There’s no replacement for getting a good night’s sleep. When you sleep well, you feel better in the morning and you’re able to go about your day with energy.
The trouble is, there are plenty of things that can get in the way of a good night’s sleep. It’s tough to sleep when your bedroom is too hot, if you have a lot on your mind, or if you drank a cup of coffee too late in the afternoon. For many people, having trouble falling asleep is caused by pain and discomfort.
If you have scoliosis, you’re no stranger to back pain. What you may not realize is that sleeping on the wrong mattress can actually make your pain worse.
Changing your mattress won’t cure scoliosis, but it can relieve pressure on the spine and help you get a better night’s sleep. In this article, we’ll explore the connection between scoliosis, spine support, and your mattress. You’ll learn what to look for in a new mattress and see our top picks for the best mattress for scoliosis and back pain.
What is the Best Mattress for Scoliosis?
- Best Overall: Leesa Hybrid
- Best Budget-Friendly: Ecosa
- Best Luxury: PlushBeds
- Best for Allergy Sufferers: Zenhaven by Saatva
- Best for Adjustable Bases: Nectar
- Best for Customization: Saatva Solaire
- Best for Stomach Sleepers: Loom & Leaf
- Best for Side Sleepers: Layla Hybrid
- Best for Back Sleepers: Amerisleep AS2
- Best for Combination Sleepers: Puffy Lux
- Best for Hot Sleepers: Bear Pro
What Does Scoliosis Look Like?
About 3% of adolescents in the United States have a condition called scoliosis which is characterized by a sideways curvature of the spine. This curvature usually develops during a growth spurt just before puberty, though it can also be caused by conditions like cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy.
In most cases, scoliosis is mild. As the child or adolescent continues to grow, however, spinal deformities can worsen, and the condition can become disabling. Severe cases of spinal curvature can even reduce the amount of space in the chest, making it difficult for the lungs to function correctly.
Here are some of the symptoms of scoliosis:
- Uneven shoulders
- One shoulder blade more prominent than another
- Uneven waist
- One hip higher than the other
- Ribs sticking out more on one side
- Signs of a rotation in the spine
- Chronic back pain
Unfortunately, doctors are only able to identify a cause for scoliosis in about 20% of cases. These cases are typically divided into two types of scoliosis: congenital and neurological. Scoliosis may also be categorized as structural or nonstructural.
Treatment Options for Scoliosis
Diagnosing scoliosis typically isn’t very complicated because the symptoms tend to be outwardly visible. A physical exam of the spine is the first step to check for spinal curvature and findings can be confirmed and evaluated using imaging tests like x-ray, MRI, CT, and bone scan.
The treatment options for scoliosis depend largely on the patient’s age and the degree of curvature. The two primary options are bracing and surgery.
The biggest difference between these two treatment options is that bracing is generally done to prevent the curvature from getting worse while surgery might provide some degree of correction. Bracing is usually only recommended in cases where the curvature is more than 25 degrees and surgery when the curvature is over 40 degrees.
The long-term outlook for scoliosis patients depends largely on the degree of curvature. In mild cases of scoliosis, the condition may not affect daily function while more severe cases may lead to limitations.
What Type of Mattress Should You Consider?
The NIH estimates that as many as 80% of adults suffer from acute or chronic back pain. As a scoliosis sufferer, you are no stranger to back pain but just because you may not be able to cure your scoliosis doesn’t mean you have to live with the pain.
Getting a good night’s sleep makes all the difference in the world for both your mental and physical health. When it comes to quality sleep, it’s all about support and comfort. When your body is supported, you’ll be more comfortable, and when you feel comfortable, you’ll be more likely to sleep. Support is more than just holding up your body, however – it’s also about relieving pressure and keeping your spine in proper alignment. That’s where the real benefits for your scoliosis come in.
Scoliosis is characterized by a sideways curvature of the spine, so you may not be able to hope for perfect spinal alignment when you sleep. That being said, finding a mattress that relieves pressure may take some of the strain off your back to relieve pain.
There are many different kinds of mattresses out there and there might not be a single best mattress for back pain. Before you start shopping, take the time to learn about the options.
Here are the different types of mattresses available:
- Innerspring – The traditional mattress most people are familiar with, this mattress has a coil base. Most traditional innerspring mattresses have a continuous coil base.
- Pocket Coils – Modern spring mattresses utilize individual coils called pocket coils which are often individually encased. These offer improved motion isolation over continuous coils.
- Memory Foam – This material conforms to the contours of the body, cradling it to provide pressure point relief. Specialized foams may be infused with materials like copper or gel for the added cooling benefits, as traditional memory foam sometimes traps heat.
- Latex – Similar to memory foam in its contouring properties, latex can be all-natural or synthetic and it tends to have a little less sink and more bounce. It also sleeps a little bit cooler.
