10 Highest Rated Beds for People with a Herniated Disc – Our 2022 Review Guide

Transparency Disclosure – We may receive a referral fee for products purchased through the links on our site... Read More.
Disclaimer - Nothing on this website is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment... Read More Here.

Almost 80 percent of Americans experience back pain at some point in their lives. Unfortunately, this is a common occurrence that lands many individuals in a doctor's office.

For patients suffering from a herniated disc, the pain can be both chronic and debilitating. Pain in the back, legs and even feet are often reported. If you’ve got sciatica (a condition characterized by pain and tingling down the side of your lower body), it could be the result of a herniated disc.

What Do You Need Most?

We want to help you find the best product for your needs.
Click on your preferred option below and it'll lead you to our picks for a selected category.

The seriousness of the condition and the intensity of the symptoms varies, depending on the type of herniation you have and where it’s located.

The majority of the time, the herniation is in the lower back, or lumbar region of the spine. A cervical herniation is one that’s the neck region, just below the base of your skull. And finally, a herniated disc in the thoracic region can be the most serious because that part of your spine is linked to your vital organs.

Although it can be serious, many patients can heal from this condition on their own without medical intervention or surgery. However, as you might imagine, sleeping on the wrong mattress can prevent your body from healing properly, and create a vicious cycle of pain and sleepless nights.

Top 10 Mattresses for Herniated Disc

Editor's Pick

DreamCloud Premier

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Forever Warranty

DreamCloud Premier is the answer to anyone who has ever wanted to know if luxury could come out of a box, and its blend of comfort materials and supportive coils make it an excellent option for someone who suffers from spine issues.

Whether lying on your side or back, you should receive a comfort balance of pressure point relief and support.

What stands out? The system of individually wrapped coils that forms this bed’s foundation has a transitional layer of foam on top to ease you into the tailored support. This feature endeavors to hold the body level and help enhance spine alignment, which is critical for spine health.

In addition to its impressive function, DreamCloud Premier also looks high-end and luxurious, and its construction was strategized for durability. The outer cover is made from a Cashmere blend and is quilted into two layers of foam to form a EuroTop.

Best Mattress for Combination Sleepers

Zenhaven

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Dual-Sided
  • Certified Organic Cotton
  • OEKO-TEX® Certified
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

With Zenhaven, Saatva entered the market with an affordably priced all-natural latex mattress with dual-sided firmness and zoned comfort. The use of latex is great for combination sleepers because it provides plenty of bounce to make repositioning trouble-free.

Latex’s popularity has expanded over the last couple of years because of its resistance to potential allergens and temperature neutrality, but retail models can put off shoppers with higher prices. Saatva keeps luxurious features high and costs low by selling online, an advantage if you are looking to manage your back pain with a latex mattress.

What makes it unique?

  • All four layers of latex in Zenhaven come from sustainable and natural sources and are manufactured using the Talalay process, which increases the material’s consistency and gives it a more springy feel. In addition, the bed’s outer cover is made from certified organic cotton that breathes well.

Best Mattress for Pressure Relief

Nectar

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Memory Foam Mattress
  • CertiPUR-US®
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Forever Warranty

When it comes to quality pressure relief, memory foam reigns supreme. Nectar’s flagship model is a memory foam mattress built with three foam layers that deliver a great balance of pressure relief while giving the spine ample support.

The bed’s memory foam layer lies just underneath the cover and is three inches thick. Gel is infused in this memory foam to prevent it from becoming too warm. The second layer is two inches of soft conventional foam that provides extra support and transitions the sleeper into the firm foam base below. The bottom of the Nectar is a 7-inch thick standard conventional foam that’s highly dense to keep the sleeper’s body well-supported and prevent exacerbating back pain.

Why should you get it?

  • Most sleepers should feel great spinal support from the Nectar, which has a firmness rating of 6.5 and a true medium-firm feel.

Best Mattress for Side Sleepers

Brooklyn Aurora

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Three Firmness Options
  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • Made in the USA
  • 120-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty

If you’re a side sleeper experiencing a herniated disc, you’ll need a bed that supplies adequate pressure relief and keeps the hips from dipping too much. Brooklyn Bedding, an American brand based in Phoenix, offers a viable option with their Aurora mattress.

The Aurora is a hybrid available in three firmness options: Soft, Medium, and Firm. The firmness you enjoy most will depend on your body frame, but most sleepers should find a good fit with the Medium model.

