According to the American Chiropractic Association, roughly 31 million adults in the U.S. experience frequent or chronic back pain. The condition also accounts for more than 260 million missed workdays each year. Although a wide range of treatments for back pain are available, many people can alleviate their day-to-day symptoms by choosing a more comfortable and supportive mattress.

The best mattress for back pain for any given sleeper depends on a number of factors, including their body type and normal sleep position. Ideally, a mattress should conform to the body, improve spinal alignment, and keep sleepers on an even plane without sagging too much. Due to material and design differences, certain mattress types tend to provide better back pain and pressure relief than others.

Here we'll explore qualities and features that define the best bed for back pain. Our top mattresses for back pain among models sold today are listed below. We'll also explain how to choose a good mattress for back pain based on composition, sleep position, and other variables.

Our Top Picks

Bear Hybrid – Best for Lower Back Pain and Recovery
  • Mattress Type: Hybrid
  • Firmness Level: Medium Firm (6)
  • Price: $1,390
Saatva – Best for Upper Back and Neck Pain
  • Mattress Type: Innerspring
  • Firmness Level: Medium Soft (4), Medium Firm (6), Firm (7.5)
  • Price: $1,199
Nest Bedding Alexander Hybrid – Best Customized Firmness
  • Mattress Type: Hybrid
  • Firmness Level: Soft (2-3), Medium (5), Firm (7-8)
  • Price: $1,299
T&N Original Mattress – Best Budget
  • Mattress Type: Foam
  • Firmness Level: Medium Firm (6.5)
  • Price: $595
Level Sleep – Best All Foam
  • Mattress Type: Foam
  • Firmness Level: Head/Shoulders – Soft (3); Torso – Firm (7); Hips/Legs – Medium (5)
  • Price: $1,199
Tempur-Pedic Adapt – Best Memory Foam
  • Mattress Type: Foam
  • Firmness Level: Medium (5)
  • Price: $2,199

Bear Hybrid – Best for Lower Back Pain and Recovery

Price: $1,390

Height: 14"

Firmness: Medium Firm (6)

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Pressure Point Relief: 4/5

Sleeps Cool: 4/5

Motion Isolation: 3/5

Edge Support: 3/5

Durability: 3/5

Ease of Movement: 4/5

Sex: 4/5

Off-Gassing: 4/5

bear hybrid mattress

Highlights:

  • Pocketed coils provide strong support and temperature neutrality
  • Conforming foam layers cushion the body and alleviate pressure
  • Celliant cover designed to help the body recover after physical activities

Ideal For:

  • Every type of sleeper (back, side, stomach, combination)
  • Hot sleepers
  • Physically active people

Bear specializes in mattresses and sleep products geared toward physically active people. Their current line of beds includes the Bear Hybrid, which is constructed with two foam comfort layers and a pocketed coil support core. The mattress has a medium firm feel. Its foam layers conform to the body in order to alleviate discomfort in the back and other sensitive areas, such as the shoulders and hips.

The mattress is ideal for any sleeper who prefers a mid-level firmness. Side sleepers receive ample padding for their bodies, which can improve their spinal alignment and alleviate pressure points. Back, stomach, and combination sleepers in most weight groups should experience a good balance of body-conforming and support with little to no sagging. Another standout feature of the mattress is its cover made with Celliant fabric, a material designed to convert body heat into infrared energy and retransmit this energy back into sleepers. This process can increase tissue oxygenation, regulate body temperature, and alleviate bodily discomfort.

However, the Bear Hybrid may not be as suitable for couples. The mattress is fairly responsive and does not isolate motion very well. The coils may also produce disruptive squeaks. And although the mattress offers adequate support for most sleepers, heavier stomach sleepers may sag excessively.

The Bear Hybrid is very reasonably priced for a bed of this type. The company also offers free shipping within the contiguous U.S., along with a 100-night sleep trial and 20-year warranty for the mattress.