- Pillow Top – Any type of mattress can incorporate a pillow top which adds height and plush comfort to the top of the mattress.
- Hybrid – These mattresses combine two different materials, typically a spring base with a top made of memory foam or latex.
Now that you have a better understanding of the different types of mattresses, you may have an idea which one is the right choice for you. There might not be a single best mattress for back and neck pain from scoliosis but choosing a mattress that provides support and pressure relief is a good start.
Take what you’ve learned here and consider which type of mattress you prefer. From there, you can start shopping around to find the best mattress at the best price. Read on to see our recommendations.
The Best Mattresses for Scoliosis
Many experts suggest memory foam mattresses for back pain because they offer excellent pressure relief. Some people dislike the sinking feeling of memory foam, however, or find that they sleep too hot. Latex is a similar option that offers a little more bounce, or you might prefer a hybrid mattress that pairs a memory foam top with a spring base.
Consider the different types of mattresses discussed above and think about your preferences for things like contouring, firmness, and motion isolation to make your final choice.
Here are our top picks for the best mattresses for scoliosis we think you should consider:
Best Overall: When you suffer from scoliosis, it’s unlikely that a mattress will magically be able to align your spine. What you really need to look for is a mattress that adjusts to your body, relieving pressure where needed and providing support everywhere else. We like the Leesa Hybrid mattress for this reason because it combines the support of a pocket spring base with the pressure relief of premium foam.
The Leesa Hybrid mattress may cost a little more than the average mattress, but it’s well worth the price. This mattress features a supportive base of over 1,000 individual springs that respond to your movement as well as your sleeping style. You’ll enjoy a top layer of hole-punched foam for cooling, contouring comfort, and a soft, breathable cover. This mattress is rated medium-firm which is ideal for back pain sufferers and it comes with a risk-free 100-night sleep trial as an added bonus for you.
- Pros: Designed for comfort and support, luxury hybrid design, stabilizing pocket coil base
- Cons: More expensive than all-foam mattresses
Best Budget-Friendly: The last thing you want to do is spend a small fortune on a mattress without being sure you’re going to like it. The Ecosa mattress is the perfect solution because it is highly affordable, customizable, and it comes with a 100-night trial. This is one of the few mattresses on the market that enables you to adjust the mattress to three different levels of firmness.
The Ecosa mattress is an all-foam mattress that gives you the option to switch between medium, medium-firm, or firm simply by flipping the layers. No matter which level you choose, Ecosa is engineered to support the spine’s natural alignment which means a more relaxing, restorative sleep for you. This mattress features multiple layers of G-7 gel memory foam, ergonomic support foam, and ECO-Tex memory foam, all wrapped in a waterproof inner cover AND a removable Tencel cover. Plus, each layer features pincore holes or deep channels to promote maximum airflow to keep you cool at night.
- Pros: Adjustable for three levels of firmness, engineered for spine alignment, dual cover design
- Cons: Flipping the layers can be tricky, somewhat lacking in edge support
Best Luxury: When you want the best of the best for your body, you should consider going natural. PlushBeds offers several options in high-quality mattresses made with certified and organic materials. We are particularly fond of their latex mattresses like the Botanical Bliss model for scoliosis sufferers because they offer excellent pressure relief and two levels of firmness: medium or medium-firm.
The PlushBeds Botanical Bliss mattress is made with an organic cotton cover for breathable comfort with the added benefit of temperature-regulating New Zealand wool. The core of this mattress is made up of three layers of natural, organic Dunlop latex which delivers the optimal degree of support and pressure relief. PlushBeds has the secret to a perfect night’s sleep and it comes with a risk-free 100-night trial as well as a generous 25-year warranty. It may cost a little more, but it’s well worth it.
- Pros: Made with organic and natural materials, two levels of firmness, comfort and support
- Cons: Significantly more expensive than other models
Best for Allergy Sufferers: Getting a good night’s sleep all comes down to comfort. When your body and spine are supporting, you’re more likely to be comfortable but you might still struggle to fall asleep if your allergies are acting up. If you’re looking for a comfortable, supportive mattress created with allergy sufferers in mind, consider the Zenhaven mattress by Saatva.
The Zenhaven mattress is made from 100% natural Talalay latex and other organic and natural materials. This mattress delivers targeted spinal support with 5-zone technology, keeping your spine firmly supported where you need it without creating pressure in other areas. Organic cotton and New Zealand wool support the cooling benefits of Talalay latex and this mattress is naturally hypoallergenic, antimicrobial, and free from harmful chemicals. Plus, it includes a 120-night home trial as well as free white glove delivery. What more could you ask for?
