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Bad start with new latex mattress 15 May 2015 14:35 #1

With some trepidation, I decided to replace the mattress that I had that was still relatively new but not working out so well (discussed in an earlier post ). The new mattress is the "Healthy Back Bliss Elegance Pure Latex Mattress." In the store, it felt fine, and I thought that I had stayed on it long enough to get an idea of whether it would hurt my back. Near as I can tell, I wasn't "hammocking" on any of the Healthy Back mattresses. First night, though, after some time lying down on it, I got pain in my shoulder blades.

This is not the first time that such pain has been an issue. It started being an issue with my first memory foam mattress and after a while, it ended up being an issue on my second memory foam mattress if I didn't lay down just right on it and had just the right pillow (and even then that could lead to pain elsewhere in my back). So whatever it is, it's a problem that has occurred across mattresses to various degrees. (Before I got my new mattress, I did see a doctor, who thought it was muscle strain and that I should try a warm compress.) With my current mattress, which I've had a couple days, tucking my pillow underneath my shoulders seems to help somewhat.

To say this is getting frustrating is putting it mildly. About the best thing I can say about my new mattress is that I shouldn't have to worry about a topper firming up the mattress because it blocks heat from getting to the memory foam layer -- and for a la-dee-da expensive mattress, that's ridiculously faint praise.

Any ideas on how to survive the 30 days that I need to keep the mattress?

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Last edit: by jjramsey.

Bad start with new latex mattress 15 May 2015 16:28 #2

Hi jjramsey,

With my current mattress, which I've had a couple days, tucking my pillow underneath my shoulders seems to help somewhat.

To say this is getting frustrating is putting it mildly. About the best thing I can say about my new mattress is that I shouldn't have to worry about a topper firming up the mattress because it blocks heat from getting to the memory foam layer -- and for a la-dee-da expensive mattress, that's ridiculously faint praise.

Any ideas on how to survive the 30 days that I need to keep the mattress?


It would really depend on the reasons for your "symptoms" and whether your mattress is too soft or too firm for you and I also don't know your body type or have any reference points for mattresses that have worked well for you in the past but there is more about the most common symptoms that people may experience on a mattress and some of the most likely reasons for them in post #2 here and there are also some comments in posts #2 and #3 here that may also be helpful.

The Elegance is the same as the PLB Beautiful which is a very soft mattress and based on your comments and feedback and the fact that a pillow under your shoulders seems to help) if I had to guess (and it would only be a guess) I would say that the mattress is probably too soft for your body type and sleeping positions and you may be better off choosing firmer mattresses than you have been considering up till now.

If your mattress is too soft then some of the suggestions in post #2 here may also be helpful until you can exchange your mattress.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by Phoenix.

Bad start with new latex mattress 15 May 2015 16:30 #3

jjramsey wrote: This is not the first time that such pain has been an issue.

Unfortunately, you've already displayed a history with issues in the shoulder region. I would definitely seek some professional advice via an osteopath or physical therapist to see if there is a structural issue that can be addressed. It would be nice if some form of strengthening/stretching could assist with your shoulder issues.

Regarding using your new mattress, you didn't mention if you slept mostly on your side or back. Quite often issues in the cervical/upper thoracic region are pillow related. If you're a back sleeper and the pillow propping under your shoulders provided relief, this could point to an issue with your flexibility or kyphotic curvature in that area.

I would start baseline with a structural assessment and then try to move on from there. I know it's a hassle changing mattresses, and if there is something you can address physically then you can fix that first and not have to constantly be changing sleep products.

Maybe not the answer you were seeking, but I hope my experience/opinion is helpful.

Good luck!
Jeff
Jeff Scheuer, The Beducator™ Owner of Mattress To Go
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Bad start with new latex mattress 15 May 2015 17:17 #4

Phoenix wrote: It would really depend on the reasons for your "symptoms" and whether your mattress is too soft or too firm for you and I also don't know your body type

Well, I'm 5' 9" and about 180 pounds, if that helps. My build is overall roughly somewhere between mesomorphic and ectomorphic,

I would say that the mattress is probably too soft for your body type and sleeping positions and you may be better off choosing firmer mattresses than you have been considering up till now.

