If you sleep on your side often, chances are that you have awakened in the morning with back pain, side pain or neck stiffness. The reasons for this are simple—you don’t have the best mattress topper for side sleepers.
Side sleeping requires some support. After all, you need to keep your spine in proper alignment, while keeping your neck straight.
Failing to do this can result in a variety of health problems. Some of the most commonly reported of these include back pain, hip pain, stiffness in the neck or spine and numbness in the limbs.
If these conditions are not treated, they can become chronic. Of course, this is not something you want.
However, finding proper bed pads or mattress toppers can significantly improve your health as they properly support your body. Furthermore, having a mattress topper can ensure you have a better night’s sleep.
Imagine waking up from a night of dreamless, refreshing sleep to find that you are not stiff and your back doesn’t hurt. Isn’t that something worth dreaming about?
Now you don’t have to dream. By the time you finish reading this article, you will know what mattress toppers are, the health and comfort benefits of having one and how to pick one for yourself.
At that point, if you’re still confused, just keep reading. We will end the article with reviews of the best mattress pads on the market for 2020.
What are Bed Toppers?
Just as it sounds, a bed pad is a pad that you put on top of your mattress. They serve several functions.
Firstly, a good mattress topper can keep you comfortable at night. They can provide support or cushioning. Mattress toppers are also great for your back.They will cradle and support your spine, hips, and other painful pressure points.
Finally, a mattress pad that contains wool or other moisture-wicking fabrics is great for hot weather. The moisture-wicking and temperature-regulating materials carry away your body heat as well as any moisture and keep you cool all night, so that you wake up refreshed.
Mattress Protectors vs Mattress Toppers
Before we dive into the interesting world of bed pads, it is important to discuss the difference between mattress protectors and mattress toppers.
Mattress protectors are thin, quilted sheets. These are usually made of cotton, and they don’t generally provide much in the way of comfort.
These protectors, as their name implies, are mainly for protecting your mattress from wear, as well as spills, allergens and dust mites.
Mattress toppers, on the other hand, tend to be thicker. They also tend to have comfort features added, such as moisture wicking fabric, heat transferring gel or memory foam to ease your aches and pains.
It is recommended that you get both a mattress topper and a pad. Put the topper on the mattress.
Put the mattress protector on top, and finish it all off with your favorite sheets. The mattress pad will not only protect your new topper, saving your investment, but it will also hold everything in place.
Who Needs a Mattress Topper?
Everyone can benefit from the use of a high-quality bed topper. However, there are some groups in particular that will appreciate this inexpensive luxury.
If you have hip pain, you know how hard it can be to get comfortable at night. You spend the entire time you should be sleeping tossing and turning, and you wake up in the morning feeling like you’ve been run over by a train.A memory foam mattress topper could eliminate this problem. These toppers contour to the shape of your body, cradling you and ensuring proper hip placement and relief of pressure points.
You will no longer have to fuss with extra pillows just to get your legs into position.
A topper can also benefit full-figured people. These individuals can have a lot of trouble sleeping, because the springs in a mattress can create uncomfortable pressure points on their back or sides.
A mattress pad placed between you and the mattress can cushion these pressure points. This can make them a must-have for heavy person.
For Bed Sores
Some people cannot get out of bed or change positions due to medical conditions or recent surgeries. These people can find themselves developing bed sores.
Bed sores are also known as pressure ulcers. They occur when there is constant pressure on one part of the body, generally a bony part such as the tail bone, heels or ankles.
A gel or foam mattress pad can alleviate the pressure, stopping these ulcers from developing and provide relief for bed sores that are already there.
For Elderly People
As you get older, you may notice your skin thinning. You also may begin to lose weight.
This can make your bed an absolute torture chamber. The springs that once seemed like they were nicely buried begin to poke you in uncomfortable places, and you spend the whole night awake and tossing.
You wake up in the morning completely stiff. If you have arthritis, it only gets worse.