The Aurora’s construction includes three comfort layers, an 8-inch supportive coil unit, and a dense foam base for additional support. While the comfort layers help ease your pressure points, the coils and dense foam below help ensure your hips stay level.

Why we love it

  • Customers get a 120-night trial period to test out the bed.
  • The foams are CertiPUR-US® certified, and the mattress is fully made in the United States.

Best Mattress for Heavy People

The WinkBed

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Three Firmness Options
  • Made in the USA
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Limited Warranty

Heavier sleepers tend to prefer firmer beds because these do a better job of preventing them from sinking too far into the mattress. When your body sinks too much, this can create poor spine alignment, which is worse news for those with a herniated disc.

The WinkBed is available in three firmness levels, including a firm option. For heavy sleepers, the WinkBed Firm model should provide ample support. However, those weighing over 300 pounds may consider the WinkBed Plus, a special version of the WinkBed specifically designed for those carrying significantly more weight.

What stands out?

  • The WinkBed comes with a Tencel cover, an eco-friendly textile designed to wick away moisture and keep sleepers cool.
  • The multiple firmness options allow shoppers to find a mattress that fits their preferences and needs more closely.
  • The WinkBed comes with an industry-leading lifetime limited warranty, covering the product for as long as you have it.

Best Mattress for Back Sleepers

Bear Original

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Celliant® Technology
  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 365-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty

The Bear Original is a memory foam mattress with a true medium-firm feel that should give the right amount of support back sleepers need to keep their pain from worsening. The Bear’s layers include graphite-gel memory foam, responsive transition foam, and a high-density foam base.

The Bear stands at a 10-inch frame and provides sleepers with a gradual transition from the soft top to the firm base. The foams in this bed are CertiPUR-US® certified to ensure the product is safe for consumers.

Bear offers shopping a highly appealing deal. The mattress comes with a full-year trial and a lifetime warranty.

What makes it unique?

  • Bear’s claim to fame is its use of innovative Celliant® technology in the cover. The company claims Celliant® can improve circulation and reduce inflammation by converting heat energy into infrared light. Though the science on this is ongoing, this could prove highly useful for someone experiencing a herniated disc.

Best Memory Foam Mattress

Layla

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Dual-sided Firmness
  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 120-Night Trial
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Made in the USA

Research suggests that back or side sleeping is ideal for those with herniated discs, but depending on your preference, your firmness requirements may be quite different.

If you are unsure which position will best help you alleviate your back pain, you may consider a dual-sided mattress like Layla. This mattress offers extra support for your pressure points on one side that typically works best for exclusive side sleepers, and, on the flip side, a firmer surface that many back sleepers prefer.

What makes it great? Both sides of the Layla deliver exceptional pressure relief that contours to your shape for a classic feel with several cooling features to keep your body from overheating. The copper that is infused into the memory foam helps heat disperse deeper into the mattress and air channels created by its convoluted “egg crate” structure let it escape the bed.

The attractive hexagon-patterned cover also incorporates a cooling gel that you should notice is cool to the touch. If you are a combination sleeper and require easier repositioning to keep from aggravating your spinal pain, you may consider the firmer side. However, dedicated side sleepers may particularly benefit from the reactive support of the soft side.

Best Mattress for Shoulder Pain

Casper

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty
  • Designed and Assembled in the USA

The designers of Casper, a well-known veteran in the bed-in-a-box industry, continually enhancing their design to increase its universality.

This brand strives for a feel that can adapt and accommodate a multitude of individual body shapes, and their goal has never been closer than with the introduction of Zoned Support™ to enhance their all-foam spine alignment system.

Casper’s layering strategy improves temperature regulation and the bed’s versatility. The top layer is soft for comfortable body conformance and easy repositioning, and with each subsequent layer, the firmness increases incrementally. This approach aims to provide a balance of pressure point relief and support for different body weights.

What makes it special? The firmnesses in the third transitional layer are divided into three zones so that hips remain level with the shoulders and knees, which receive extra pressure relief. This is especially advantageous for those with heavier midsections who are looking for premium spine alignment that can help reduce pain points associated with herniated discs.

