Updated November 2021
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Buying guide for Best mattresses for seniors

As we all have different bodies, lifestyles, sleeping habits, and health needs, mattresses are not one size fits all. In fact, while one mattress may help a certain individual get a quality night’s rest, the same option might cause another to toss and turn, waking up sore and exhausted.

Seniors, in particular, need the proper mattress to fit their needs, whether they require more support for the joints and muscles or a bed that’s easier to get in and out of. Other factors may include durability, value, airflow, and any other personal health issues that need to be addressed.

Fortunately, mattresses are evolving rapidly, with a variety of characteristics and features tailored to the most specific of sleeping requirements. Our buying guide will help seniors find the right mattress in order to sleep comfortably and soundly through the night. When you’re ready to shop, take a look at our top picks for the best mattresses for seniors on the market.

Invest in a higher-priced mattress if it fits your needs best. Even a mattress that costs $1,000 upfront will end up essentially costing $0.50 a day if it lasts six years.

Key considerations

Mattress type

There are three main types of mattresses to choose from: innerspring, foam, or hybrid mattresses.

  • Innerspring: These mattresses are the most traditional, although they’ve changed over time to offer more versatility. Innerspring mattresses use springs and coils to provide support, and they tend to be on the firmer side of the spectrum. They’re also likely to be the cheapest options as well. Most seniors will want to avoid the firmest of innerspring options, but medium-firm choices will suffice for most.
  • Foam: Foam options, particularly gel-foam or memory foam, have gained in popularity in recent years. These often softer mattresses cradle and caress the body, which is ideal for seniors with aches or pains. These mattresses typically are more expensive than innerspring mattresses. For seniors using adjustable beds to maintain the ideal sleep position, a foam mattress is necessary as innerspring options won’t bend. However, some foam options trap heat, while others may be excessively soft. A mattress that retains heat is best avoided by seniors as too much warmth can lead to tossing and turning, whereas an ultra-soft mattress may make getting in and out of bed difficult.
  • Hybrid: Combining coils and springs along with a foam layer, hybrid mattresses offer both support and comfort at a premium price. They may be softer or firmer depending on the arrangement and type of layers. As they are versatile and varied, many seniors look to hybrid mattresses for the right combination of firm support and soft comfort.

Sleep position

The way in which you sleep throughout the night has an influence on which mattress is best for you. If you’ve been sleeping in the same position your entire life, it may be hard to change, though it’s likely worth trying if you’re experiencing any pain, particularly for seniors.

  • Back sleeper: This is the recommended position for sleeping as your neck and spine are in a neutral alignment. It also helps sleepers breathe better, especially those who snore or suffer from sleep apnea. Senior back sleepers are likely to opt for a medium-firm mattress; they may be innerspring or hybrid.
  • Side sleeper: This sleep position requires some extra support around the curves of the body to prevent excess pressure on the hips, shoulders, and spine. Senior side sleepers should opt for a softer mattress top that cradles the body. Foam or hybrid mattresses work well.
  • Stomach sleeper: This position presents risks in the form of neck and back pain if the sleeper is not properly supported. A medium-firm mattress helps keep the sleeper’s stomach and spine from sinking in too deep while also providing enough support for the hips and shoulders. Foam or hybrid options are recommended for seniors who sleep on their stomachs.


Firmness is measured on a scale of one to 10. One is the softest, five to six is medium-firm, and ten is the firmest option for mattresses. Most seniors will want a firmness level somewhere in the middle. A softer mattress may be hard to get into and out of, while a firmer option may not cradle the body as needed. However, more active seniors without any chronic pain may do well with firm mattresses.


Mattress thickness varies from as little as six inches to as much as 14. Slender, smaller individuals will find their mattress needs met by a thinner option, while heavier and taller people will want a thicker-than-average mattress. It may be worth considering the height of the mattress when paired with your bed frame as some seniors may have trouble getting into taller beds.


Seniors can find mattresses fitting their needs in a variety of sizes, although queen options are the most popular. If two people will use the bed, a queen or king offers enough room, although a king may be too large, particularly for slighter individuals and those who may need extra time getting into and out of bed. If the mattress is being used by just one person, a full mattress may be ideal in some situations. Keep in mind how much space is available in the room where the bed is located as well as the size of the individual who will be using the mattress.

Did You Know?
Give your body and mattress time to become compatible. It can take a few weeks or even a month to sufficiently break in a mattress and become comfortable with it.


