With so many of us working from home or seeing a change in our working environment, it should be of no surprise that our home working routines are doing little for our backs, hips, and necks. According to BUPA, some 63% of British adults are now experiencing long-term aches and pains - that’s over 11 million Brits who might groan a little when getting out of bed or need to give their bones a crack on a morning.
Today, we want to focus on the often-neglected topic of hip pain. Can a bad mattress cause body aches and hip pain? It certainly could be the cause. A mattress isn’t just your sleeping surface, it’s your comfort space - it may seem like an extravagant solution for an achy hip, but a proper decision when buying a mattress can improve your health, sleep quality, and lifestyle tenfold.
If you’re not sure where to begin, don’t worry - we’ve put together a handy guide for finding the perfect mattress for hip pain, and given some sleep tips to ease the pressure on your bones where they might need it most.
How Can An Old Mattress Cause Hip Pain?
The answer is all in alignment. When an area of your back or hips is not being properly supported, the muscles have to work harder to try and keep everything in the right place. As a result, you may wake up with them tired, cramped up or even trapped in positions they shouldn’t have been in!
This can stem from improper mattress support - but it can go further. If your mattress doesn’t provide you comfort, you’ll find yourself tossing and turning more often, once again ensuring your muscles have to work harder to provide you with a position your body is comfortable with.
Your mattress is like the ultimate safe space; but if it’s not providing you with comfort or support, it’ll quickly become a curse. An old mattress can develop dips, dives and uneven springs, so, should you be sleeping with a poor alignment, old mattresses will only serve to worsen the issue as time goes on.
A softer mattress can allow pressure points to dip, leading to extra pressure on the spine and hip joints. While this is fine for those who don’t suffer with pre-existing problems, if you do have a dodgy hip then a firmer mattress will allow for the extra, all over support. Jeffrey N. Katz, M.D., Professor of Medicine and Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School, conducted a study that found that those using firmer mattresses reported significantly less lower back and hip pain when attempting to rest.
Avoid the Innerspring
Innerspring mattresses don’t offer enough strength and support for hip pain, so it’s best to stay clear of this type of mattress. The soft, movement-absorbing material of an innerspring mattress dips the hips and, in turn, creates pressure points. Alongside this, it allows the rest of the body to sag slightly which can lead to a contortion of the spine while sleeping. This can result in secondary problems, so it’s especially important to choose a mattress that offers extra support to areas which traditionally form pressure points e.g. backs and hips.
We’re sure most of us love the idea of sinking deep into a soft, fluffy pile of bedding, enveloping ourselves into a practical marshmallow of comfort. But this isn’t always ideal - the reality is that a softer bed doesn’t guarantee better sleep.
A softer mattress can allow pressure points to dip, leading to extra pressure on the spine and hip joints. While this is fine for those who don’t suffer from pre-existing problems, or those of us blessed with supple joints, over time it can wear down on the body. A firmer mattress is always the more supportive, orthopaedic option.
Can a bad mattress cause body aches? Can an old mattress cause hip pain? Evidence suggests so - Jeffrey N. Katz, M.D., Professor of Medicine and Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School, conducted a study - and found that those using firmer Mattresses reported significantly less lower back and hip pain when attempting to rest.
Avoid the Innerspring
Innerspring mattresses - especially those that are softer or lack a firm foam layer - don’t offer enough strength and support for hip pain; If you’re aiming for decent support, a spring mattress should always be as firm as possible. When it isn’t capable of providing an ergonomic, firm surface, the movement-absorbing material dips the hips and, in turn, creates pressure points.
A soft spring mattress allows the rest of the body to sag slightly, which can lead to a contortion of the spine while sleeping. This can result in secondary problems, so it’s especially important to choose a mattress that offers extra support to areas that traditionally form pressure points - such as the back and the hips.
Mark the Memory Foam
Memory Foam Mattresses are still a top-class solution for a supportive night’s sleep - and there’s a reason why memory foam mattresses are perfect for those who are suffering from joint pain. This miracle material was designed by the most forward-thinking minds of the modern world – NASA, who developed it to withstand G forces.
It was immediately adopted for pilots who are required to sit for extended periods, and to assist medical patients who require extra support. It’s that same support that’s perfect for relieving those annoying pressure points which often plague your sleep.
If you’re a side sleeper, then you may be particularly prone to problems with pelvic rotation and hip complications. This is due to the misalignment of your spine while you sleep. By providing extra support to your spine and hips, memory foam can quickly prove a heroic fix for those niggling little clicks and cracks.
