If you suffer from sciatica, you know the pain that comes along with the condition can make sleeping comfortably quite the challenge. Since your sciatic nerve runs along the lower back, through the hips and the buttocks, all the way to the calves, when it becomes irritated the pain is no joke.
So, how in the world are you supposed to sleep with pulsing pains shooting up your hips and legs? Aside from seeking the advice and treatment of a medical professional, one thing you can do is buy a new mattress. And not just any ol’ mattress, but one that lifts your spine into a neutral alignment all the way from your shoulders to your hips.
For people that suffer from sciatica, you know it’s more specific than general back pain, which we cover in our Best Mattress for Back Pain list, so I thought I’d get you started on your journey by introducing you to some of the best mattresses specifically for lower back pain on the market. Though they differ in terms of construction, firmness, and price, they’re all designed to alleviate tension at the lower back for a cozy, pain-free sleep.
Best Mattresses for Sciatica 2020
- Best Hybrid Mattress for Sciatica – Helix Luxe
- Best for Pressure Relief – Saatva
- Best Foam Mattress For Sciatica – Leesa
- Best Memory Foam Mattress – Bear
- Best Mattress for Couples – Brooklyn Bedding Signature
- Best Mattress in a Box for Sciatica – Purple Hybrid
- Best Latex Mattress – Idle Sleep Latex Hybrid
- Best Mattress for Hot Sleepers – Amerisleep Hybrid
- Best Mattress for Side Sleepers – GhostBed Flex
- Best Mattress for Leg Pain – Tuft & Needle
Disclaimer: The content on Sleepopolis is meant to be informative, but shouldn’t replace advice or treatment from a medical professional. If you experience chronic pain or discomfort while sleeping, it’s best to consult a healthcare professional.
Why I Picked These Mattresses
Best Hybrid Mattress for Sciatica
If your biggest issue is hip pain, you may want to give Helix a try. This brand sells a ton of different mattresses, which are divided into two collections: the Standard and Luxe lines. While both are great, I think the Luxe beds could be especially good for hip pain sufferers because they offer just a touch more pressure relief than their Standard siblings.
Though there are technically six slightly different mattresses in the Luxe line (from the firm Dawn to the ultra-soft Sunset), they all feature gentle pillow tops over layers of foam and pocketed coils. This creates a balanced vibe that lifts the hips in alignment with the shoulders and alleviates tension at the lower back. With six models to choose from, sleepers of all styles and preferences are sure to find a bed that meets their unique slumber needs.
For more on the Helix Luxe Line, check out my full Helix Luxe mattress review.
Whether you choose the standard or luxe edition, Helix mattresses have something to offer every style of sleeper!
Best for Pressure Relief
On the prowl for a traditional innerspring mattress? Then you better take a look at the Saatva. This bed features a coil-on-coil construction that brings a ton of bounce, support, and firmness to the table.
My favorite thing about the Saatva mattress is how well it supports a neutral spinal alignment, which is key to alleviating tension at the lumbar region. I also like that the bed comes in three different firmnesses, allowing sleepers to optimize their purchase to meet their personal comfort needs. Additionally, the Saatva has fantastic edge support, which means it could be a solid pick for couples as the feel is consistent all the way from the center to the sides of the bed. All in all, a nice choice for sleepers after a traditional, innerspring feel!
Read all about it at my full Saatva mattress review.
The Saatva mattress combines a luxurious pillow-top layer with two sections of coils for that classic innerspring feel.
Best Foam Mattress For Sciatica
Folks looking to soothe lower back pain with the cushiony goodness of an all-foam bed should definitely consider the Leesa mattress. Built with three layers of responsive LSA foam, plush memory foam, and sturdy high-density poly foam, this bed offers up a balanced design of pressure relief and support.