Edge support

Some mattresses are designed with a little more support and firmness around the edges than the rest of the mattress. This is particularly helpful for seniors who may want a softer mattress but struggle getting into and out of the bed. The firm edge offers a stronger, sturdier foundation from which to gain leverage to get up and get going. It also firmly supports you when putting on or taking off shoes and socks.


For those who sleep warm, regularly throwing off blankets or waking up feeling sweaty, you’ll want a mattress that promotes airflow and avoids trapping in heat. Gel-foam mattresses are useful at keeping sleepers cool, while a variety of hybrid options will do the trick as well depending on the materials used.

Motion and noise

Seniors who are more sensitive to stimuli when sleeping will want a mattress that reduces motion and noise, particularly if the bed is being shared. Most foam and hybrid options possess these features, eliminating the rustling that comes with a person moving around or getting in and out of bed. Specific innerspring beds, like those featuring individual pocketed coils, will also reduce motion transfer.

Sleep trial

Most companies offer a sleep trial to allow customers to test out a mattress for an extended period of time to see if it’s the right fit. The sleep trial may last only a few weeks or as long as a year in some cases.

Your mattress may arrive with an odor from manufacturing, which is completely normal. Let a breeze in the room and the smell should be gone within a few days.



Mattress protectors: SureGuard Mattress Protector
Extend the life of your mattress with a quality mattress protector. This option from SureGuard resists water and dust, enhances durability, and minimizes noise.

Duvets: Linenspa All-Season Alternative Quilted Comforter
A quality duvet provides all-encompassing warmth and coziness. We recommend this option from Linenspa, offering a hypoallergenic alternative to down feathers.

Adjustable beds: LUCID L300 Adjustable Bed Base
Some seniors may be best served by an adjustable bed that can elevate the head and feet as needed. We recommended this option from LUCID for its smooth adjustability.

Mattresses for seniors prices


You’ll find innerspring mattresses and some decent foam options for under $500, though they likely won’t be larger than queen size.


Most quality mattresses for seniors cost between $500 and $1,000. These mattresses come in all three types in a variety of firmness levels and offer some special features.


High-end mattresses, particularly hybrid options, cost $1,000 and up. They balance comfort and support, promote airflow, and reduce noise.

Did You Know?
Combination sleepers, as well as those with partners, are best served by hybrid mattresses. These are designed with both coils and foam to provide comfort and support.


  • Rotate your mattress. For the first six months, rotate your mattress 180 degrees every couple weeks to promote uniform usage. After that, you can rotate it every three months.
  • Read the warranty. Mattresses typically come with a warranty to cover materials and manufacturing. However, double-check the fine print – some may not cover shipping fees should repairs be needed.
  • Track your sleep. A fitness tracker is a useful tool, especially for seniors, in determining the quality of a night’s sleep. That information can tell you if you need to change habits or mattresses.
  • Employ pillows and toppers. Your sleeping position may be better supported by boosting areas like between the knees with pillows. A mattress topper can also help add some temporary comfort for aches and pains.
Practice healthy habits to improve your sleep. Exercise regularly and avoid alcohol, food, and screens before getting into bed


Q. How long does a mattress last?

A. On average, a mattress will last between seven and 10 years, with innerspring options having a shorter lifespan than foam and hybrid mattresses. However, a mattress can have a longer or shorter life depending on how it’s treated. Keep your mattress clean, rotate it frequently, and don’t let any kids or pets jump on it to prolong its livelihood. For those seniors who spend more time in bed, a mattress may have a shorter lifespan.

Q. What’s the best mattress for a senior suffering from back or joint pain?

A. The right mattress can help alleviate chronic pain, particularly in the back. If you’re regularly waking up feeling sore or achy, then it’s time to switch mattresses. In most cases, that means finding a hybrid mattress that matches your sleep position and balances support and comfort. Those with back pain need a mattress with enough resistance for the hips and shoulders so that pressure isn’t placed on the spine. Additionally, you may want to look for cooler mattresses with better airflow. Excess warmth can cause individuals to move around more frequently, which could mean ending up in a sleeping position where you aren’t supported.

Q. How do I change my sleep position?

A. While it’s not the easiest of tasks, changing your sleep position can help alleviate pain if your mattress doesn’t fully support you. The best way to adapt to a new sleeping position is to use pillows to guard the sides of your body against moving. It’s recommended that sleepers, particularly seniors, try to adjust to sleeping on their backs to better support the spine and allow for easier breathing.

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