The elasticity of the material allows it to conform to the body while also evenly distributing the weight. On top of this, it doesn’t trap the body heat as the density changes, meaning you don’t end up feeling like you’re stuck in a sauna every night.
Is your memory foam mattress causing hip pain? Then read on - there may still be ways to improve it.
Look Out for Latex
Memory foam mattress causing hip pain? Latex could be the answer.
Latex foam mattresses are perfect for targeting very specific areas, without compromising on providing strength and comfort to the rest of your body. Latex foam is more resistant, firm and springy, and better for air circulation - meaning a cool, comfortable sleeping surface while providing much-needed support to your achy joints.
If you tend to toss and turn at night, a latex mattress makes it much easier to shuffle around in comparison to its memory foam counterpart.
Choosing a Mattress Topper for Hip Pain
While a firm mattress is an extremely effective way to help your hip pain, if you’re looking to add an extra layer of comfort or support then a mattress topper can be a great middle-ground - and can provide a perfect foundation.
It can also effortlessly lengthen the life cycle of your mattress. So, if you know your mattress is on the way out or isn’t quite meeting your comfort needs, or feel your mattress is causing hip pain, a mattress topper is an inexpensive compromise. If you can’t quite afford a full mattress replacement, pop a topper across it and you might just find all of the extra support you need.
Top Tips for Sleeping with Hip Pain
If you’re wondering if a bad mattress causes body aches, you’ve probably gotten your answer. But is that the only potential problem area? Absolutely not!
Even if you have a supportive mattress, hip pain can make sleep a difficult thing to achieve. If you’re already experiencing pain in your hips and can’t quite get a good night’s kip, rest easy - we’ve compiled some top tips to provide the perfect night’s sleep, even if you feel like your memory foam mattress is causing hip pain rather than improving it.
Whether you're sleeping on a king-size bed or a sofa bed, you should always ensure that you have the right support and are giving your body the best possible chance of getting that perfect alignment and comfort.
Getting Into Position
Most agree that sleeping on your back is the best way to get a decent night’s sleep - but if you’re already suffering issues with alignment or hip pain, it’s not going to be so easy to just swap over into a whole new way of sleeping.
If you’re already a side sleeper, then we’ll make sure you’re on the right track. Position yourself on your side, draw your knees to your chest (or as close as you can get), and place a pillow between your knees.
This position, plus the addition of the pillow, will help align your hips, pelvis, and spine allowing for less stress on your already afflicted areas. It may feel odd at first, but as you acclimate you’ll soon see the world of difference.
Bring in the Right Bed
Of course, the mattress is important - but what about the bed itself? With their platform tops and sturdy build, a divan bed is a particularly good solution for those suffering from a lack of support.
Your bed’s frame plays an important job in providing a stable, durable, and supportive surface for your mattress - it pushes back against your mattress as equally as the mattress pushes against it. As a result, metal frames that need more regular adjustment can provide less support and comfort over time.
If you are suffering back or hip pain, it may be worth giving your bed frame a check over, tighten the screws and adjust the slats to provide a more even foundation for your mattress.
Purchase the Right Pillow
The thing with localised inner pains is that they have a domino effect. Improper neck support can offset your spine alignment, which will then affect your hips. The result is that while you may not think of it as an important purchase to banish your bone-aches, the correct pillow is essential to get that perfect night’s sleep.
All too often, we allow a pillow to flatten out over time, and neglect taking their lack of support into consideration. As with mattresses, a memory foam pillow is often the better solution for providing optimal neck support, without tilting your head at an uncomfortable angle.
Our Bamboo Memory Foam Pillows by Panda are a superb solution. These high-tech memory foam pillows use sustainable bamboo fibres, provide superior temperature regulation and the best possible support in one comfortable package. They’re even eco-friendly!
Help Your Hip Pain with Our Mattresses
Can an old mattress cause hip pain? There’s little doubt that a key way to improve those aches, pains and twinges is to bite the bullet and invest in a new mattress that provides you with the support your body truly needs.
We proudly stock one of the fastest-growing selections of orthopaedic mattresses in the UK, and, with our useful firmness slider tool, can demonstrate how a mattress will truly feel according to your weight - making it easier than ever to ensure your sleep is the best it can be.
If you still aren’t sure what mattress is best for you, we’re here to help. Check out our mattress guide today!