We have a DreamFoam Ultimate Dreams latex mattress with a 24 ILD/level 7 comfort. I wake up with shoulder pain each morning. The bed is simply too firm for me, but OK for my husband. I am 5’ 6" 145 lbs and he is 5’11" 195 lbs. If I want more softness w/o compromising his support, which DreamFoam Talalay latex topper would you recommend from the following:
2" 19 ILD
2" 24 ILD
3" 19 ILD
3" 24 ILD
I have tried all kinds of pillows to alleviate the shoulder problem, but feel like I just need more softness for my shoulder. We are both back/side sleepers. Thanks!
With toppers … I am more comfortable with a “less is better” approach in terms of thickness because there is less risk of exchanging a pressure issue with an alignment issue. Post #8 here has some topper guidelines that should be helpful.
I understand your less is better approach, so I’ll go with the 2" topper. I’m still curious of your opinion on the 19 vs 24 ILD topper…please refer to my original post on our mattress.
Would a few more inches of the 24 ILD feel like “more of the same” w/o much pressure relief?
Or do I go to the next level of softness (19 ILD) to get pressure relief??
I remember reading that 5" of a certain ILD will feel softer than only 3" of the same ILD. That would make me wonder about how and additional 2" of 24 ILD (there’s already 3" in the mattress) would compare with 2" of 19 ILD for alignment and pressue relief and alignment. I’ve had bad luck w/ shoulder pain on the 24 ILD mattress, so I’m concerned a 24 ILD topper would be a bad idea.
Both the cover and mattress have separate bamboo covers, for a little extra softness.
I like to sink into my mattress (I love pillowtop mattresses) but don’t want the feeling that my husband and I are rolling into each other in the middle. I DO NOT want to throw off his alignment either. Thanks for your time!!
[quote]Would a few more inches of the 24 ILD feel like “more of the same” w/o much pressure relief?
Or do I go to the next level of softness (19 ILD) to get pressure relief??[/quote]
There’s no way for me to know what it would feel like for any specific person and it also depends on what is already under the topper (all the layers of a sleeping system affect every other layer) but the thickness of the comfort layers will have just as much of an effect on how it feels and performs as the softness of the layer. Thicker layers “act” softer than thinner layers and have more “room” to compress and form a deeper pressure relieving cradle before they become firmer with a greater percentage of compression which means they “feel” softer. Softer materials also act softer than firmer materials because they also have less resistance to pressure and will “allow” you to sink in more deeply and form a deeper pressure relieving cradle. It’s the depth of your pressure relieving cradle and how well it contours to your body shape in all your sleeping positions that relieves pressure. The thickness and softness of the upper layers work together in other words and you really can’t differentiate the effect of one from the other or from the effect of the layers below the topper…
What creates pressure relief is the depth of the pressure relieving “cradle” in the mattress and how well it conforms to your body shape and re-distributes pressure. In some cases thicker materials work better (when the softer materials aren’t thick enough to “allow” your pressure points to sink in enough before they “reach” the firmer materials below them) and in some cases the top few inches of the sleeping system may be thick enough already but the material itself is too firm to “allow” a certain body type or part of the body to sink in enough … particularly in the upper layers of your mattress.
Lighter body weights generally need softer materials while heavier body types will sink in more deeply and generally need firmer comfort layers for the same amount of pressure relief.
In your case you are on the lighter side with an hourglass figure and a back/side sleeper and your mattress already has about 4 1/2" of a softer material in the top layers so my thinking is the less additional thickness the better and since the 24 ILD appears to be a little on the firm side for you in the lighter shoulder area that a little softer ILD may have better odds of success in “allowing” your shoulders to sink in but only “just enough” to reduce the risk of alignment issues when you are on your back (and for your partner). Both ILD’s would soften the mattress just in different ways and to different degrees.
There is no formula to predict this because the variations in each person’s body types, sleeping positions, and individual sensitivities and physiology are so variable that only your own experience can really know with any certainty so when you are making topper choices. There is only “odds” of success based on the limited or “theoretical” information that is available (compared to actual experience).
Well, the 2 " 19 ILD topper on the 24 ILD Dreamfoam Ultimate Dreams mattress has helped with my shoulder pain. However, my butt sinks into the mattress more than the rest of my body and now I wake up with back pain.
Should I try a 24 ILD latex blend topper (same ILD of our mattress) which contributed to my shoulder pain? Would an additional 2" of the same ILD (24) do much for my shoulder? I am concerned that “more of the same” will not offer enough softness. Would this be a case where 3" should be considered?
Should I try a memory foam or egg crate topper? Maybe latex is not the way to go after all. I know this is very subjective and everyone is different but would appreciate your input on whether I can expect increased softness while still maintaining alignment w/ the firmer topper when it is the same ILD as the mattress.
[quote]Well, the 2 " 19 ILD topper on the 24 ILD Dreamfoam Ultimate Dreams mattress has helped with my shoulder pain. However, my butt sinks into the mattress more than the rest of my body and now I wake up with back pain.
Should I try a 24 ILD latex blend topper (same ILD of our mattress) which contributed to my shoulder pain? Would an additional 2" of the same ILD (24) do much for my shoulder? I am concerned that “more of the same” will not offer enough softness. Would this be a case where 3" should be considered?[/quote]
The thickness of a layer and the ILD of a layer both affect softness and how far each part of your body sinks in. In the same way that 14 ILD is softer than 19 ILD which in turn is softer than 24 ILD (and softer means you will sink in more) … a 5" layer of 24 ILD would be softer than a 4" layer of 24 ILD which in turn will be softer than a 3" layer of 24 ILD. Thickness and softness are just two of the factors that can affect how deeply you sink into a layer.
Unfortunately there is no way for me to know with any certainty what will work best for you and it really is a matter of “odds” and trial and error. There is no formula that can take into account all the variations in body type and sleeping positions or how each person will interact with any specific combination.
In cases like yours where no topper causes pressure issues and a 2" topper causes alignment issues then the next step I would lean towards would be to try a 1" topper which is in between and which will put your pelvis closer to the support layer and “stop” it from sinking in more quickly and may still give you enough extra softness for the extra pressure relief that your shoulders need. I would also make sure you have eliminated any of the other possibilities in post #2 here that may be affecting how much your shoulders are sinking in. I would also make sure that you have tried any combination for at least several days to make sure that what you are experiencing isn’t just an anomaly.
A 2" 24 ILD topper will also provide extra softness for the shoulders to sink in compared to no topper and will hold up the pelvis a little more than a 19 ILD topper so it would also be another possibility worth trying.
Any increase in thickness or decrease in ILD will both create more softness. Increased thickness increases the odds of your pelvis sinking down too far relative to the shoulders before it is stopped so I would tend to stick with thinner layers. It may be well worth trying both memory foam or egg crate if you are able to order them from a source that has a good refund policy (such as a big box store) so you can experiment without risk. This isn’t so much because the material would be better (although it may work better for you) but because it allows you to experiment without building up a storehouse of toppers that haven’t worked.
It can be a challenge to find the topper that allows your shoulders to sink in enough without allowing your pelvis to sink in too far.
In some cases a shredded latex topper can help in these situations as well because the latex can “flow around” the more pointy shoulders and allow them to sink in more but still have good resilience and resistance under the greater surface area of the pelvis so it can provide some extra softness with less effect on alignment.
When you need to experiment then refund policies can be the most important part of the “value” of your purchase.