- Pros: Made from natural and organic materials, flippable design with 2 firmness levels, no off-gassing
- Cons: Significantly more expensive than many models, neither side may be ideal for side sleepers
Best for Adjustable Bases: Scoliosis sufferers often find it difficult to find a perfectly comfortable sleeping position. Putting a pillow under your shoulder blades or between your knees might help, but it’s not an all-night solution. An adjustable bed gives you the option to elevate certain parts of the bed to create the ideal combination of comfort and support. We recommend the Nectar mattress for adjustable bases.
The Nectar mattress is an all-foam mattress that gives you the experience of sleeping on a cloud. This mattress features two layers of gel memory foam paired with a Tencel fabric cover to wick away moisture and keep you cool all night long. It’s all placed on top of a stabilizing base layer which delivers plenty of spinal support, finished with a quilted memory foam topper. You’ll also be glad to know this mattress comes with a 365-night trial period so you can test it for a full year. You’ll enjoy free shipping and returns as well, plus a forever warranty.
- Pros: Long 365-night trial period, multi-layer foam construction, comfort and support
- Cons: May not be firm enough for heavy sleepers, foam may be slow to respond
Best for Customization: The trouble with scoliosis is that it tends to get worse over time. The mattress that was perfectly comfortable a few years ago might not be now, and it may not be long until even a new mattress stops feeling just right. If you’re looking for a mattress that offers complete customization, consider the Solaire mattress from Saatva.
The Saatva Solaire mattress is the most precise bed ever made. Choose from 50 different firmness options and adjust the mattress at the touch of a button. This mattress is made up of 6 luxurious layers, starting with an organic pillow top. Next comes a buoyant, responsive layer of 5-zone Talalay latex over a contouring layer of gel-infused memory foam. In the middle of the mattress you have layers of moisture barrier to protect against bacteria growth followed by vulcanized air chambers that support your body from head to toe, no matter the firmness level. Finally, the in-rail inflator that controls the firmness level is built right into the Power Edge enclosure.
No matter which firmness level feels right to you, the Solaire mattress from Saatva makes it a reality at the touch of a button. Enjoy a 120-night home trial and free white glove delivery and setup.
- Pros: Three firmness levels to choose from, luxury hybrid construction, breathable and supportive
- Cons: Hybrid mattresses tend to be fairly heavy, less contouring/hugging than foam mattresses
Best for Stomach Sleepers: If sleeping on your back makes your scoliosis pain worse, you may find that sleeping on your stomach is a little more comfortable. The trouble with this sleeping position is that inadequate support may allow your hips to sink, increasing the pressure on your lower back. Luckly, the Loom & Leaf mattress by Saatva prevents this from happening.
The Loom & Leaf mattress is our top pick for stomach sleepers with scoliosis because it provides the perfect combination of support and pressure relief. This mattress comes in two firmness levels – Firm and Relaxed Firm – which is ideal for stomach sleepers. Plus, the all-foam construction offers just enough pressure relief to keep you comfortable without compromising on support. This mattress comes with an organic quilted cotton cover, a 120-night sleep trial, and 0% APR financing.
- Pros: Made with premium materials, two firmness levels to choose from, designed for adjustable bases
- Cons: Fairly expensive compared to many models, may be too firm for some users
Best for Side Sleepers: Sleeping on your side helps take some of the pressure off your back, but it directs the pressure elsewhere – your hips and shoulders. If you suffer from scoliosis, it’s extra important to keep the spine supported but you still need some cushioning to prevent pressure points. The Layla Hybrid mattress is our top pick for the best mattress for back pain in side sleepers because it delivers on these things.
The Layla Hybrid mattress is completely unique. Not only does it combine the support of pocketed coils with the comfort of foam, but it is a dual-sided mattress that enables you to choose from two firmness levels simply by flipping the mattress over. This mattress utilizes Max Airflow support foam and copper-gel memory foam to keep you cool and comfortable all night long while the pocketed coil core keeps you supported. This mattress comes with a 120-night sleep trial and a 10-year warranty.
- Pros: Two-sided design with dual firmness levels, pocket coil supportive core, cooling and pressure relief
- Cons: Somewhat more expensive than the foam model, may be too soft for stomach sleepers
Best for Back Sleepers: Sleeping on your back is the best position to support neutral spine alignment, but you need a slightly firmer mattress to avoid creating pressure points. Amerisleep offers several mattress models and we like the AS2 for back sleepers because it’s a little on the firmer side and it provides targeted pressure relief. This combination of features makes it a great choice for scoliosis sufferers.
The AS2 mattress is uniquely designed with back sleepers in mind. It features a multi-layer foam construction and delivers medium-firm support. This mattress features plant-based Bio-PUR open-cell foam which is more breathable than traditional foam, plus it conforms to the body to relieve pain-causing pressure points. The AS2 is crafted for lasting comfort, guaranteed not to sag or develop soft spots. Plus, the open-cell design keeps you cool at night with the added comfort of a soft, breathable cover. All Amerisleep mattresses ship free and come with a 100-night sleep trial.