Best Innerspring Mattress

Avocado Green

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Latex Hybrid
  • Eco-Friendly Materials
  • 6 Safety and Environmental Certifications
  • 365-Night Trial
  • 25-Year Warranty

The Avocado Green is an innerspring option that takes things up a notch by incorporating plenty of eco-friendly materials in its construction. This mattress features several layers of Dunlop latex along with an 8-inch individually pocketed coil unit. If you’re concerned about repositioning aggravating back discomfort, the combination of latex and coils should allow for easier movement.

Eco-conscious shoppers should love Avocado’s Green use of multiple environmentally-friendly materials, including organic cotton, organic latex, organic wool, and upcycle steel coils. The mattress boasts as many as six third-party certifications to ensure your product meets the highest health, safety, and sustainability standards.

Why we love it

  • The highly-supportive steel cols should help mitigate back discomfort for those experiencing a herniated disc.
  • Latex is naturally cooler than traditional foams, a benefit for hot sleepers.
  • With multiple eco-friendly materials, Avocado Green is one of the most sustainable mattresses on the market.

Best Cooling Mattress

Purple

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • CertiPUR-US® Certified
  • 100-Night Trial
  • 10-Year Warranty
  • Made in the USA

Purple was designed by rocket scientists that weren’t satisfied with the potential of traditional materials and wanted to create something brand new to provide better spine alignment with premium pressure point relief. The result was a gel-like polymer grid that’s very stretchy and responsive to changes in weight.

The company has incorporated several cooling features in this bed to keep hot sleepers comfortable. First, the Stretch Max Cover is designed for cooling and softness. Second, the grid-like shape of Purple’s Hyper-Elastic Polymer™ should foster additional ventilation.

What is its best feature?

  • The Hyper-Elastic Polymer™ comfort system was designed to respond and wrap around any shape, collapsing under higher weight concentrations while contouring to your lumbar or waist. This more precise body conformance should help alleviate any pressure points that can worsen back pain while keeping your hips level with your shoulders and knees.

Common Types of Disc Herniation and Symptoms

So, what exactly is a herniated disc and what happens if you have one?

Picture your spine for a moment. We’re all familiar with the line of vertebrae that goes from our skull down to our lower back. There’s a space between each of these vertebrae, and within that space are discs. Their purpose is to provide mobility. They function like ball bearings.

The discs themselves are fibrous with layers of ligaments that protect a center core of gel-like fluid. If you picture the rings of a tree, that’s what a section of a spinal disc looks like. The annulus fibrosus make up the outer rings, and the soft center is called the nucleus pulposus.

You’ll probably never need to know these terms unless you end up as a contestant on Jeopardy or find yourself if a game of bar trivia near Harvard or something.

A herniation occurs when those fibers get damaged or degenerate. The inner fluid begins to push outward, distorting the shape of the disc. The result is the disc either bulges or ruptures, depending on how damaged and degenerated the fibers become.

When doctors look at the MRIs of people between the ages of 35 and 60, they find that approximately 33% to 57% of the population has at least one bulging disc. Often, there are no symptoms associated with this spinal abnormality. This happens when the disc is pushing forward (anterior), versus one that bulges toward posteriorly (or backward).

When the disc pushes back into your nerves (posterior), that’s when patients experience symptoms of back pain and even decreased organ function.

Depending on the type of spinal disc herniation you have, the symptoms vary:

Cervical

The area of your vertebral column classified as your cervical spine starts at the base of your neck and ends at your shoulders. When one of these discs herniates, it can result in neck pain, but the most prevalent symptoms of a cervical herniated disc will be numbness and tingling in your shoulder and arm. Usually, it’s only on one side of the body and is often diagnosed as pinched nerve even though it’s technically a herniation.

This type of herniation isn’t as common as one in the lumbar region, which we’ll discuss now.

illustration of a person trying to ease neck pain

Lumbar

Lumbar herniated discs originate in the lower back region. It’s common for this to happen as a result of lifting something that’s too heavy and lifting it improperly. Even though it seems to occur suddenly, it’s often the result of long-term wear over time.

When patients experience symptoms, it’s usually in the form of lower back pain, which is often extremely painful. Other patients report sciatica as well as the inability to sit or lie in a comfortable position.

illustration of a person having lower back pain

Thoracic

The thoracic region is between the cervical and lumbar regions. It’s in the center of our chest cavity, and this part of our spine is connected to all our nerves that control organ function. The reason a thoracic herniation is the most problematic is that if it cuts off communication to an organ, it can have serious health implications.

