Pregnancy is a time of rapid change for most women. Not only are your hormones raging but your body is changing in size and shape over the next 9 months.
- Multi-layer foam construction
- Comfort and support
When you become pregnant, the early stages are flooded with excitement – at least, until the morning sickness kicks in. As you start to gain weight, however, you’ll experience common issues like muscle pain, joint aches, and trouble sleeping. A restful night of sleep is all you really want when you feel like your body is out to get you, but it can be hard to come by when you’re growing another human.
If you’re having trouble sleeping during pregnancy, you might consider upgrading your mattress. A new mattress might just be the change you need to finally feel comfortable enough at night to sleep.
In this article, we’ll explore the challenges of sleeping during pregnancy and provide you will some simple tips. You’ll learn what to look for when shopping for a new mattress as well and see our top picks for the best mattress for pregnancy.
What is the Best Mattress for Pregnancy?
- Best Overall: Puffy Lux
- Best Budget-Friendly: Nectar
- Best Luxury: Loom & Leaf
- Best Memory Foam: WinkBed MemoryLux
- Best Gel Foam: Aslan
- Best for Couples: Helix
- Best for Cooling: Bear Hybrid
- Best Innerspring: Saatva
- Best Hybrid: Layla Hybrid
- Best Organic: PlushBeds
- Best Natural Latex: Zenhaven by Saatva
Why Is It Hard to Sleep During Pregnancy?
When you first find out you’re pregnant, you may find it difficult to sleep simply because you’re so excited. After the initial excitement wears off, however, reality settles in and you realize just how much you have to prepare for. Within a few weeks, you’ll really start to feel the changes in your body and sleep may become increasingly more difficult to obtain.
Here are some of the reasons it may be hard to sleep during pregnancy:
- Frequent need to pee. During the first trimester, increasing levels of the pregnancy hormone hCG paired with increased blood filtration may make you need to pee more during the night. In the third trimester, your growing uterus will press on your bladder and increase the urge to pee.
- Pain and discomfort. As your body changes during pregnancy, you may no longer find your typical sleeping position comfortable. Once you pass the first trimester, you shouldn’t sleep on your back because the weight of your growing uterus may interfere with circulation.
- Heartburn. Many women experience heartburn during pregnancy but it tends to worsen at night when you’re lying down, especially as the baby really starts to take up space during the last trimester.
- Pregnancy insomnia. The combination of fluctuating hormones and bodily changes can mess with your ability to fall or stay asleep. Pregnancy insomnia is the most common during the first and third trimesters.
- Leg cramps. Many women experience painful spasms in the calves during the second half of their pregnancy, possibly due to the compression of blood vessels caused by weight gain. About 15% of women experience restless legs syndrome (RLS) during their third trimester.
- Sleep apnea. A fairly common condition in general, sleep apnea can be worsened by weight gain and becomes a higher risk if you have high blood pressure or gestational diabetes.
Many expectant mothers are given the advice to “sleep while you still can.” Newborns are extremely demanding, and they don’t always follow a set schedule. Exhaustion will become a reality you can’t escape, so it’s well worth doing what you can during pregnancy to get the sleep you need.
Pregnancy Tips for Sleeping Comfortably
You need your sleep during pregnancy to rest your body and to keep your hormone levels under control. Sleep is when your body has time to process all the changes it’s going through and getting enough of it is essential for immune health and brain function. It can be difficult to sleep soundly when your body no longer feels like your own, but there are some tips you can try to make it a little easier.
Here are some tips to sleep more comfortably during pregnancy:
- Avoid caffeine as much as possible, definitely in the afternoon and evening – even the caffeine in chocolate might affect your sleep.
- Drink plenty of water during the day but start to taper off your intake in the evening and don’t drink anything right before bed.
- Include gentle exercise in your daily routine but get your workout in a few hours before bedtime so the energizing effects don’t keep you awake.
- Develop a relaxing nighttime routine to get your body ready for sleep – a soothing bath in the evening may help.
- Make sure your bedroom is cool, dark, and quiet – these are the ideal conditions for sleep, so use blackout curtains and a white noise machine if necessary.
- Don’t try to force it if you simply can’t sleep – rather than tossing and turning, get up and sit in another room for 20 minutes or so until you get tired then go back to sleep.
- Avoid spicy foods and heavy meals too close to bedtime – these things could make heartburn worse and may interfere with digestion.
Now that you have a better idea what causes sleeping problems during pregnancy and what you can do to counteract them, you may be wondering what role your mattress plays. Sleeping on the wrong mattress won’t do you any favors whether you’re pregnant or not.
Read on to learn what to look for when shopping for a new mattress.
