I want to share with you 3 simple and really important ways to see if your bed might be causing your low back pain.
1 – The obvious one, you toss and turn throughout the night and wake up feeling stiff and sore.
2 – Check the static health of your mattress by laying a flat piece of timber from corner to corner across your mattress. Check the length of the timber with a ruler looking for areas the mattress might fall away from timber. In these areas, use a ruler to measure the distance the mattress has moved away from the ruler. You want to have removed all sheets and coverings from your mattress before doing this.
3 – Check the support level of your mattress by laying on your side on your mattress and have someone take a photo from behind.
Whilst tossing and turning can be a sign of many things, including sleep apnoea, a mattress that fails to correctly support can drive many problems. Muscular contraction all night to accommodate support loss leads to stiffness, aches and discomfort. We often deal with this by tossing and turning all night in an attempt to relieve muscular contraction.
Sagging or dropping of a mattress can be a sign of mattress wear. We often see drops as little as 3-4cm being enough to create lower back pain in some individuals.
When laying on your side, your spine should remain perfectly straight. A mattress that is to firm will tend to not allow the shoulders or pelvis to sink in enough creating a bowing affect of the spine. Likewise a mattress that is too soft will cause the shoulders or pelvis to sink too much also resulting in a bowing if the spine.
Bowing or bending of the spine can lead to musculature contraction all night creating fatigue, pain and ongoing muscular dysfunction throughout the day.
If you’re unsure about the health of your mattress, there are specific muscular fatigue patterns we see in patients with poor bedding support. A quick assessment can often provide insight as to whether you mattress might be causing ongoing problems for your back.