pain that travels through your hips, buttocks, and all the way to your calves. Some people experience short-term pain, while others experience long-term pain.
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Find the best mattress for your back with Mattress Land!
If you have sciatica, you are probably aware that it can interfere with your sleep. One thing you can do to get closer to pain-free sleep is to buy a comfortable mattress.
Our Mattress Land sleep experts have scoured the market to introduce you to some of the best mattress for back pain on the market — specifically the best mattress for sciatica — all designed to relieve tension on the lower back for a cozy, pain-free sleep. In addition, we break down everything our customers need to know about sciatica and sleeping.
What is Sciatica?
Sciatica is defined as "pain that radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve, which branches from your lower back through your hips and buttocks and down each leg" and typically affects one side of the body, according to the Mayo Clinic.
How Common is Sciatica?
Sciatica is a common ailment. Sciatica affects approximately 40 percent of people in the United States at some point in their lives.
What are the Symptoms of Sciatica?
Sciatica symptoms include the following:
- Pain ranging from moderate to severe in your lower back, buttocks, and down your leg
- Lower back, buttock, leg, or foot numbness or weakness
- Pain that worsens with movement or movement loss
- Feeling of "pins and needles" in your legs, toes, or feet
What Causes Sciatica?
Sciatica can be caused by a variety of medical conditions, including:
- A slipped, or herniated disk puts pressure on a nerve root. The most common cause of sciatica is this. One to five percent of all people in the United States will experience a slipped disk at some point in their lives.
- A lumbar spine or sciatic nerve injury caused by trauma.
- Tumors in the lumbar spinal canal that cause sciatic nerve compression
- Osteoarthritis. In aging spines, bone spurs (jagged edges of bone) can form and compress lower back nerves.
- Spasms in the buttocks or lower back
- Other causes include a lack of exercise, obesity, wearing high heels, or sleeping on an overly soft mattress.
How Does Sciatica Affect Your Sleep?
Sciatic nerves begin in the lower back and travel down to the toes via the buttocks, back of the legs, and soles of the feet. Sciatica is caused by a sciatic nerve problem, most commonly a pinched or irritated nerve caused by a herniated disc. Poor posture, injury, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, arthritis, or bone spurs are all risk factors for sciatica.
Many people suffering from sciatica may struggle to find a comfortable sleeping position. Lying down can put pressure on the hips and lumbar area, causing many people to have flare-ups while sleeping or waking up after lying in the same position all night. Sciatica patients require a mattress that can distribute body weight and support the lower back to relieve pressure on the sciatic nerves.
Most likely, your sciatica has you tossing and turning in an attempt to find a comfortable position. Those suffering from severe sciatica may also struggle with bladder control. Choosing a mattress that isolates motion transfer can help reduce disturbances to a sleeping partner during midnight bathroom visits in these cases. Strong edge support and a responsive surface can also make getting in and out of bed easier.
Types of Mattresses for Back Pain and Sciatica
There is no single best type of mattress for sciatica, just as there is no single best type of mattress in general. A 2015 study, however, found that a medium firm or adjustable mattress may be better for spinal alignment, pain reduction, and sleep quality.
It's also worth noting that a higher foam-density mattress will be able to support a heavier person better than a lower-density mattress. If you are heavier, look for a thicker mattress with higher-density foam.
Aside from firmness, it's also useful to understand the different types of mattresses and which mattress for back pain can provide the support you need.
Hybrid mattresses combine a thick comfort layer with an innerspring support core. Polyfoam, memory foam, latex, cotton, wool, or down may be used for the comfort layers. Hybrid mattresses are designed to provide the support, airflow, and edge support of innerspring mattresses while also providing the conforming pressure relief and motion isolation of all-foam or latex models. As a result, hybrids are well-positioned to provide the necessary balance of support and pressure relief to relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve.
Latex mattresses can be manufactured synthetically or naturally from a substance derived from the rubber tree. Latex mattresses typically have a denser latex core and a plusher pressure-relieving latex in the comfort layers. Latex provides significant pressure relief without memory foam's close "hug" feel. This makes it an excellent choice for people with sciatica who frequently change their sleeping positions.
Memory foam mattresses do not have a coil support core. They typically have a high-density polyfoam support core and comfort layers made of memory foam, polyfoam, or latex. Memory foam provides unparalleled pressure relief by soothing and cushioning pressure points. The conforming properties of the foam can also fill in the lumbar area, preventing pressure buildup in the space between the lower back and the mattress.
Innerspring mattresses are constructed primarily of metal coils. While a thin comfort layer occasionally supplements this, it has no discernible effect on how the mattress feels. These are widely available and one of the least expensive mattress options. While an innerspring mattress with a mattress topper may not provide enough pressure relief for sleepers with sciatica, it is inexpensive to customize the feel to your liking.
3 Best Mattresses for Sciatica
After learning the types of mattresses that are best for sciatica sleepers, here are our expert picks for mattresses that can help provide a pain-free night and an undisturbed sleep.
Best Adjustable Bed: Beautyrest® Harmony™ Cayman™ Medium Hybrid Pillow Top Queen Mattress
If you are looking for an adjustable bed to take some of the pressure off your sciatic nerve at night, catch some ZZZs on this Beautyrest mattress. Our eco-friendly sleepers suffering from sciatica can sleep on comfort that combines NaturalCool technology that uses TENCEL yarn for breathable and moisture-wicking mattress comfort. At the same time, enhanced sustainability is achieved with Seaqual fabric technology, which uses recovered plastics from the world's oceans and transforms them into high-quality fabrics. Your back will thank you for sleeping on the additional two inches of a pillow top, Charcoal memory foam, AirCool foam, and GelTouch that'll cradle and support your spine, relieving your back pain.