What to Look for in a New Mattress
Mattresses come in a wide variety of models these days and it can be difficult to choose one. When you’re pregnant, what you really need is a mattress that provides the support to keep your spine in proper alignment with enough pressure relief to keep you comfortable. Memory foam is a great material to consider, but there are other factors to think about as well.
Here are some tips for choosing a new mattress:
- Look for materials that absorb pressure and conform to the contours of your body – memory foam and latex are great choices, though pocket springs work well too.
- Choose a firmness level that provides the support you need. Most people find a medium firm mattress comfortable but if you’re over 250 pounds, you may need something a little firmer.
- Make sure the mattress has a supportive base – it needs to offer enough support to keep your spine in proper alignment, no matter what kind of materials you choose.
- Consider motion isolation properties if you sleep with a partner – memory foam and pocketed coils tend to absorb motion better than traditional innerspring mattresses.
- Don’t shop by price alone but take the price of the mattress into consideration– expensive mattresses aren’t necessarily good, and it is possible to find a good mattress for a low price.
The Best Mattress for Pregnancy
As your body starts changing and adapting for the new life growing inside you, you may decide it’s time to do yourself a favor by upgrading your mattress. If your mattress is more than 7 or 8 years old, you should definitely think about a replacement. By the time your new baby comes around you won’t have the energy to make a big decision and you’ll appreciate having a comfortable, supportive bed to lie down in, even if it’s only for a few hours.
Here are our top picks for the best mattress for pregnancy:
Best Overall: The key to a restful night of sleep is finding the ideal combination of comfort and support. When you’re pregnant, that can be difficult to achieve because your body is constantly changing. Foam materials tend to adapt well to different sleeping styles and changing bodies which is why we recommend the Puffy Lux as our pick for the best mattress for pregnancy.
The Puffy Lux is a four-layer foam mattress rated 5-7 on the firmness scale that it offers balanced support and contouring for enhanced spine alignment. This mattress features four layers of premium foam materials, including an exclusive layer of Body Adapting Dual Cloud Foam which relieves pressure when and where you need it. The Puffy Lux has a high-density transition comfort layer that helps absorb motion to keep you sleeping soundly and it has a luxury cover as an added bonus.
Puffy mattresses come with a 101-night sleep trial with free returns and free shipping on all orders. You’ll enjoy a lifetime warranty as well. You’ve got nothing to lose by trying it!
- 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 very heavy sleepers
Best Budget-Friendly: You’ve probably already spent a fortune designing the nursery and stocking up on baby essentials, so you don’t want to go emptying your bank account on a new mattress. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option but you’re not willing to compromise on quality, check out Nectar. The original Nectar mattress is made from premium materials but comes at an affordable price and a generous 365-night trial so you don’t have to worry about making up your mind right away.
The Nectar mattress incorporates all the latest advances in mattress and fabric technology. This mattress utilizes two layers of gel memory foam that distribute your body weight and contour to your curves, all while circulating air to keep you cool and comfortable. It molds to your body to relieve pressure, so you feel support without pain, all night long. This mattress also comes with a Tencel cooling cover made from moisture-wicking materials. Simply put, it’s the best of the best at a reasonable price!
- 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 Luxury: You can’t put a price on a good night’s sleep, especially when the time you have to sleep becomes limited. If you’re willing to pay a little more for quality and you want luxury materials, we recommend the Loom & Leaf mattress from Saatva. This mattress features handcrafted layers of organic cotton, proprietary Spinal Zone Gel, and premium memory foam to deliver the best sleep of your life.
The Loom & Leaf mattress from Saatva comes in two firmness levels so you can choose the one that’s right for you. Relaxed firm is the sweet spot between hard and soft – it adapts well to changing sleeping positions and gives you the support you need no matter what. If you like something a little firmer, the Firm option is best. Both Loom & Leaf mattress models come with a 120-night sleep trial and the option for 0% APR financing. What could be better than that?
- 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 Memory Foam: Pressure point relief is a must when you’re pregnant, but you don’t want to give up on support. Memory foam is the perfect solution because it conforms to the contours of your body and helps keep your spine in proper alignment. Our favorite memory foam mattress for pregnancy is the WinkBed MemoryLux. Available in three firmness levels, this mattress comes with a 120-night trial and free shipping.
When you’re pregnant, there are a handful of different things that can keep you from sleep. Feeling pressure on your joints, not being able to support your back, and drowning sweat are common problems. The WinkBed MemoryLux addresses these issues and more with their patented AirFoam technology. This mattress delivers targeted lumbar support for spine alignment as well as dynamic pressure-point relief and superior motion isolation. You’ll also be glad to know the mattress sleeps cool with zero heat retention thanks to a tufted gel foam quilt that pulls heat away from the body.