- Pros: Made with high-quality materials, designed for cooling comfort, targeted pressure relief
- Cons: May be too firm for some side sleepers, has less bounce than an innerspring mattress
Best for Combination Sleepers: Back pain makes it difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position, so you may find yourself tossing and turning throughout the night. If you don’t tend to sleep in the same position each night, you may not know which type of mattress is best. You need something supportive that provides plenty of pressure relief, but you need the materials to respond quickly enough to changes in position.
The Puffy Lux is a great option for combination sleepers because it delivers the ideal combination of contouring and support without swallowing you up. This mattress features four layers of premium foam materials, including an exclusive layer of Body Adapting Dual Cloud Foam. The mattress is rated 5-7 on the firmness scale and it offers balanced support and contouring for enhanced spine alignment. It has a luxury cover and comes with a lifetime warranty and a 101-night sleep trial.
- Pros: Designed for cooling comfort and support, climate-adaptive materials, strong pressure relief
- Cons: Significantly more expensive than many models, may not be firm enough for stomach sleepers
Best for Hot Sleepers: When you’re already suffering from back pain, overheating just makes things worse. Memory foam mattresses tend to trap body heat, making you feel like you’re being swallowed by your mattress and drowned in heat. If you’re looking for a mattress that keeps you cool but you’re not willing to compromise when it comes to comfort and support, the Bear Pro mattress might be right for you.
This mattress is one of the newest offerings from Bear and it is rated 6.5/10 in firmness – this is perfect for back pain sufferers. The Bear Pro is made with copper and gel foams which whisk away unwanted body heat in addition to providing natural antiviral and antibacterial benefits. This mattress takes the pressure off your back, hips, and shoulders, cradling you in comfort without keeping you from moving around, and you can rest easy knowing the materials are all CertiPUR-US Certified. Every mattress comes with a 100-night risk-free trial with free shipping and returns.
- Pros: Copper-infused foam for cooling comfort, medium-firm feel, compatible with all foundations
- Cons: May be too firm for some sleepers, may not be supportive enough for very heavy sleepers
When you have scoliosis, getting a good night’s sleep isn’t always easy. Switching to a more supportive mattress that matches your comfort preferences could help.
There may not be a singular best mattress for scoliosis, but there are plenty of mattresses out there to choose from. It really comes down to your preferred sleeping position, though additional factors like body weight, comfort preferences, and needs for motion isolation may factor in.
Take what you’ve learned here about the different mattress types and what factors to think about, then consider the recommendations we’ve made. Good luck!
Frequently Asked Questions
- Is memory foam good for scoliosis? – Memory foam is the most commonly recommended mattress material for back pain sufferers. Because this material hugs the body, it conforms to your contours which relieves pressure points like the shoulders and hips. By relieving pressure, it takes the strain off your spine which may reduce your pain. In many cases, the best mattress for back pain is memory foam or its natural alternative, latex.
- Is a firm mattress better for scoliosis? – The best mattress for scoliosis is one that provides enough support for your spine. The right level of firmness depends largely on your preferred sleeping position and partially on your preference for comfort. The worst thing you can do is choose a mattress that is too soft – if the mattress sinks too much, it will create or worsen pressure points that may contribute to back and neck pain. The best mattress for neck pain and scoliosis is generally medium-firm or firmer, depending on your preferred sleeping position.
- What is the best sleeping position for scoliosis? – Every case of scoliosis is different, so the sleeping position you find comfortable may not work for someone else. Generally speaking, sleeping on your back is the best for spine alignment but it really depends on the degree to which your spine is curved and what you find comfortable. If you like to sleep on your back, a medium-firm mattress should work well. Stomach sleepers may need something a little firmer while side sleepers may need something a little softer.
- What is the best pillow for scoliosis? – If you suffer from scoliosis, choosing the wrong pillow could be just as bad as choosing the wrong mattress. For scoliosis curvature in the upper back, try placing a thin scoliosis pillow under your shoulder blades to relieve pressure. If you sleep on your side, placing a pillow between your knees may help.
- Are adjustable beds good for scoliosis? – Choosing the right mattress is important if you have scoliosis or back pain because it all really comes down to lumbar support. The trouble with scoliosis is that the spine may not exhibit the typical curve – being able to adjust your bed to keep the spine in proper alignment might help improve blood circulation, reduce inflammation, and relieve pain. An adjustable bed enables you to elevate your head and knees to support the natural curvature of a healthy spine. If you sleep on your side, being able to adjust your bed enables you to reduce pressure points on the hips and shoulders.