This vibe could work especially well for those with lower back pain because it alleviates tension in the lumbar region while simultaneously lifting the hips into a better alignment with the shoulders. I should also mention that the bed is surprisingly bouncy for an all-foam mattress, which makes it easy to move around and change positions in the night. This could benefit folks who like to shift their weight to avoid aches and pains while they sleep.
Does this mattress sound like the one for you? Then get all the details at my full Leesa mattress review.
Made from a blend of proprietary foam, memory foam, and high-density poly foam, the Leesa Mattress offers a softly balanced feel that's great for a wide range of sleepers.
Best Memory Foam
Memory foam is extremely popular in bedding because it allows people to sink deep into bed and is great at relieving pressure on the joints. One drawback though is that if a mattress uses a lot of memory foam, people might sink too far into the mattress, throwing off spinal alignment and possibly aggravating sciatica and lower back pain. The Bear uses graphite infused memory foam as a comfort layer, but still offers firm support to defend against lower back pain.
Because of this firmer feel, I really like the Bear mattress for back sleepers. Something else great about the Bear is that it provides a memory foam feel, but the graphite infusion helps defend against the heat trap that memory foam can be known for. So if you’re looking for a memory foam mattress that helps with both back pain and sleeps cool, take a look at the Bear.
Read our Bear mattress review to learn more!
The cover of the Bear mattress uses celliant, which some studies suggest may help those with active lifestyles recover faster!
Best Mattress for Couples with Back Pain
Brooklyn Bedding Signature
The three factors that I find to be most important when looking for a mattress for couples are firmness, motion isolation, and edge support. I like to recommend a mattress with a medium firm support level, so couples that like to sleep in different positions can find a nice compromise on feel. You’ll also want to make sure that the mattress does a good job isolating motion transfer so that restless sleepers won’t wake up the other person in bed when they start rolling around. Finally, edge support allows people to sleep near the end of the bed, providing more surface area to sleep on, and making the bed feel a little bigger.
The Brooklyn Bedding Signature mattress checks all of the boxes when it comes to attributes that makes a mattress great for couples. Along with that I think it’s just generally a good mattress for back and side combination sleepers. If you and your partner struggle with sciatica or lower back pain are looking for a new mattress, start your search with the Brooklyn Signature.
Read our Brooklyn Bedding Signature review for more information.
Resilient, latex-like foam offers sleepers of all styles great, pressure-relieving support! Enjoy 20% off your order with code SLEEPOPOLIS20!
Best Mattress in a Box for Sciatica
If cooling is a major concern for you, I’d suggest checking out the Purple mattress. Billed as being “temperature neutral,” this mattress is designed to absorb and dissipate body heat with ease, creating a sleep environment that’s cool and breathable.
The secret here is the brand’s proprietary Purple Grid™, which is found in the comfort layers of all Purple mattresses. This grid is made up of dozens of hyper-elastic polymer squares, whose open structure promotes airflow and collapsible body-contouring. Lower back pain sufferers who tend to overheat at night should be well-satisfied by this combination of pressure relief and breathability. Plus, the structure is quite bouncy, so could be a good fit for combo sleepers who need to move around and change positions as they snooze.
Learn more about the Purple at my full Purple mattress review.
The combination of Hyper-Elastic Polymer and pocketed coils makes the Purple Hybrid a great option for those looking for bounce and pressure relief!
Best Latex Mattress
Idle Sleep Latex Hybrid
If you’ve never slept on a latex mattress before then you may not be aware of some of the great benefits of latex beds. Latex is a material that allows people to sink in for comfort, but has a quick response to pressure so you won’t feel stuck in bed when trying to change positions. Along with that, latex does a great job of dissipating body heat, so tends to sleep cooler than polyurethane based foams.
The Idle Sleep Latex Hybrid uses a latex comfort layer supported by pocketed coils for a medium firm feel that will help with back pain for people that sleep in a wide array of positions. Along with that, the combination of latex foam and pocketed coils allows people to feel more on top of the bed, and able to change positions really easily.