- Pros: Patented AirCell foam for comfort and support, dynamic pressure-point relief, sleeps cool
- Cons: Doesn’t have enough bounce for some sleepers, could be stronger in edge support
Best Gel Foam: Memory foam is often thought of as the perfect material for pregnant sleepers because it absorbs motion, relieves pressure, and delivers support. Unfortunately, some memory foam traps heat which can make you feel warm and uncomfortable – gel foam is different. The Aslan gel foam mattress sleeps cooler than traditional memory foam and it has the added benefit of being CertiPUR-US Certified for safety. You’ll also receive a full year to try it out with free returns if needed.
The Aslan gel foam mattress is made with Phase Change material and gel memory foam to deliver the most comfortable night sleep you’ve ever had. This mattress starts with a thick layer of active support foam to keep the spine in proper alignment, no matter your sleeping position. Next comes a transition layer of Next Generation memory foam which adjusts to all body shapes. The top is a layer of beaded gel and cooling memory foam under a soft fabric cover. Best of all, this mattress is affordably priced under $1,000 for the Queen size.
- Pros: Cooling technology, support and pressure relief, generous trial period, free fast shipping
- Cons: Only one firmness/thickness option, sleep trial requires 50-night break-in period
Best for Couples: As if sleeping while pregnant wasn’t difficult enough, you may find yourself struggling with the challenges of sleeping with a partner as well. Every move your partner makes wakes you from sleep, not to mention the added body heat. If you’re looking for the best pregnancy mattress designed for couples, we recommend a Helix Luxe. Helix mattresses come with a 100-night sleep trial and 15-year warranty.
The Helix Luxe mattress is available in a variety of firmness levels with specific models for different sleeping styles. We like the Helix Midnight Luxe because it is medium-firm and designed for side sleepers. The mattress is built on a base layer of individually wrapped coils which respond to motion separately, cradling the body to provide advanced lumbar support. On top, you’ll find layers of high-grade polyfoam, gel visco foam, and memory plus foam that conform to the contours of your body, relieving pressure where needed.
- Pros: Luxury hybrid design, medium firmness level, comfort and pressure relief, 100-night sleep trial
- Cons: Fairly expensive compared to some brands, may be too soft for heavy sleepers
Best for Cooling: Pregnancy messes with your hormones and it can also affect your temperature regulation. One minute you’re freezing and the next you’re sweating as if it were over 100 degrees out. Many women find it hard to sleep when they feel too warm. If that sounds like you, the Bear Pro might be what you need.
The Bear Pro mattress is one of the newest additions to the Bear lineup and it features copper-infused foam for a cool, clean night of sleep. This mattress features four layers of foam with a breathable Celliant cover that helps speed muscle recovery. The top layer is made of copper-infused foam followed by a layer of gel memory foam to remove unwanted body heat. There’s a transition layer of responsive pressure-relieving foam underneath with a base of high-density support foam. All bear mattresses come with free shipping and returns, a 100-night risk-free trial, and a 10-year warranty.
- 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
Best Innerspring: You may think you know what innerspring mattresses are, but you’re probably used to the traditional continuous coil model. These mattresses are durable and offer decent support, but they don’t do much for motion isolation. Modern innerspring mattresses often utilize pocketed coils which respond individually to pressure, prevention motion transfer for a better night’s sleep. If you’re looking to try an innerspring mattress, we recommend the Saatva Classic.
The Saatva Classic is a luxury hybrid innerspring mattress that comes in three different firmness levels: Plush Soft (3), Luxury Firm (5-7), and Firm (8). This mattress features a quilted Euro pillow top and an organic cotton cover with perimeter edge support and individually wrapped coils. We recommend the Luxury Firm model for pregnancy, though heavier sleepers may appreciate a little extra firmness. All Saatva mattresses ship free and come with included 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 Hybrid: When you can’t decide what type of mattress to go with, a hybrid might be the right choice. Hybrid mattresses combine two or more materials to deliver a custom level of comfort that is perfect for your preferences. We love the Layla hybrid mattress because it combines premium memory foam with pocketed coils to deliver the support you need and the comfort you crave.
The Layla Hybrid mattress is a unique option because it comes with two different firmness levels – simply flip the mattress to switch between them. At the core you have a 6-inch layer of pocketed coils with a double coil perimeter for superior edge support. On either side you’ll find a layer of Max Airflow support foam with deep channels to facilitate maximum cooling, each topped with copper-gel memory foam to deliver either a plush or firm feel. The mattress is wrapped in a super-soft breathable fabric cover that zips off for easy cleaning.
