need help with cause of back pain with new baed

Pheonix: I am the 6’-8" 250# guy who bought serta at sears and it became concave after a few months giving me lower back pain, so I got a new bed from magic sleeper in Pottstown PA. The new bed has a split mattress so I have my own latex mattress in a zippered top and my wife has her own half. We ordered the king bed with 3" of latex on both our sides. After a few nights this too gave me lower back pain when I woke in the morning. THe latex is a 2/5 on firmness.

Now I have recently been at a Marriot hotel and had no back pain from their bed and great sleep, and slept out camping on an Areo air bed and had 3 great nights on it too. Also I have slept on our sofa now for 3 of the past 5 weeks and have no
back pain from the sofa either.
So John at magic sleeper thought that the latex maybe too soft or me. So he sent me a firm foam ( not latex) 3" for my half the bed. Its a 4/5 on firmness. I thought a much firmer foam would better support me. But it almost feels too hard. I am tossing and turning and having discomfort. I have less pain in my lower back but still having pain.
What in the worold should I do? Should I get a 3/5 firmness foam? I cannot guess why I sleep ok on the sofa and air bed and get back pain from my real bed.

Hi burnell,

I can imagine how frustrating it is when your couch provides a better sleep than your new bed … but this is not as uncommon as you may think.

The thickness of a layer and of the mattress can play just as big a role as the firmness level and with a sofa … there is just a layer of a few inches of foam (varying from about mid 20’s up to a more normal mid 30’s or higher ILD and usually at least 1.8 lb but often even higher density HR polyfoam) over a very firm spring base. It’s likely that the firmness of the base is the reason you (and others) do well on the sofa if the support of their mattress is too soft. A sofa is designed to support weight over a much more concentrated area than a mattress.

The Marriott hotels use several different mattresses so this would be difficult to use as a model without knowing the specs of the one(s) that worked for you but in general they would also have a firm support core with softer layers on top including various mattress pads and featherbeds. Jamison for example uses Marriott foam in their mattresses (mostly a 7" firm high quality polyfoam with various types of layering on top).

Even the Aerobed would likely be a very firm support system with little give and while it may not be very comfortable … it would likely be firm and have little give (depending of course how much you blew it up).

Based on all of this … and on the fact that back pain is more often than not a symptom of the firmness of the support layers than the comfort layers … I would think that a firmer support core could be the issue here. The top 3" is primarily for pressure relief and secondarily affects support and alignment (depending on the combination of thickness and ILD). The mattress support core is primarily for support and alignment and secondarily affects pressure relief (again depending on the thickness and ILD of the comfort layers). Adding firmer foam to the top seems to have created a double problem by creating pressure problems while not really solving the support issues.

Do you know the details of what is in the support layers? I am thinking this may need to be firmer.

It would also help to know the type of foundation that was under the mattress.


Hi burnell,

I would like you to suggest Drsnooze, online mattress store in Ocala. Last Friday i had a great deal to get in mattresses. They also shown me the beds which are really helpful in back pain. I hope you will find your choice of bed or mattresses to recover from back pain.


Hi alexjones,

I would NOT recommend this outlet as a good online source for mattresses. There is more about this in my messages to you in the Ocala thread here.

There is also no such thing as a mattress that “helps with back pain” for the general population. There are only mattresses that can help an individual be in better alignment while they are sleeping which may help with back issues for that particular person. A mattress that helps “alleviate” back pain for one person may aggravate back pain for another.


Hi Phoenix,

Actually I had only visited the brand page DrSnooze thats why i suggested it. Back Performance FE, MX, PS are lsited there. You are also true because they did not listed the products inside the categories.