When I tried the firmer mattresses at the Healthy Back store, they felt a bit harder on my shoulder blades than this mattress did, with discomfort strongest nearer the tip of the blade. Not to mention that the first time this was a problem, it was with a rather hard mattress. Given that I'm not so sure about the "too soft" theory. Also, last time, you said that the shoulder blade pain could indicate a hunched position, but I'm more hunched with the pillow partly tucked under my shoulders. Shoulder blade pain seems to happen the more straight my spine is.

(FWIW, the specs of the "Elegance" and "Beautiful" mattresses indicate that they are not quite the same. Both are 12" thick, but the "Beautiful" purports to have two 3" inch comfort layers, each apparently with a different softness, over a 6" support, while the "Elegance" is supposed to have one 5" comfort layer over 6" of support over a 1" "stabilization base." I'm not sure how the old "Talalay SS" and "Talalay S" used to describe the layers of the "Elegance" mattress translate into whatever marketing terms that Pure Latex Bliss now uses for their "Beautiful" mattress, let alone how they translate into ILDs.)

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Last edit: by jjramsey. Reason: Fixed my height; was off by an inch.

Bad start with new latex mattress 15 May 2015 17:30 #5

Hi jjramsey,

Also, last time, you said that the shoulder blade pain could indicate a hunched position, but I'm more hunched with the pillow partly tucked under my shoulders. Shoulder blade pain seems to happen the more straight my spine is.


As I mentioned I can only guess based on the information that I have available and without a reference point of a mattress that works well for you but IMO the odds would be higher that it's too soft than too firm.

As you can see in the "symptoms" post I linked ( post #2 here ) ... hunched could mean side to side where your shoulders are pushed forward while the center of your body sinks in more deeply (what I called slouched in the post) or it could be head to foot if your head is pushed forward by a pillow that is too thick (which I called hunched). In other words I would guess that it would be more of a posture and alignment issue than a pressure issue.

(FWIW, the specs of the "Elegance" and "Beautiful" mattresses indicate that they are not quite the same. Both are 12" thick, but the "Beautiful" purports to have two 3" inch comfort layers, each apparently with a different softness, over a 6" support, while the "Elegance" is supposed to have one 5" comfort layer over 6" of support over a 1" "stabilization base." I'm not sure how the old "Talalay SS" and "Talalay S" used to describe the layers of the "Elegance" mattress translate into whatever marketing terms that Pure Latex Bliss now uses for their "Beautiful" mattress, let alone how they translate into ILDs.)


I believe that these are old specs and that their specs are now the same as the Beautiful (you can see the current PLB specs listed here ). Either way though they are both very soft mattresses.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by Phoenix.

Bad start with new latex mattress 16 May 2015 07:51 #6

(FWIW, the specs of the "Elegance" and "Beautiful" mattresses indicate that they are not quite the same. Both are 12" thick, but the "Beautiful" purports to have two 3" inch comfort layers, each apparently with a different softness, over a 6" support, while the "Elegance" is supposed to have one 5" comfort layer over 6" of support over a 1" "stabilization base." I'm not sure how the old "Talalay SS" and "Talalay S" used to describe the layers of the "Elegance" mattress translate into whatever marketing terms that Pure Latex Bliss now uses for their "Beautiful" mattress, let alone how they translate into ILDs.)


Phoenix is correct - the Beautiful and the Elegance are the same mattress.
Jeff Scheuer, The Beducator™ Owner of Mattress To Go
Researching for a mattress?... read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
Click here for TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Trusted Members

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Bad start with new latex mattress 16 May 2015 08:48 #7

FWIW, I tried an experiment of sorts. I pulled out an air mattress that I had around, as in the kind one uses for guests, and tried to take a nap on it for a while inside a sleeping bag. My shoulder blades did feel increasingly compressed as time went on, though there wasn't as sharp a pain in my shoulder blades as with my new mattress, and some of the pain wandered to the sides of my shoulders. Not sure what that means, if anything.

Seems like there are two alternatives: either my new mattress is too soft, or my back has gotten so screwed up that it's easy to make it painful just by lying down, even if I lie down on a more or less reasonable surface..

[ETA: I also tried out a Casper mattress, and I get about the same upper back problems as I do with my la-dee-da latex mattress. That seems to confirm (1) that the problem is mostly at my end, and (2) that it's not as likely to do with my shoulders being somehow hunched, given that the Casper is more of a medium-firm sort of mattress.]

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Last edit: by jjramsey. Reason: Update on how things were going with my mattress.
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