- 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 some sleepers
Best Organic: As a mother, you want the very best for your baby and making smart decisions starts while you’re pregnant. If you’re looking for a high-quality mattress made with organic materials, we recommend PlushBeds. The Botanical Bliss model is made from 100% natural organic latex with a luxury design and it’s everything you could ever hope for in a mattress.
The PlushBeds Botanical Bliss mattress comes in three different heights and two levels of firmness: medium and medium-firm. This mattress features an organic cotton cover that delivers breathable comfort with an interior of temperature-regulating organic New Zealand wool and pressure-relieving organic Dunlop latex. This mattress breathes naturally to keep you cool and it provides exceptional soothing support to keep you comfortable. You’ll also be glad to know the materials are certified organic, grown sustainably without any harmful pesticides or other chemicals.
PlushBeds offers a 100-night sleep trial on their mattresses with free shipping and returns. You’ll also receive a generous 25-year warranty to protect your investment.
- Pros: Made from natural/organic materials, absorbs pressure, provides support, three firmness levels
- Cons: Significantly more expensive than other models
Best Natural Latex: Though memory foam is known for its pressure-relieving benefits, some people find that it sinks too much. When you’re pregnant, the last thing you want is to feel swallowed by your bed, unable to move or change positions. If you’re looking for something that has a little more bounce to it, natural latex may be the way to go. In that case, we recommend the Zenhaven mattress by Saatva.
The Zenhaven mattress delivers 100% pure comfort with natural and organic materials. This mattress offers targeted support from a 5-zone Talalay latex comfort layer that gives you firmer support where you need it most to keep your spine in proper alignment. The base is made from Talalay latex as well to deliver resilient support and you’ll enjoy the added breathability and comfort of an organic wool layer and a cover of organic cotton materials with a stylish gold damask trim.
This mattress is naturally hypoallergenic and antimicrobial as well, so there’s nothing to harm you or your baby. Plus, it comes with free white glove delivery and a 120-night home trial.
Nothing is worse than spending the whole night tossing and turning. When you’re pregnant, your body changes rapidly and it can be difficult to keep up. All you want is to collapse in bed at the end of the day and drift off into restful sleep.
If you’re having trouble sleeping, your mattress might be part of the problem. Upgrading your mattress to something more supportive may be the solution.
We’ve done our best to address the issues that commonly interfere with sleep during pregnancy to give you some ideas for how to resolve the problem. Check out the recommendations we’ve made above for the best mattress for pregnancy and consider trying one yourself!
Frequently Asked Questions
- Is it safe to sleep on a new mattress when pregnant? – Memory foam mattresses are great, but they sometimes come with the risk of off-gassing. This is simply the process of releasing gas as the mattress expands and regains its shape after being taken out of the box. There is little risk associated with sleeping on a memory foam mattress, even while pregnant, but it isn’t a bad idea to choose a mattress that doesn’t contain VOCs. Check to be sure your mattress is made with CertiPUR-US® Certified materials and you’ll be perfectly fine.
- Is it better to sleep on a firm or soft mattress for pregnancy? – Regardless your physical condition, a medium/firm mattress is generally the best option. If you sleep on a mattress that’s too firm, it might not relieve any of the pressure your body creates. When sleeping on your side, this leads to pressure points on the hips and shoulders which can leave you very sore and stiff. A mattress that is too soft won’t support your body and may allow your spine to fall out of alignment during sleep which causes problems of its own. A medium/firm mattress offers plenty of support but still relieves pressure and it isn’t so soft that you’ll have trouble repositioning during the night.
- What sleeping position is best for pregnancy? – Experts typically recommend SOS or “sleep on side” during pregnancy. Better yet, sleep on your left side. Sleeping on your side prevents you from putting excess pressure on your back and belly. If you sleep on your left side, you’ll maximize blood flow (and the flow of nutrients) to the placenta and to your baby. It’s best to sleep with your legs and knees slightly bent, a pillow between your knees to help keep your spine in proper alignment.
- What is a pregnancy pillow? – Also known as a maternity pillow, a pregnancy pillow is specially designed to support the changing curves and contours of your body during pregnancy. These pillows support various sleeping positions, helping you find a position that is comfortable enough for sleep. Many pregnancy pillows have a U-like shape you wedge yourself between, cradling your body between the sides of the pillow.
- Is it okay to sleep on a memory foam mattress during pregnancy? – Yes! In fact, memory foam mattresses are an excellent option during pregnancy. As your body grows and changes, you may find yourself needing to alter your sleeping position from one week to the next. Memory foam adapts to your body, relieving pressure where needed without compromising on support. Just be sure to choose a memory foam mattress that isn’t too firm or too soft.