A mattress pad could greatly improve this situation. Memory foam mattress pads will not only support your body in the proper alignment for optimum health but they can also ensure that you do not wake up stiff and sore. Feather toppers, on the other hand, allow you to have the luxurious softness of sleeping on a cloud.
For Herniated Discs
Mattress toppers are good for herniated disc sufferers. The proper topper can alleviate the lower back pain.
After back surgery, you will be required to sleep on your stomach or side. Bed toppers provide support for both these sleeping positions.
Is your mattress past its prime? If so, it’s time for a mattress topper.
No, the topper won’t return your mattress to its glory days. It will, however, make your mattress more comfortable.
This can allow you to get an extra year or two out of your aging mattress before you have to get a new one.
So, you have decided you definitely need a mattress topper for your bed. As with any product you want to buy, it is important to ask yourself some questions before you commit to a purchase. After all, it would be tragic to spend money on mattress protection that isn’t right for your needs.
Why Do You Need a Mattress Topper?
Before you go out shopping, you must ask yourself why you need a topper at all. There are several types of toppers out there, and each performs a different function.
For example, if you simply want to add cushioning to a mattress that is too firm, you will want a thick, soft mattress cover.
However, if your goal is to ease pain, you will do better with high-density latex or memory foam as these tend to add extra joint support.
These toppers are also good for back pain.
If you have a sleeping partner who has a different firmness preference than you, and you have a king bed, you could buy two extra long twin toppers, which will give you each the firmness you like. However, if your bed is a queen or a full but still want custom firmness, you’ll have to buy two toppers and cut them in half.This works best on foam toppers. Never cut feather or polyester blend toppers.
What’s the Best Type of Mattress Topper?
Mattress toppers are made of a variety of materials. Each offers a different sleeping experience.
Latex is the first material that mattress toppers can be made from. It is a great topper for neck and back pain suffers, but it is not for everyone.
Here is a list of pros and cons so you can decide if this rubber derivative is right for you.
- Latex is antimicrobial and nonallergenic. (Unless you have a latex allergy.)
- Latex is usually firmer than memory foam, and bouncier as well. This makes it excellent for people with joint pain.
- Though there are both natural and synthetic latex on the market, natural latex is more durable.
- It doesn’t transmit motion. No longer will your partner wake you up at night with their tossing and turning.
- Natural latex is expensive.
- When you buy a latex mattress topper, you may have to contend with a rubbery smell, at least for a while.
- If you are someone who gets hot during the night, latex may not be right for you. You might find yourself waking up covered in sweat.
- For some people, latex is much too firm.
- Some people may also have a problem with the bouncy feel of latex.
- If you have latex allergies, obviously this is not the right topper for you.
The next material used in mattress toppers is memory foam. This tends to be a bit less firm and bouncy than latex.
This makes it an excellent mattress topper for those with upper back pain. However, there are other pros and cons.
- Memory foam is soft and comfortable.
- It reduces pressure on your aching, arthritic joints.
- Memory foam adds considerable comfort to aging mattresses.
- Like latex, it also reduces motion from a restless partner.
- Like latex, memory foam can be hot.
- Memory foam is not easy to turn over on. Prepare to have to fight to roll over.
- It is expensive.
- It gives off an unpleasant odor when it’s new.
Do you like the feel of feathers? Do you not want a feather topper for one reason or another?
Polyester blend toppers are a great substitute for people who want the feel of feathers without the noise and other problems.
- These toppers are some of the least expensive.
- There is no foul odor to contend with.
- They provide a bit of softness.
- Sadly, a polyester blend topper doesn’t provide too much support or cushioning.
- Like latex and memory foam, they can be hot.
- They can lump up over time, as the polyester fibers settle to one end.
- Polyester blend toppers tend to compress with use, meaning that they get harder over time.
Feather toppers, also called feather beds, are the fourth type of topper. They are luxuriously soft, but they don’t provide much support.