Rather than injury, the cause of a thoracic herniation is typically degeneration over the course of several years. While cervical and lumbar herniations tend to be seen starting at around 30 years of age, a thoracic herniation usually manifests between the ages of 50 and 60.

Why You Need a Great Mattress if You Have Spinal Disc Herniation

We all deserve a great mattress, regardless of the medical issues we may have. However, if you suffer from any spinal problems, sleeping on the right mattress makes a big difference.

Remember, you need to keep your spine in proper alignment. If you have a poor-quality mattress or one that is too soft or firm, it’s going to push your back out of its natural position. If you’re trying to heal yourself, or you simply want a decent night of sleep, owning a great mattress is a requirement.

A good, quality mattress will also have the ideal blend of pressure-point relief and support. What we mean by pressure relief is a mattress’s ability to cradle or cushion the denser parts of your body to keep you comfortable and in a neutral spine position. If you’ve ever been in bed and had your arm fall asleep before you do, that could be a sure sign that your mattress is not the right one for your needs.

Support goes hand-in-hand with pressure point relief. They balance each other out. So, while pressure relief has to do with the softness of a bed, support deals more with the firmness. For example, even though you want to feel a soft surface that relieves pressure when you lie down, you don’t want to sink too deeply into the surface of the bed. That’s where support comes in.

A great mattress will provide the perfect balance of both of these factors.

Mattress for Herniated Disc Buying Considerations

Mattress Material & Construction

There are several different types of mattresses to choose from. In this section, we’ll outline the options:

memory foam latex innerspring and hybrid mattress
  • Memory foam – developed by NASA scientists in the 1960s, memory foam is a soft, cushiony material that holds its shape, even after you put weight on it. Hence the term “memory.” When you lie down on a mattress made out of memory foam, it will conform to the shape of your body and keep that shape during the night.This is typically a great choice mattress for herniated discs, as long as it’s high-quality and made by a reputable mattress company. Because memory foam in cheap mattresses wears out faster, it’s important to choose a brand that is known for durability and long-lasting comfort.

    View Our Guide:
    Top Rated Memory Foam Beds


  • Hybrid – these beds combine an innerspring or coil base with a memory foam or latex top layer. This type of bed is another good choice out of the four types of mattresses to choose from. Hybrids tend to provide the ideal blend of pressure relief and support, but they’re sometimes more expensive.

    Read More:
    Best Hybrid Beds


  • Coil – also referred to as an innerspring mattress, coil beds can sometimes have a harder time delivering on the needs for this issue. First of all, they don’t tend to hold their shape over the years if it doesn't have high-quality construction, so some people can expect uncomfortable sagging.Second, most coils don’t allow for even weight distribution. As you know from a previous section, different parts of our bodies have varying density levels. If you lie down on a coil mattress that isn’t “zoned” to accommodate your shoulders and torso, you’re likely going to feel it in your back.

  • Latex – these beds are similar to memory foam, but instead of foam, latex is made from the sap of a rubber tree. There’s also synthetic latex, which is a petroleum-based product. We often highly recommend latex mattresses, but if you have a herniated disk in your back or neck, be sure to check that the sleeping surface is not too firm.

Spinal Alignment & Support

Herniated disc sufferers require a sleeping surface that keeps their back in proper alignment, and their entire body should be well-supported. A poor-quality mattress will have areas that sag, and that further exacerbates back pain.

How do you know if your spine is in proper alignment when you’re in bed? The best way to determine this is to lie on your side and have someone take a picture of you from behind. Your spine should keep a straight line. If you don’t feel comfortable asking someone to take the picture (we know, it’s a bit of an odd request), set a timer on your phone, prop it up on something, and take a picture that way.

Check Out Our Guide: Highest Rated Beds for Back Pain

Illustration of a Woman Sleeping on Her Side on a Soft Mattress

Pressure Relief

When it comes to choosing the right type of bed for pressure relief, we’ve found that memory foam mattress often performs best here. You need something that cradles the heavy parts of your body while also providing ample support. Because memory foam is designed to contour all of your curves, it is a great material.

Firmness

People with back pain are often told to sleep on an exceptionally firm surface, and even the floor. However, this can sometimes make it even worse.

Like we’ve said, if you have a herniated disc, it’s crucial to maintain proper spinal alignment when you lie down. A too-firm surface isn’t going to allow for any contouring. The result is that no matter your sleep position, your spine is going to jut into a position that’s neither natural nor comfortable.

