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Trying to understand the problem 17 Sep 2020 13:50 #1

Hi mattress experts and enthusiasts! I recently bought my first ever bed in a box, sight-unseen mattress, an Allswell Luxe Hybrid. So far, it is not going particularly well. I have had it about three weeks, and have yet to have a night of sleep on it that I would describe truly as "comfortable". To be clear, I always lie down on it, feel that it is comfortable, fall right to sleep, sleep soundly through the night, but wake in the morning with pain/stiffness. Lower back usually. That's when I sleep on my back, which is my usual sleeping position. If I sleep on my side, same thing, but also numbness in the hip. This is all so strange to me because I am coming from an extremely firm, bargain basement Ikea HAUGESUND which I have had two of over the last five years. They are quite firm mattresses with almost no comfort layer to speak and wear out after two years each, but I never had any back pain or numbness sleeping on them, compared to the Allswell. On those mattresses, I liked to sleep on my back, with a mountain of pillows pushing me into an almost sitting position. I have tried to replicate that on the new mattress as well, with pain resulting. I have also tried just one small pillow, and pain results as well. I also slept fine on the old mattresses on my side with no numbness. Honestly, I would have gotten another one, but my girlfriend is a side sleeper, and wants something softer, and I want something that doesn't wear out every two years.

My body type is that of someone who (according to most on the internet -- maybe not necessarily true) would typically benefit from a softer mattress, and doesn't require any special support measures: I am 5 11' and 130 lbs. What I am trying to figure out now is how to diagnose the problem. If I move on from the Allswell, what should I look for in a replacement? Do I need a mattress that is softer? Firmer? More supportive? Thicker comfort layer? Thinner comfort layer? My current theory is that because I am light and tall, when I am on my back, my whole body is being supported by the comfort layer, which I sink into and it doesn't support my lumbar spine. And the support springs are quite firm, so when go on my side and I do sink in with my hip, I get the numbness. So what I need would be either a mattress with a firmer/thinner top layer, and a less firm support layer. Does that make sense? Are there any good way I can figure this out?

Two other miscellaneous points. I have just moved to a new place with lots of new things, so am doing lots of sitting all day at a new desk and new desk chair. Is there any good way to separate the origin of back pain from desk/chair from mattress? Second, my girlfriend has a casper original bought in 2019 and I had similar feelings to this when I moved in with her for about a month (morning lower back stiffness) in my first week sleeping on it. But less severe. And, after about a few weeks I got used to it and did not have pain, mostly by sleeping on my side. But I always felt like it was a little too soft for back sleeping and I slept more on my side than I usually did on the Ikea one.

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Last edit: by Grim Tuesday.

Trying to understand the problem 22 Sep 2020 15:17 #2

Hey Grim Tuesday,

Welcome to the TMU Forum :) ! Thanks for your question.

Hi mattress experts and enthusiasts! I recently bought my first ever bed in a box, sight-unseen mattress, an Allswell Luxe Hybrid. So far, it is not going particularly well. I have had it about three weeks, and have yet to have a night of sleep on it that I would describe truly as "comfortable". To be clear, I always lie down on it, feel that it is comfortable, fall right to sleep, sleep soundly through the night, but wake in the morning with pain/stiffness. Lower back usually. That's when I sleep on my back, which is my usual sleeping position. If I sleep on my side, same thing, but also numbness in the hip.

Sorry to hear of your frustrating experience with your recent BIB purchase, Grim Tuesday. To your point, it can be difficult to make a mattress purchase "sight- unseen," one of the reasons why many manufacturers offer 100 night sleep trials such as Allswell's policy, offering consumers assurance that comfort adjustments/ returns can be made easily. Good job on toughing it out through the first 30 nights as suggested, your body needs time to realign its' sleeping position, especially after the past 5 years spent on your two "bargain basement" mattresses ;) .

I liked to sleep on my back, with a mountain of pillows pushing me into an almost sitting position. I have tried to replicate that on the new mattress as well, with pain resulting. I have also tried just one small pillow, and pain results as well. I also slept fine on the old mattresses on my side with no numbness. Honestly, I would have gotten another one, but my girlfriend is a side sleeper, and wants something softer, and I want something that doesn't wear out every two years.


The Ikea HAUGESUND mattress that you've had (two of) the past five years uses poly foam construction in the comfort layer, while the Allswell Luxe Hybrid uses memory foam. You have well identified the reason for the "firmer" feel of the HAUGESUND, the poly foam 1.5 lb/cu.ft/ 1.7 lb/cu.ft comfort layers simply passed their useful life from a durability standpoint. As far as your past multiple pillow sleeping configuration, your body is likely still adapting to new sleep positions, also a likely source of the back pain and numbness you describe. Question for you: prior to your Allswell, have you slept on a memory foam mattress? Did you have a specific preference for choosing a hybrid with memory foam as a comfort layer? Phoenix's article, "An Overview of Memory Foam as a Mattress Comfort Layer" may offer insights to some of the differences you are experiencing in the two comfort materials.

I have just moved to a new place with lots of new things, so am doing lots of sitting all day at a new desk and new desk chair. Is there any good way to separate the origin of back pain from desk/chair from mattress?


There is a chance these changes in your daily routine of adjusting to a new desk/ desk chair configuration may play a role in other types of neck/ back pains temporarily. It may be worth documenting the times you notice these discomforts during the day and see where those "cause and effect" relationships may lie. Good luck and looking forward to hearing how you decide to move forward.

Thanks,
Sensei
Sensei(@ TMU Team)
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Trying to understand the problem 27 Sep 2020 12:03 #3

Thank you for your thoughts! I hadn't read Phoenix's article, it is very interesting and I think probably explains the situation well. We just don't really like memory foam, or at the very least we don't like this much memory foam right on top. I think I am experiencing the softening-and-hammocking that is described in the article. So what to do about it. Last week I bought two 2" latex toppers from Sleep On Latex, to see if hardening or softening the top layer, and changing the material of it might have an impact for us. I will report back on how those work., but in case they don't I think we should look for a BiB that doesn't use memory foam as the top layer. Are there any of those in the under-$1200-for-a-king price range?

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Trying to understand the problem 28 Sep 2020 07:38 #4

Hey Grim Tuesday,

Thanks for the update :) .

We just don't really like memory foam, or at the very least we don't like this much memory foam right on top. I think I am experiencing the softening-and-hammocking that is described in the article. So what to do about it. Last week I bought two 2" latex toppers from Sleep On Latex, to see if hardening or softening the top layer, and changing the material of it might have an impact for us. I will report back on how those work.


Congrats on your new topper purchase :) ! Appreciate your support of trusted member @SleepOnLatex , they will be helpful in guiding you through the correct comfort layering process and you should find latex more agreeable to your preferences.

in case they don't I think we should look for a BiB that doesn't use memory foam as the top layer. Are there any of those in the under-$1200-for-a-king price range?


Many of the trusted members offer BiBs with latex as the comfort layer, you may check them out in the TMU Trusted Member Directory . And as a Thank You to our consumer subscribers: any consumer asking at least one question (=You) may receive a small discount from participating trusted member manufacturers/ retailers when making a purchase from them.

Hoping this new direction helps you both get a better nights' sleep and looking forward to your updates ;) .

Thanks,
Sensei
Sensei(@ TMU Team)
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
Click here for TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Our Trusted Members.
For any mattress questions Ask An Expert on our forum

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

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