Hello! I’d like to start a new thread but don’t know how. So I will piggyback off this detailed post about the “species” of firmness.
Question 1: does pressure relief sacrifice support? I am a 135lb side-sleeper on a Zenhaven currently with two 1.5" soft talalay (14ild) toppers layered on top. After starting completely over in the showroom, I’ve finally realized it’s not that I like a soft bed—I like a bed with low pressure points, IE, high point elasticity. (At least in theory. Have never owned one. The Zenhaven was my first mattress purchase after getting whatever broken-in hand me down was available for free.) By putting the two toppers on the Zenhaven I cut down on the painful pressure I felt under my shoulder and hard feeling under my hip, and the airspace between my waist and the bed. They made the mattress bearable. But in the showroom, the bed I wound up liking best was pretty firm (according to the showman), but with low pressure. (It was a Wellsville 11" Latex Hybrid, for the record.) I also thoroughly enjoyed sleeping on a Zinus Green Tea on a trip lately (although I wouldn’t buy one based on the scary fiberglass issue). The Zinus made me realize I don’t hate memory foam if it’s more responsive! Who knew. I tried the Brooklyn Bedding lineup and found the medium firmness comfortable but maybe even too soft. I thought maybe it wouldn’t be supportive enough over time. How do you know?
Question 2: can latex offer pressure relief comparable to memory foam? I really wanted to love latex from everything I’ve read. However, the Zenhaven is not comfortable to me. The local latex manufacturer beds don’t feel comfortable to me. The beds with more latex in the showroom don’t feel comfortable to me. While I like the spring, they all seem to compress and push back too much against my shoulder and hip. It seems that memory foam and even the TitanFlex stuff offers better pressure relief, and the faster response stuff feels pretty comfortable to me.
Question 3: should I stick with a bed that feels uncomfortable to me if I sleep fine and it seems supportive? On the Zenhaven with two toppers, I get into bed thinking, gosh this bed is not as comfortable as anything in the showroom. I don’t feel like my alignment is good (and have had a picture taken that shows it isn’t.) But, after those initial grumbles every night, I sleep fine, don’t toss and turn, and don’t think the bed pains me (hard to say as I have chronic pain. Sometimes when I lie down I get instantaneous pain across my hip/backside but that could just be fibromyalgia.) I worry if I get a bed that feels nice and low-pressure in the showroom, I will wind up having lower back trouble. When I wake up I have NO desire to snuggle into bed for any extra time (not. comfy.) but I’m not stiff or hurting from sleeping. Notably, my pain in the rump is usually better by morning.
Question 4: should I stick with a bed I’m making work with two toppers? That makes my spendy mattress seem like a bit of an expensive platform and like maybe it’s not a good fit. I also wonder if it’s just a bad setup…that’s almost 4.5" of 14ish ILD on top of N3+N4. Or maybe that’s acceptable fine-tuning? I do have a budget concern here…in that if the mattress IS going to just be a platform, could it be a cheaper one?
My main fear is that a lot of people really seem to struggle with support in the long run. It seems like they buy mattresses that feel good to them, but then have low back pain later. I was intrigued by latex layer beds, but I’m not sure I’m sold on latex comfort-wise. I never would have bought the Zenhaven mattress had I tried it first. It doesn’t contour as much as I like, I didn’t sink in enough to get side support, the pressure under the shoulder and hip is intense without any toppers. The ones I tried in our local latex mattress manufacturer showroom felt similar to me, although I don’t know if they are representative of the industry as a whole. (The Pure Talalay Bliss beds, for instance, felt really different to me.)
I like the idea of buying something I can try out first, but we are limited in our shops here. Our local store does carry Brooklyn Bedding, which I’m interested in, and Englander, which I imagine is on par with big-S brands in terms of “be skeptical”. My second choice (for budget and trial period) would be a TMU-approved retailer that acts like a bed-in-a-box, like Nest Bedding. Third choice (depending on answers about pressure relief) would be a latex layered bed, although as a disabled person I am very daunted by layer swaps and the short trial periods of the more local manufacturers.
Buying a bed, topper-ing a bed, going on vacation, and starting over has made me rethink my PPP, and also made me understand the difference between pressure relief and firmness a whole lot better. But how do I choose well not just for what I like the feel of, but for what will treat my body well in the long run? The 20-something sales guy said most modern mattresses are pretty dang supportive, so I should just go off what’s comfy (and pick the firmest one if a few seem comfy). But I see too many people with low back pain from poor support on new beds here…right?
Then again…I’m 135 pounds. Guessing on the bell curve of people these mattresses are designed for, I’ll probably get enough support since I’d be on the lighter side. Then again, that might be a broad assumption!
I think about Dansko shoes, which are so hard and uncomfortable at first…but your feet thank you later. Then you try something “squishy” that feels great and your feet hate you at the end of the day…similar theory?
Thanks in advance!