How Do You Know When You Need A New Mattress?
In our case, I was tossing and turning all night. I mean, it’s not that hard to starting thinking about a new mattress when you’re not getting a good night’s sleep. So I guess that’s the first answer to that question – when you’re not getting a good night’s sleep.
Try Foam Pad Before Buying New Mattress
What we did next was add a piece of about 4″ foam to the top of the mattress. We already had the foam pad (well, more than a “pad”, this thing was 4″ deep at least) so this was an easy next step to try before replacing the mattress.
The new foam pad was heavenly to pay down and go to sleep on, and it wasn’t too bad for movement during the night. That is, we didn’t sink so deep down that it was hard to change positions. We should note that this wasn’t memory foam, it was just soft yellow foam, but not as squishy as the memory foam type.
Anyway, so it was great to fall asleep on and for about 2 or 3 weeks I was happy sleeping away on it. But then I noticed how stiff and sore I was in the morning. If it helps put things in context I’m 43 years old and do a very mild workout about 3 times a week. So a little creakiness is starting to become normal in the morning for me, but the stiffness I was feeling since adding the new foam mattress pad was not normal. It was starting to feel very uncomfortable in fact.
Removed Foam Mattress Pad After Too Many Morning Aches And Pains
The foam pad had to go, it was obvious that this was the cause of my overall stiffness in the morning. The foam pad wasn’t causing me back “pain” yet, but there was stiffness in the back and generally head to toe in my other muscles in the morning. So that wasn’t fun or helpful so the foam pad went back to storage for use when guests complain the guest futon is too hard (which it is because it is a futon. And which I secretly am glad about to keep visitors from staying too long!)
The Next Clue In The New Mattress Question
After the foam pad was gone, I was starting to pay attention more closely to the aches and pains I was having in the morning and I noticed that my neck was still bothering me. Once this came to mind I started paying more attention to what was going on with my head while sleeping…
Turns out I was using two old and flat pillow, and I kind of like older familiar bed items to stiff new ones, but I was starting to suspect something here! Now that I was paying close attention to these things I noticed that one pillow wasn’t enough and two pillows lifted my head to high putting my neck at an uncomfortable angle…
Check Your Pillows Before Buying A New Mattress Or Investing In A Mattress Pad
Could it be that this inadequate combination of pillows was causing me a lot of the tossing and turning I’d now spent weeks tying to get to the bottom of? My next hypothesis became the”Goldilocks Pillow Theory” – did I need one that was “just right”? Memories of late night infomercials about some special pillow that elevates your head just right and to keep your neck straight were now coming to mind.
With all this pillow theory in the back of my mind I was standing at Ross Dress For Less Store with my wife as she was looking for something totally unrelated to bed and bedding when I happened upon the bin of pillows. After reading some different labels on each pillow (this is Ross, there’s isn’t a lot of space devoted to different brands and categories, instead there’s just kind of a catch-all of pillows in a tiered bin) I saw one that mentioned being able to conform as needed.
I picked it up, it was thicker than my old, flat pillows. I squeezed it, it had some give meaning my head would sink a little and my neck wouldn’t be forced to stay at an angle. And it was only about $15.
Now we’d gone from trying a free (because we already had it) foam mattress to a $15 investment in a pillow. We haven’t yet had to shell out for a new mattress. BUT I’d also spent several weeks in various states of sleep-related discomfort while I tried to solve this problem. However, having bought new mattresses before that was preferable to the online research and in-store mattress sales experience that awaited me if buying a new mattress became necessary!
Back to the Ross pillow – actually a Sealy pillow. Sorry Sealy, but I checked the tag and there’s no more information than the name so I can’t tout the exact model.
End of long story, the pillow is working great. Neck is supported. I imagine my spine nice and straight as depicted in the late night pillow infomercial. No aches, no pains, no new mattress expensive, research or salespeople!
The moral of this long, boring story is: Check Your Pillow Before You Buy A New Mattress.