Make sure you’re not allergic to feathers before buying one of these toppers.
- They’re luxuriously soft.
- Feather toppers are less expensive than memory foam or latex.
- These toppers do not tend to retain heat.
- They don’t hinder turning over.
- Feather shafts sometimes poke you as they worm their way out of the fabric.
- Feathers are the noisiest type of topper since you get both the fuzzy part of the feather as well as the shaft.
- Feathers compress over time, meaning you’ll have to take your topper off the bed and shake it.
Wool is the final topper material, and it has some advantages the other materials do not.
- Wool mattress toppers are soft and comfortable.
- Because they are made from an animal’s actual coat, they are apt to be warm in winter and cool in summer.
- Wool will not keep you from rolling over in bed.
- These toppers tend to be really durable.
- For most people, wool is antimicrobial and hypoallergenic.
- Wool can be quite hard to find.
- Much like memory foam and latex, wool can be quite expensive.
- when a wool topper is new, it can give off a mild odor of sheep.
A Bit More About Firmness
Now that you know a bit more about the types of topper choices out there, let’s talk about firmness. Feathers, polyester blends and wool are all relatively soft. If your mattress is already firm, these may be good choices.
If you plan on getting a latex topper, either natural or synthetic, the firmness is likely to be spelled out for you. However, with memory foam, that is not the case. The density of the foam will dictate the firmness of the topper while the thickness dictates how supportive it will be.
The average thickness of toppers is around two inches. However, you can find thicker ones.
You also need to keep an eye on foam density if possible. Three pound foam is soft.
Four pound is medium, and five is firm.
Therefore, if you are a large person, you likely will need a mattress topper that is at least four inches thick and four or five pounds.
What Are Your Allergies?
Before buying a mattress topper, consider your allergies. If you are allergic to dust, avoid feathers and their derivatives, as they can harbor dust mites.
Wool toppers are some of the best ones for allergy sufferers, though contact with wool can cause skin irritation.
A small note for those of you who get overheated at night. If you are going with a memory foam topper, find one that has a cotton blend cover, or can give you one for an additional fee.
The cotton cover will improve air flow as it is more breathable. The breathability is what keeps you cool.
There are also memory foam mattresses which incorporate a cooling gel technology.
What is your budget?
Mattress toppers come in a variety of price points. That’s right. Cheap mattress protection can be bought for under $50.
However, if you want something truly comfortable, or if you have a mattress that is larger than a twin, you’ll need to spend a bit more.
Don’t let that scare you. You do not have to drop $300 on a great mattress topper.
You simply need to keep your budget in mind when choosing your bed pad.
Best Mattress Topper for Side Sleepers Reviews
Now you know how to buy a mattress topper. However, there are so many different types of fabrics and materials that you might be confused.
For that reason, we included reviews for the top seven mattress toppers on the market today.
Dream Foam Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper
This two-inch-thick topper will help restore your aging mattress. It is made of soft visco-elastic memory foam.
These toppers are made in the US, with certified Certi-PUR-us foam. What does that mean for you as a consumer?
Certi-PUR-US foam is made without ozone depleters and other harsh chemicals. This foam is also flame-retardant.
As a bonus, for those of you who sleep on sofa beds, this mattress topper is easily folded into the sofa. No longer will you have to sleep on a sofa bed without a mattress protector.
This topper sleeps amazingly, and you simply can’t beat the price. If you are on a budget and want a mattress topper for under $100, this one is the best of the best.
This is also the best mattress topper for joint pain, as it cradles and supports your body with the lightest, airiest, most responsive foam ever.
Lucid Gel Mattress Topper
If you like the feel of memory foam, but need a cooling mattress topper, the Lucid Gel mattress topper cannot be surpassed. This bed pad features a special memory foam formula and is also infused with a gel layer to help with temperature control.
