Best Mattress for Your Money When Choosing Your Next Bed

What is the best mattress? One that supports you in perfect comfort all through the night as you change positions, and continues to do so for many years with no noticeable decline in quality.

So there are really only two main points to consider: comfort and durability.

Of course each person’s definition of these qualities is unique to them. What one person finds deliciously comfortable, another may find nearly intolerable. That’s why it’s so important to test everything to make your own mattress comparisons.

Comfort can be defined as how well the mattress supports the whole body during a full night’s sleep, and how good you feel when you get up in the morning, all things being equal. Muscular stiffness and pain can be the result of a worn-out mattress or one that just isn’t right for you. (It’s not fair to blame your mattress for a hangover, however.)

Durability can be defined by how long the mattress lasts, how well it keeps doing its job over time, and how the materials, including both inside structure and outside fabrics, hold up after years of use.

There are other qualities that might enter into your decision. You may, for example, desire all natural materials inside and out, such as natural latex encased in organic cotton — or some other quality that is important to you, either from a health standpoint or some other reason.

When choosing a bed, it’s very important to determine upfront what qualities are most important before you begin the process of research, testing and comparing mattresses. Then you know exactly what you’re looking for and the process becomes much more efficient.

Pressure Points

Since the most important aspect of your choice is comfort and support, let’s discuss what this means for you, specifically.

Mattress support is complex because the human body is complex and no two are exactly alike. But there are some commonalities. Here are some ways to determine if any particular mattress is the best one for you.

  • Does it support your spine at all points without pressure in one or another particular area?
  • Is it firm enough? If you have back pain or other type of musculoskeletal discomfort, your best choice will most likely be medium-firm.
  • But if your mattress is too firm for you, your shoulders and hips will not be properly supported and painful pressure points may develop in those areas.
  • Is it equally comfortable if you sleep on your back or your side? While many people favor one position over another throughout the night, most of us do move around quite a bit.
  • In general, a firm mattress is better for a back sleeper than a side sleeper, and a softer mattress is better for side sleepers. If you spend equal amounts of time in both positions, or on your stomach, you need to aim for the happy medium.
  • If choosing an innerspring mattress, are the springs in the right place? Some mattresses provide extra coils or thicker ones in certain areas of the mattress to provide more support where the manufacturers figure you need it the most — your hips and shoulders, for example.

    The only problem is, if you fall outside “average” in height or weight (or both) this enhanced support will hit you in all the wrong places. So if you’re either very short or very tall, or shaped differently than “average” make sure your bed supports you where YOU need it. When in doubt, choosing a mattress that doesn’t have variable support might be better.

Long Lasting

The best mattress in terms of comfort and support, perfect in every way, is still not enough. What will it be like three or four years down the road? Even if you experience most sublime sleep comfort, it won’t do you much good if it only lasts a year or two. That is a waste of money and resources.

So how do you find this great bed?

After evaluating which types, brands and models offer the kind of support and durability you’re looking for, it’s time to test them out in person. Find out more in the section on how to buy a mattress.

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