Cooling

Have you ever noticed that when you’re in pain, you tend to feel hotter? If you sleep on a mattress that doesn’t allow for any air flow, your already heated body is going to feel even more uncomfortable.

Memory foam is not known for being a cool material, mostly because the contouring traps body heat. We recommend looking for a memory foam mattress that has either gel or copper infusions, which draw heat away from the body. There are also some brands that offer something called “open cell” construction that have pockets of air that get released when you put weight on them.

Find Out More: Top Cooling Mattresses

What’s the Best Sleeping Position for a Slipped Disc?

A slipped disc is a term often used to describe a herniation, though it’s technically a misnomer because the disc isn’t actually slipping. Rather, it’s being pushed out of place due to being misshapen.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, we can talk about the best sleeping position for a herniated disc. The answer to this question lies in where in your vertebral column the herniation has expressed itself: neck, thoracic or lumbar.

Here are general guidelines for each sleeping position:

Back: Sleeping on your back is usually the best choice, though there are a couple of caveats. If your disc herniation is in your neck area, you should focus on which pillow you use. Ideally, a cervical pillow with a center opening to let your head sink while supporting your neck is best.

Also, when you sleep on your back, and you have a herniated disc, you’ll probably feel most comfortable with a pillow underneath your knees.

Find Out More: How to Properly Sleep on Your Back


Side: As long as you have the right mattress, side sleeping can be a fantastic choice, especially if you have a herniated lumbar disc. You can try sleeping with a pillow between your knees to ensure that your spine doesn’t twist during the night. You can also try a cervical pillow regardless of where your herniation is located. By keeping your cervical spine in place, it can help to make sure the rest of your back stays in alignment.


Stomach: This position is not typically recommended at all because it can force the hips down and cause your back to arch in an uncomfortable way. If you insist on stomach sleeping, you can place a pillow under your pelvis and at your knees. Choose something that is either very thin, or opt for nothing at all.

woman sleeping on her back illustration

More Frequently Asked Questions About Mattresses for Herniated Disc

Can a bad mattress cause a herniated disc?

A bad mattress won’t cause a disc to herniate, but it can prolong or prevent the healing process. Sleeping on the wrong mattress can also accelerate the degeneration process, so even though it won’t be responsible for the actual herniation, it can be a contributing factor.

How to sleep with a herniated disc in your neck?

When you have a herniated disc in this area, the most important thing to keep in mind is neck support. This means sleeping on a pillow that is slightly higher under your neck than your head. Using cervical pillows that dip in the center and have a gentle, rounded ridge at the base of your skull can be very helpful.

Want to see more? Check out our complete guide for best pillows for neck pain.

What is degenerative disc disease?

Degenerative disc disease (DDD) is not technically a disease. Rather, it’s the long-term degeneration that happens to your spine as you age. However, age is not the only thing that causes this, and just because we get older, it doesn’t mean we have to experience DDD.

The most common cause of this happening is daily stress, minor injuries, obesity, and lack of movement. For those who sit all day, they are at a higher risk of having discs degenerate. Some supplements, along with a nutrient-rich diet, moderate exercise, and avoiding obesity can prevent and even reverse degenerative disc disease.

Illustration of a Man Heavily Snoring

Can this Condition Cause Sleep Apnea?

While excess soft tissue in the mouth and throat often is the culprit behind obstructive sleep apnea, the less common Central SA may originate in spinal trauma or injury, which can include herniated discs. This is because CSA is most often caused by a disconnect between the muscles you use to breathe and the brain.

Interested in exploring further?
Learn more in our bed guide for people with sleep apnea.

Conclusion

With millions of Americans suffering daily from back pain, it’s no wonder that herniated discs are so prevalent. It’s kind of scary to think about how they develop over a long period of time, and how sleeping on a bad mattress can contribute to the problem. Hopefully, you found this guide helpful, especially if you’re a herniated disc sufferer!

Sources and References:

Our team covers as many areas of expertise as we do time zones, but none of us started here as a so-called expert on sleep. What we do share is a willingness to ask questions (lots of them), seek experts, and dig deep into conventional wisdom to see if maybe there might be a better path towards healthy living. We apply what we learn not only to our company culture, but also how we deliver information to our over 12.7M readers.

Sleep research is changing all the time, and we are 100% dedicated to keeping up with breakthroughs and innovations. You live better if you sleep better. Whatever has brought you here, we wish you luck on your journey towards better rest.

Sleep Advisor