The Lucid topper also aligns the spine and cradles your body for the ultimate sleeping experience and eliminates pressure points. This is truly the best mattress pad for joint pain or for upper back pain.
The memory foam in this mattress is light, airy and responds to your movements. No longer will you have to fight just to turn over in bed.
Also, this topper does not have any bad odors. You can throw it onto your bed right away.
Best Price Memory Foam Topper
This topper is great if you need to decrease the firmness of a mattress. It is medium soft, and very supportive.
This is the best mattress topper for back pain. Even if you are overweight, you won’t sink through.
The Best Price Mattress topper features memory foam at a density of 3 pounds on top and high-density memory foam at a density of 2 pounds on the bottom. This makes it heavy enough to not slide around on most beds.
As a bonus, this topper costs under $200. Prepare to have a good night’s sleep, without breaking the bank.
ViscoSoft Memory Foam Topper
This topper is made of denser, firmer memory foam. This would make it an excellent topper for air bed users who can find themselves sinking into their beds.
The foam used in this topper is Certi-PUR. This mattress pad will not harm the environment, and you can feel good about using it.
If you tend to overheat, this topper is breathable. This increased air flow and the plush gel included will allow you to experience a more comfortable, less clammy night’s sleep.
Unlike most of the toppers we have discussed here, this one includes a slip-resistant cover. The cover is made from bamboo rayon and polyester which also keeps you cool.
Furthermore, the bottom is slip-resistant and features elastic straps to secure it to your mattress. You won’t have to worry about this cooling mattress topper sliding off the bed.
CR Gel-infused Mattress Topper
This mattress topper from CR is unique in that it features Air cell technology. This is a fancy way of saying that the memory foam in this pad is ventilated and gel-infused.
The vents capture heat. The gel ensures a cool night’s sleep.
Furthermore, this mattress eliminates pressure points which makes it the best mattress topper for stomach sleepers.
There is also no motion transfer. Your partner, if you have one, will sleep just as well as you do.
The topper covers are entirely washable. They are also stain and spill-resistant.This means that you simply have to wipe them down instead of having to wash them every time you spill something.
If you are on a budget, this topper will serve you well, for a very long time.
Visco-Elastic Memory Foam Topper
If you are someone who needs a firmer topper, this one may be the best option. It is made of 3-inch thick memory foam at a 4-pound density.
This topper makes any mattress more supportive by fitting over the sagging spots. It is also a cheaper solution than buying a new mattress.
The memory foam on this topper will gently cradle you. Prepare to feel as if you are sleeping on a cloud.
Because you are not tossing and turning, you will sleep better as well. Though this topper does not have any gel inside, it feels as if it does.
Interestingly, when this topper is cool, it is firmer. As it heats up, it softens. This means that it will mold to your body in just a matter of minutes, making it truly the best mattress pad for side sleepers.
Sleepjoy Visco2 Ventilated Memory Foam Mattress Topper
If you are looking for a versatile, memory foam mattress topper, check out this one from Sleepjoy. This topper comes in not only a variety of sizes to fit any bed but a variety of densities as well.
Simply pick the density that fits your body type and sleeping position.
If you are concerned about the environment, you will love this ventilated topper. Instead of chemicals, this bed pad is made from plant-based ingredients.
With this mattress protector, there are no harsh chemicals released into the environment. Furthermore, there will be no nasty odor to contend with and all you will smell is the scent of green tea.
Do not wash this topper. If you spill something on it, simply spot clean the surface, and you’re done.
Mattress toppers are a bit of luxury that you can have if living on a budget. They are also great for joint pain, neck and back pain, arthritis, and many other complaints.
There are many types of materials used when making toppers. Each one has its pros and cons.
Mattress toppers will support all types of sleepers. Prepare to have the best night’s sleep ever.
Now you have all the information that you need in order to buy a mattress topper. You can go to your local bed and bath store and find the best mattress topper for side sleepers, and not spend a fortune doing it.