Saatva – Best for Upper Back and Neck Pain

Price: $1,199

Height: 11.5" or 14.5"

Firmness: Three Options - Medium Soft (4); Medium Firm (6); Firm (7.5)

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Pressure Point Relief: 4/5

Sleeps Cool: 4/5

Motion Isolation: 3/5 (Soft) and 2/5 (Medium Firm, Firm)

Edge Support: 3/5 (Soft) and 4/5 (Medium Firm, Firm)

Durability: 4/5

Ease of Movement: 4/5

Sex: 4/5

Off-Gassing: 5/5

saatva mattress

Highlights:

  • Innovative and supportive coil-on-coil design
  • Strong airflow ensures consistent temperature neutrality

Ideal For:

  • Sleepers who prefer a firmer option
  • Sleepers weighing more than 230 pounds
  • Combination sleepers

The Saatva is a luxury innerspring model with a Euro-top cover containing comfort layers of memory foam and polyfoam. The mattress also features transitional pocketed minicoils over a support core of recycled-steel Bonnell coils. This coil-on-coil design results in a very responsive and springy surface. Both coil layers also circulate air very well to help the mattress maintain a comfortable temperature.

Customers can choose from three different firmness levels for their Saatva: medium soft (4), medium firm (6), or firm (7.5). This selection ensures most people can find a comfortable, supportive option regardless of their body type or sleep position. The softer firmness levels offer more cushioning for the body, which may be beneficial for lighter people and side sleepers with back pain, while the firm option provides strong support for heavier individuals. The Saatva is also available with an 11.5-inch or 14.5-inch profile.

Although the Saatva provides better body-conforming than most competing innersprings, it may be too responsive for people who like sinking deeply into their mattress. The surface also isolates a minimal amount of motion, so co-sleepers may notice more transfer when their partner moves around in bed.

Saatva offers free White Glove delivery within the contiguous U.S. This service includes in-home assembly and old mattress removal. The mattress is backed by a 120-night sleep trial and a 15-year warranty.

Read Our Full Saatva Mattress Review


Nest Bedding Alexander Signature Hybrid – Best Customized Firmness

Price: $1,299

Height: 13"

Firmness: Reversible - Medium (5) and Firm (7-8)

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Pressure Point Relief: 4/5

Sleeps Cool: 2/5 (Soft) and 3/5 (Medium, Firm)

Motion Isolation: 4/5

Edge Support: 2/5 (Soft) and 3/5 (Medium, Firm)

Durability: 4/5

Ease of Movement: 2/5 (Soft) and 3/5 (Medium, Firm)

Sex: 2/5 (Soft) and 3/5 (Medium, Firm)

Off-Gassing: 3/5

Nest Bedding Signature Hybrid Mattress

Highlights:

  • Phase-change material helps keep the surface cool
  • Thick comfort layers cradle the body to alleviate aches and pains
  • Strong pocketed coils reinforce the edges, resulting in less sinkage when getting in and out of bed

Ideal For:

  • Sleepers looking for a customizable firmness option
  • Hot sleepers
  • People sleeping with a partner

The Nest Bedding Alexander Signature Hybrid features comfort layers of gel-infused memory foam and adaptive polyfoam over a pocketed coil support core. The foams provide ample cushioning for the body, specifically in the shoulders, lower back, hips, and other pressure-sensitive areas. The base layer is zoned, with low-gauge (thicker) coils reinforcing the edges while higher-gauge (thinner) coils cradle and support the sleeper's body.

The mattress is available in three firmness levels. The soft option, which rates between 2 and 3 on the 1-10 firmness scale, conforms closely to form a deep, pressure-relieving cradle for the sleeper's body. This option is best suited to lighter people, but heavier individuals will likely find it too soft and prone to sagging. The medium (5) firmness feels more balanced, with some contouring and noticeable support. This feel should be ideal for average weight sleepers of any position. Lastly, the firm (7 to 8) option conforms very little and offers very even support. Heavier people will probably find this firmness most comfortable, but it may not conform closely enough for lighter individuals – particularly side sleepers.

Thanks to the zoned coils, the Alexander Signature Hybrid should not sink too much when owners sit or lie near the edges. Strong air circulation through the coil layer ensures good overall temperature regulation – but some sleepers may still sleep warm due to body heat retention in the foam layer. The mattress is also fairly responsive, which is typical for a hybrid model, and couples may notice more motion transfer.

