Lower back pain. help figuring it out

Hi everyone, I am writing here to seek for an advice. Sorry by now for my english (I am italian) and the mistakes I could make and for the long post.
Also, in italy I cant come around most of the brands you have in the USA, aside tempur and latex bed are extremely rare here.

Back in July 2023 I started having pain in my left hip, pain that I had until mid january when I went to see an orthopedic that diagnosed me with a trochanter bursitis and healed me with a couple of cortisone injection. I also stopped doing pole sport and started to make pilates to help my leg. We also found out that I have a slightly dystrophic disk between my last lumbar vertebrae and the first sacral one which I figured since I suffer from hyperlordosis.
Eventually I got better but from time to time i still experienced this pain in my hip, so I decided to change our 13 years old very basic orthopedic mattress that I figured has sagged on my hip area and made me touch the slats (?).

So, a month and a half ago we bought a 20cm mattress that had 2cm of memory (way too thin) and the rest of water foam (aka polyhuretane).
I have a 10 yo ikea brimness bed with slats (the old version of lonset with no differentiated zones).
The mattress was ok for my lower back. I felt that the firmness was quite right (maybe excessive) but it kept my vertebras stretched out.
On the other hand, since I am a side sleeper (that eventually rolls on her back during the night) the mattress was too firm on my shoulder, resulting in cervical inflammation.
After two week of use of this mattress I had my left shoulder blade inflamed and also tension in my neck.
I also tried with a 6cm memory foam topper but, although my shoulder improved, my lower back started to hake because my bottom sank too much.

We then tried for other two weeks a hybrid mattress, with 800 coils and 6 cm of memory foam (50kg/m2 density) with some other thinner foam layer before the coils.
This one was too soft for me, resulting in lower back pain (which I didn’t have before - I only had sciatica and trochanter bursitis in my left leg) and I had to go sleep on our old beddinge couch (ikea) to heal my back again.

Now we have switched to an all natural latex ikea mattress. Mausund.
I really like this one. My cervical pain has gone for good. But my lower back isn’t ok quite yet.
In the morning, although I have no pain at all during the night, I get up and feel my lumbar area stiff.
I don’t have pressure points. I tried a memory topper for 5 minutes and the pain got worse! While after stretching on the floor and using two tennis ball to decompress my lumbar area I felt better.
So my guess is that the mattress is ok for me, but I need to make it a little bit firmer in my lower back area.

I was thinking of changing the slats to ikea lumber flat slats (lindbaden) (which are also the one that are used in the ikea show room) or eventually take the ones that can be regulated on the lower back area (i am a little bit scared that the flat ones can be too hard on my shoulder again and inflame the shoulder blades when I sleep on my side).
But before doing this (since it has been almost two months of trials) I wanted to ask you what do you think of my situation and if I am doing the right guess by making the bed foundation firmer in order to get rid of this pain.
I would like to keep this mattress because it feels the best one I tried so far. It is a medium firm, not too firm but also not soft. I also have been feeling like the princess on the pea and I really don’t like it :frowning:


Hi Pochi87 and welcome to the forums! It sounds like making the foundation firmer and more support will be a good solution. If you want to test it before making the change, you can put the mattress directly on the floor to see if things get better or worse. If you put the mattress on the floor and it’s better, then I’d say changing the foundation or slats is likely a good choice.

Thank you very much for your reply.
I can’t try the mattress on the floor for a matter of space.
But we changed the slats today (ikea is 30 minutes ride from here and it has a 30days return policy) with the flat pine ones and I will let you know how it goes.
I can already feel the bes is firmer.
If i try to pass a hand under my back while I am laying on the mattress it can pass but not easily, so I guess this should be ideal to keep my spine aligned but not too bend.
If I lay on my side the spine is aligned (i had my dad check with a ruler).
Finger crossed this change is going to make the deal!
In the meantime, thank you for your reassuring reply.

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OK great! Thanks for the update, let us know how it goes!

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So the bed is indeed firmer.
Infact now i have my left harm (and tonight I could feel this also in my leg) has a tingle to it (as if blood is not corculationg as it should). I felt it during the night and is still persisting now thay I have been up for an hour now.
I will try another night to see if improves or get worse, but as I learned from my body, it will probably get worse.
On the other hand it seems that my lumbar area is improuving!

It seems I can’t have both my lower back and my shoulder area fine at the same time amymore :confused:

If it get worse I will try with a thin topper (maybe wool?) to try to make the bed slightly softer on my shoulder


I’m a side sleeper. I use a knee pillow to maintain correct alignment.
Do you use a knee pillow when side sleeping?

Healthline Suggestions

Hi PapaMike,
I am using a pillow between my leg since I all this mattress maddness started, but it didn’t help with my shoulder pain problem. Only when I have hip/ lower back pain issue it does something (for my lower part).

As I mentioned in my latest post, with the flat pine slats the mattress now is on the firmer side, which is helping with my lower back, but it is hurting my shoulder area (and harm).
Isn’t there a very flat pillow or a topper that I can use only in my upper part? I think that would help reduce the pressure on my shoulder when I side sleep, but will leave my lowerback on the firm mattress!


Since you changed your mattress firmness, a pillow change is probably needed.

Here’s a thread you may find helpful.


Thank you! I was thinking about this possibility

Hi everyone, i though to update my own post so that others can learn how i fixed the situation.
So my ikea mausund (100% natural latex) was still not ok for my lower back, even with flat slats.
So a month ago I tried to put a firmer topper on it. The topper is a polyfoam topper with natural oils in the blend (the company calls it bio green) and it is supposed to be orthopedic and make firmer a soft mattress. Its firmness rating is 8 on a scale from 1 to 10.
And this made the trick. Slowly my shoulder stopped hurting and my lower back pain reduced till I can barely feel it now.

I also am going weekly to physiotherapy and still doing pilates + some exercises the physiotherapist gave me.
It could aslo be that my back pain is a result of me dropping out of pole dance trainings (which was very strong on my abdominals and back muscles) for the hip pain I was experiencing since last july, and my back is having an hard time adjusting to that, since pilates is not so hard core.
Anyway the latex mattress was not that supportive in my lumbar area, but with a firmer topper i can now feel the right support and contouring around my body.

I could have returned the mausund and taken a pocket spring instead, but I was too afraid to start with the adjustment period and experience the pain and all the madness again.

I also wanted to thanks this forum for not being biased with judgements and doesn’t try to make costumers buy into the idea that only high end mattress are good and all the rest is trash.

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