What Mattress Thickness Should I Buy?
When looking for the perfect mattress upgrade, there are a number of factors you need to consider including price point, size, comfort level, firmness and thickness. Arguably, one of the most important aspects of your new mattress is its thickness. The mattress thickness can almost single handedly determine whether or not a mattress will work for you. Sleeping on a mattress that is either too thin or too thick can affect your quality of sleep and ultimately impact your overall health and wellness. In this guide, we go under the covers to identify the various levels of mattress thickness and how to accurately determine what mattress thickness is best for you.
Mattresses are constructed with multiple layers that ultimately determine the thickness, or the depth, and the firmness of the mattress. Most mattresses have at least two layers, the comfort layer and the support layer, while more luxurious mattresses may have three layers or more.
The base layer of your mattress, also called a support layer, serves as the foundation for your mattress construction, providing both durability and support. A thick support layer prevents premature mattress sagging. We recommended that this foundation layer measures, at minimum, five or six inches in height. In high-quality memory foam mattresses, this layer can make up at least 50% of the overall mattress thickness.
The comfort layers are the plush top layers of the mattress. The comfort layers are not as thick as the base layer, typically measuring in at only two or three inches per layer. However, these two or three inches of foam contribute to spinal alignment, amount of pressure relief, and motion isolation. If comfort layers are too thin, your mattress will not provide enough support to keep your spine in a healthy alignment or provide adequate pressure relief. When someone sleeps on a mattress that is not supportive enough, their health can suffer.
Breakdown of Mattress Thickness
Mattresses are actually separated into categories based on thickness. These five categories are:
- Low Profile: 2 to 5 inches
- Slim Profile: 5 to 8 inches
- Standard Profile: 8 to 12 inches
- Deep/Thick Profile: 12 to 16 Inches
- Extra Deep/Thick Profile: More than 16 inches
It is important to note that every BedInABox® mattress measures more than 9 inches in thickness being that most high-quality mattresses fall between 8 and 14 inches thick.
What to Consider When Choosing Your Mattress Thickness
People are often guided by the belief that thicker is better. While this is true to a certain extent, everyone has different sleep preferences. In order to find the perfect mattress thickness, you need to consider your own unique sleep needs. Such considerations may include:
- Sleep Position: Different positions sleep better with different levels of mattress thickness. Certain sleeping positions need more cushion while others require more support. For example, side sleepers generally need 11 to 14 inches of mattress thickness to provide enough cushion to their hips and shoulders. On the other hand, back sleepers generally need 10- to 12-inch-thick mattresses to support and align their spines. Stomach sleepers need 10-inch-thick mattresses to provide comfort for their fronts and adequate support for their backs.
- Body Type/Weight: Sleepers weighing less than 130 pounds need mattresses 12 inches tall or thicker. Sleepers weighing between 130 pounds to 230 pounds may choose between 10- to 12-inch-thick mattresses. Sleepers weighing above 230 pounds should invest in 12- to 14-inch-thick mattresses. Additional mattress thickness helps greater weight to be more evenly supported by the mattress.
- Medical Conditions: Medical Conditions: People suffering from certain medical conditions such as back pain may also need firmer mattresses. Mattresses in the 8-to-12-inch range are great for back pain, as these beds are firm enough to support your back while soft enough to conform to your spine’s natural alignment. Those with arthritis, shoulder pain, or hip pain should look at mattresses 12 to 14 inches thick for enhanced cushioning that better relieves pressure from these areas.