Compared to other luxury hybrids, the Alexander Signature Hybrid has a very low price-point. Nest Bedding offers free shipping within the contiguous U.S. and backs the mattress with a 100-night sleep trial and a lifetime warranty.


T&N Original Mattress – Best Budget

Price: $595

Height: 10"

Firmness: Medium Firm (6)

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Pressure Point Relief: 4/5

Sleeps Cool: 3/5

Motion Isolation: 4/5

Edge Support: 2/5

Durability: 3/5

Ease of Movement: 4/5

Sex: 3/5

Off-Gassing: 3/5

T&N Original Mattress

Highlights:

  • Comfortable balance of body-contouring and responsiveness
  • Open-cell foam layer is fairly breathable
  • Very good motion isolation and no noise for couples

Ideal For:

  • Budget shoppers
  • Sleepers who need better hip alignment and spine support
  • Back and stomach sleepers

The T&N Original Mattress from Tuft & Needle features an open-cell polyfoam comfort layer over a high-density foam base. The surface has a medium firm feel and the polyfoam is somewhat responsive, so sleepers won't experience the pressure-relieving body cradle of memory foam. Instead, the feeling is a combination of sleeping "on" and sleeping "in" the mattress.

The open-cell comfort layer is fairly breathable compared to the higher-density memory foams found in other mattresses. As a result, the T&N Original Mattress provides better-than-average temperature neutrality and may be suitable for people who normally sleep hot on all-foam beds. The mattress also isolates motion very well and does not produce any noise when bearing weight, making it ideal for people who awaken easily due to their co-sleeper's movements.

Due to its all-foam construction, the mattress offers ample padding for the body. Side sleepers should experience even spinal alignment and pressure relief as the material cushions their shoulders and hips. The mattress also maintains even support for most back sleepers, resulting in adequate body-conforming without excessive sinking. That said, heavier people may notice more sagging on the T&N Original Mattress. This is especially true for stomach sleepers.

The T&N Original Mattress is very inexpensive, even when compared to other all-polyfoam beds (which are generally quite affordable). Tuft & Needle ships for free anywhere in the contiguous U.S. The mattress comes with a 100-night sleep trial and a 10-year warranty.


Level Sleep – Best All Foam

Price: $1,199

Height: 11"

Firmness: Three Zones - Head/Shoulders: Soft (3); Torso: Firm (7); Hips/Legs: Medium (5)

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Pressure Point Relief: 4/5

Sleeps Cool: 3/5

Motion Isolation: 3/5

Edge Support: 3/5

Durability: 3/5

Ease of Movement: 3/5

Sex: 3/5

Off-Gassing: 3/5

Level Sleep Mattress

Highlights:

  • A zoned foam layer provides targeted support to the shoulders, back, and hips
  • Conforms to the body while also feeling fairly supportive and responsive
  • Level Sleep offers a one-year sleep trial

Ideal For:

  • Sleepers with both hip and back pain
  • People sleeping with a partner
  • Side sleepers

Many sleepers with back pain benefit from sleeping on mattresses that provide zoned support to different areas of the body in order to alleviate discomfort. The all-foam Level Sleep Mattress is a prime example. The bed's middle layer consists of adaptive polyfoam divided into three zones, each with a different firmness level. Soft foam cradles the head and neck, firm foam supports the torso, and medium foam reinforces the hips and legs. This feature is particularly well-suited to people who experience aches and pains in their lower back.

Like other all-foam beds, the Level Support Mattress is optimal for couples who experience movement-related sleep disruptions. The foam absorbs motion and eliminates most transfer, and the mattress as a whole is completely silent when bearing weight. The high-density base foam is fairly thick, and this helps to stabilize the mattress and prevent sleepers from sagging too much.

The Level Sleep Mattress is best suited to side sleepers across different body types, as well as average weight back and stomach sleepers. Lighter back and stomach sleepers may not experience enough body-conforming, especially around the midsection where the firmest foam is located, while heavier sleepers who use these positions may sag a bit too much around the head, neck, and legs.

The Level Sleep Mattress has a reasonable price-point, given its zoned construction and strong performance. The company also offers a 365-night sleep trial and a lifetime warranty, both of which are longer than average.


Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Adapt – Best Memory Foam

Price: $2,199

Height: 11"

Firmness: Three Options - Soft (2-3); Medium (5); Firm (7-8)

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Pressure Point Relief: 4/5

Sleeps Cool: 2/5

Motion Isolation: 5/5

Edge Support: 3/5 (Soft) and 4/5 (Medium Firm, Firm)

Durability: 4/5

Ease of Movement: 2/5

Sex: 2/5

Off-Gassing: 2/5

Tempur-Adapt Mattress

Highlights:

  • Premium memory foam conforms closely to the body
  • Excellent motion isolation for co-sleepers

Ideal For:

  • Sleepers looking for a classic memory foam feel
  • Luxury mattress shoppers
  • Shoppers looking for hassle-free delivery and setup

Tempur-Pedic helped popularize memory foam mattresses more than 20 years ago, and the company continues to offer high-quality beds. The TEMPUR-Adapt all-foam mattress is particularly well-suited to people with back pain due to its premium memory foam comfort layer and mid-level firmness. Most sleepers sink deeply into the mattress and experience a close, pressure-relieving body hug. This makes TEMPUR-Adapt a good choice for lighter people with aches and pains, but heavier individuals may find the mattress too soft.

Like other Tempur-Pedic mattresses, the TEMPUR-Adapt is very durable and withstands early deterioration very well. Owners should not experience the same loss of shape that occurs with lower-quality memory foam beds. The mattress also provides excellent motion isolation and does not produce any noise, so couples will experience fewer sleep disruptions.

Like other memory foam mattresses, the TEMPUR-Adapt may absorb body heat and sleep somewhat warm. Edge support is also minimal, so owners may notice some sinkage when getting in and out of bed. If edge support and temperature neutrality are major issues for customers, they should consider the TEMPUR-Adapt hybrid – which features a pocketed coil support core – instead of its all-foam counterpart.

The TEMPUR-Adapt is fairly pricey. To offset these costs a bit, Tempur-Pedic offers free White Glove delivery anywhere in the contiguous U.S. This service includes in-home assembly and old mattress removal.


What Type of Mattress is Best for Back Pain?

The best mattress for back and neck pain depends largely on the sleeper's body type and preferred sleep position.

What is the Best Bed for Back Pain According to Body Weight?

Sleepers who weigh less than 130 pounds and experience regular pain typically need a softer mattress to alleviate their symptoms. Firmer beds may not conform closely enough to reduce aches and pains in their sensitive areas.

People with back pain who weigh 130 to 230 pounds may want to consider a mattress with mid-level firmness. Medium soft to medium firm beds provide a balanced feel by conforming to the body while maintaining even support.

Firm mattresses are best suited to sleepers who weigh more than 230 pounds, many of whom sink excessively on softer bed models. Lighter people may not experience enough body-conforming on firm beds to reduce their pain and pressure points. Excessively firm beds can even cause added discomfort for lighter individuals.

What About Sleeping Position?

For sleep positions, side sleepers often benefit from softer mattresses. This sleeping position can cause poor spinal alignment, and a bed that conforms closely will cushion the shoulders and hips in order to align the back more evenly. Back and stomach sleepers may need more support to prevent their bodies from sinking too deeply. As a result, many people who use these positions prefer mid-level to firm feels.

What is the Best Memory Foam Mattress for Back Pain?

Memory foam is considered one of the best materials for back pain relief due to its close body-conforming. The material is designed to become softer when exposed to body heat, allowing the foam to form a tight, pressure-relieving cradle around the sleeper. As they slowly sink into the mattress surface, the foam cradles the body and evenly distributes their weight. This can reduce aches and pains in the back and other areas, and also improve spinal alignment for side sleepers.

Memory foam quality and density are important factors for choosing the best mattress for back problems. Two of our top picks – the Nest Bedding Alexander Signature Hybrid and Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR-Adapt – feature comfort layers of premium memory foam that is fairly dense and durable. Low-density memory foam tends to deteriorate and develop body impressions somewhat quickly. These impressions can affect how supportive the mattress feels and may lead to added discomfort for sleepers with back pain.

What Type of Mattress is Best for Upper Back Pain?