Like 93 percent of our buyers, Kadie101 loves her mattress: "Like sleeping on a cloud!"
Best Medium Firm Mattress: Spa Retreat for SleepFit™ Fitness 2.0 Graphene Hybrid Medium Queen Mattress in a Box
No more long nights of intense back pain and pain relievers; this Spa Retreat mattress will support your spine in all the right ways for a comfortable sleep. After you've completed your nighttime ritual, snuggle up with your beloved pet on this medium firm mattress that is also adjustable-base friendly if you prefer sleeping in a raised position. This Spa Retreat mattress's layers will redefine going to bed with a night of peaceful and undisturbed sleep. The graphene memory foam and CoolTouch temperature regulating fabric help maintain a cool sleep environment uninterrupted by the tossing and turning of being a hot sleeper looking at a cold spot. The Certipur-US HD comfort layer, memory foam, and seven series wrapped coils will guarantee that you'll wake up refreshed and pain-free regardless by relieving your lower back pain.
Best Hybrid Mattress: Tempur-Pedic® TEMPUR-PRObreeze™ Medium Hybrid Queen Mattress
Hybrid mattresses are some of the best types of beds for sciatica, and what better hybrid to choose than this Tempur-Pedic Tempur-PRObreeze mattress? This Tempur-Pedic hybrid mattress provides ongoing innovation for continuous comfort and pressure relief in all the right places (your back, hips, and legs included). This hybrid mattress was meticulously built with the most pressure-relieving material the brand has ever made, over 1000 premium spring coils, and unique cooling technologies. Its foam and hybrid technology layers also adjust, mold, and answer your body's particular demands. The 1,000 quality spring coils engineered for smoother mobility support every point of contact more thoroughly. Tempur-Pedic's TEMPUR-CM+ provides the maximum airflow and breathability throughout the night for great support and comfort for those days your sciatic may flare up.
Take a look at what our verified reviewer MauiMcM has to say: "Sleeping is a Breezzzzze!"
6 Tips for How to Sleep with Lower Back Pain and Sciatica
You can still get a good night's sleep if you have sciatica! Here are some suggestions for relieving sciatic pain while sleeping.
Avoid using soft mattresses. A mattress that is too soft can cause your body to sink into it, throwing your spine out of alignment.
Place plywood beneath your mattress. If your mattress is too soft, place a plywood board between it and the box spring. You could also try laying your bed on the ground.
Consider using a body pillow. A body pillow can help you avoid switching from side to stomach in the middle of the night.
Think about stretching or yoga. Light stretching or yoga before bedtime may help loosen your muscles and relieve pressure on your nerve.
Take a hot bath. A warm bath may help some people suffering from lower back pain.
Keep a consistent sleep routine. Maintaining good sleep habits, such as keeping your room at a comfortable temperature, going to bed at the same time every day, and avoiding caffeine before bed, can all help improve your overall sleep quality.
Sciatic nerve pain is difficult to treat. While medication, medical advice, and physical therapy may be the main things that affect your pain levels and general way of life, the right mattress might help you sleep and manage your pain better. And at Mattress Land, we want to assist every customer from California to Washington in finding the ideal mattress to relieve their back pain. However, before you begin your search for the best mattress for sciatica, talk to your doctor about the best mattress type and features for you.
Now that we are wrapping up, let's review some of the questions our customers have while also looking for the best mattress for sciatic pain.
Q: Why is sciatica pain worse at night?
Muscle tension pulls on your hip joints when you lie down, causing a tug of war between your hip flexors in front and your piriformis in the back. The sciatic nerve runs alongside and beneath these muscles and can be irritated by muscle tension and pelvic misalignment.
Q: What is the best position to sleep in with sciatica?
With the right angle and pillows, you can get comfortable in a variety of sleeping positions with sciatica! If you sleep on your side and have sciatica, placing a pillow lengthwise between your knees and ankles will help to keep your hips in a more neutral position. If you sleep on your back and have sciatica, putting a pillow or two under your knees can help by relaxing your hip flexors.
Q: How can I treat my sciatica at night before sleeping?
Using hot or cold packs and taking pain relievers can help alleviate sciatica pain. Light stretching before bedtime may also be beneficial. (Specific yoga poses, such as Child's Pose and Downward-Facing Dog, can also provide relief.)
Why Trust Mattress Land?
Since 1996, Mattress Land has been making strides in the mattress industry to provide our customers the sleep experience they need — and deserve. We do that by offering the ultimate customer experience, complete with our trained experts, BedFIT™ computerized diagnostics, and our impressive showroom. We'll make sure that you find the right sleep solution for your sleeping habits so you can feel energized in your day-to-day life.
We are also proud of our diverse, employee-driven culture, where our teams work hard toward a common goal. We know that better sleep makes all the difference, and our commitment to changing the landscape of traditional mattress shopping is how we know Mattress Land is one of the best mattress stores around.
Shop Mattresses at Mattress Land
At Mattress Land, we provide quality name-brand mattresses for great prices. Our sleep experts are always happy to help you learn more about what the best mattress for sciatica is and how to sleep soundly. With locations throughout California, Idaho, Nevada, and Washington, Mattress Land is bound to have a sleep solution for everyone. We are more accessible than ever! You can call us at 800-909-9299, visit our website to shop Mattress Land sales, and check out Mattress Land reviews online. Or better yet, stop by one of our showrooms to discover why we are everyone's favorite local mattress store. Visit us today!