A mattress with zoned layers can be very helpful for those with regular pain around the neck, shoulders, and upper back. Zoned layers are designed with distinct firmness levels for different areas of the body. Typically, these components provide soft cradling for the head, neck, and shoulders, and feel firmer beneath the lower back and hips for added spinal support. Some mattresses have zoned comfort and transitional layers made of foam, latex, or minicoils. Other beds feature zoned coil systems in the support core with different coil gauges, or thicknesses, for enhanced sleeper and edge support.

Pillow choice is another important factor for people with upper back pain. Those who sleep on their sides can use a foam pillow to alleviate their symptoms. Their head and neck sink into the foam, and this helps to ensure even spinal alignment. Back sleepers, on the other hand, should consider an orthopedic pillow with a contoured shape that cradles the head and reduces discomfort around the neck and shoulders.

Lastly, mattress shoppers should take durability into account. Beds made with low-grade foam, synthetic latex, and other materials of questionable quality begin to wear out more quickly than those with denser and more resilient layers. This can cause the comfort layers to lose shape over time, resulting in less support for the upper back.

What about Lower Back Pain?

People who experience regular aches and pains in the lumbar (lower back) region and hips should choose a mattress that provides enhanced support to these areas. The best mattress for lower back pain should conform to the body while keeping sleepers on an even plane with little to no sagging.

As is the case for people with upper back pain, those with lower back pain may find a zoned mattress most comfortable. Zones with medium, medium firm, or firm feels offer the best support for the lumbar region. If the mattress feels too soft around these areas, sleepers may sink too deeply and experience added discomfort in the midsection.

Several recent studies have sought to determine the best bed for lower back pain. In one 2017 study, researchers found that latex mattresses alleviated more pressure in the back and buttocks than beds made with foam layers. Another study noted improvements in lower back pain for sleepers who tested out prescribed mattresses based on their normal sleep position. A third study found people experienced more relief for lower back pain symptoms when sleeping on medium firm mattresses as opposed to sleeping on firm models.

Can Changing Your Sleeping Position Relieve Back Pain?

Sleep position plays an important role in back pain management. The side, back, and stomach sleeping positions are each associated with different types of back pain, but certain strategies can alleviate symptoms for sleepers.

Side sleeping is very common, but this position can lead to poor spinal alignment – especially if the mattress is too soft or too firm. According to the Mayo Clinic, side sleepers can reduce pressure on their back by placing a pillow between their legs and tucking both knees toward their chest at a 90-degree angle. Although side sleepers tend to prefer softer mattresses, they should choose a bed that aligns the spine with proper support around the shoulders and hips.

For back sleepers who experience regular pain, the Mayo Clinic notes a pillow placed beneath the knees can be very effective for alleviating symptoms. The sleeper's neck pillow is another important factor. Pillows that are too thin may cause the head and neck to dip back too far. Thicker pillows elevate the head and neck to keep these areas aligned with the spine. Additionally, people tend to snore more when their head is not elevated properly.

Stomach sleeping is associated with more aches and pains than the other two positions. Sleeping face-down can cause the sleeper's torso and legs to sink too deeply into the mattress while the head remains on an even plane. Shoulder and neck pain may occur as a result. The Mayo Clinic recommends stomach sleepers place a pillow beneath their lower abdomen to reduce pressure on the lower back and prevent excessive sinking. A pillow beneath the neck can also alleviate aches and pains, provided the pillow doesn't create added discomfort in the upper back.

If you're a side sleeper with back pain...

The best mattress for side sleepers with back pain will cushion the shoulders and hips in order to align the spine. Side sleepers usually prefer soft to medium firm mattresses, depending on how much they weigh. A pillow between the knees can reduce pressure on the lower back, as well.

If you're a combination sleeper with back pain...

Combination sleepers with back pain can minimize their symptoms by following certain routines with each position. When side sleeping, they should ensure the their shoulders and hips are properly supported. Back sleeping may require a pillow under the knees to reduce pressure in the back and hips, and a pillow under the lower abdomen can stomach sleeping can alleviate aches and pains in the same areas.

If you're a back sleeper with back pain...

The best mattress for back sleepers with regular pain conforms to the body while keeping the sleeper on an even plane. A medium soft to medium firm mattress is best suited to lighter back sleepers. For heavier individuals, a firmer mattress will provide better support and sag less.