Last but not least, latex is a super durable material that tends to last longer than poly foams. The Idle Sleep Latex Hybrid doubles down on durability with its flippable design, which means you can flip the mattress every six months to defend against possible sagging from sleeping in the same spot on the mattress every night. So if you’re looking for a latex mattress to help with sciatica pain, the Idle Sleep Latex Hybrid should be first on the list.
Take a look at our Idle Sleep Latex Hybrid mattress review for our full breakdown.
The Idle Sleep mattress is not only constructed with bouncy latex, but is also totally flippable.
Best Mattress for Hot Sleepers
Amerisleep AS3 Hybrid
Hybrid mattresses can be great for those who struggle with lower back pain as they combine foam layers with coils for a one-two punch of pressure relief and support. And while there are many hybrid models to explore on the Internet, one of my favorites happens to be the Amerisleep AS3 Hybrid mattress.
What I like about this bed (especially for those who struggle with sciatica and lower back pain) is that it features a top layer of memory foam over pocketed coils. Memory foam has a slow response to pressure, so is able to contour to the curves of the body as you sink into the bed. This helps to alleviate tension at sensitive spots like the shoulders, hips, and lower back, which could be awesome for those with lower back pain. But the nice thing about the hybrid design here is that the pocketed coils help to curb some of this sinkage, bringing a touch of firm support to the structure to stabilize — and neutralize — the spine.
For more information, head on over to my main Amerisleep mattress hub.
Best Mattress for Side Sleepers with Lower Back Pain
The most common complaint that I hear from side sleepers looking for a new mattress is that their shoulders hurt from sleep on a mattress that’s too firm for them. I generally recommend softer mattresses to side sleepers to make sure they’re able to get the relief at joints like the shoulders and hips that they need. If a person is a side sleeper that suffers from lower back pain though, a softer mattress could also mean their spine won’t be in proper alignment.
The GhostBed Flex is a hybrid mattress with soft comfort foams for pressure relief, and pocketed coils for support. That combination of sinking into the mattress with coil support allows people to sleep comfortably on their side while avoiding bother shoulder and lower back pain. Finally, I was also really impressed with how cool the Flex slept, so it could be a good choice if you tend to overheat during the night as well.
Read the full GhostBed Flex review for our full testing results.
The GhostBed Flex uses a combination of soft memory foam and bouncy coils to provide nice pressure relief with the worry of feeling stuck in the mattress. The GhostBed Flex also uses great materials to help you sleep cool throughout the night.
Tuft & Needle
Best Mattress for Leg Pain
Thankfully, you don’t have to spend a fortune to find a mattress that’ll help alleviate lower back pain. Take the Tuft & Needle, for example, which features a supportive, no-frills design at a price that won’t break the bank.
But affordability isn’t the only thing the Tuft & Needle mattress has going for it! This all-foam bed has a satisfyingly firm feel, which works to lift the hips in line with the shoulders. In fact, it’s one of very few foam options I’d recommend for stomach and back sleepers, so could be a great fit for folks who like foam, but need more support than the material typically provides. I also found that the bed slept surprisingly cool, making it a nice option for hot sleepers.
Interested? Then hop on over to my full Tuft & Needle mattress review.
The Tuft & Needle mattress offers sleepers a medium-firm feel, and that floating-on-foam experience! Save 20% from Nov 26 - 29 during Tuft & Needle's Black Friday sale!
What is Sciatica?
Before we dive into my picks, let’s chat a bit about sciatica. For those unfamiliar with the term, it basically refers to any pain that radiates along the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back down either one or both legs. Oftentimes, it’s caused by a herniated disk or bone spur pressing against the nerve, activating a pain response from the body.
If you’ve never experienced the pain before, it kind of feels like a tingling numbness that can range in intensity from mild to excruciating. Though uncomfortable, it is treatable, either by medical consult, stretching, or the simple passage of time. One way to mitigate sciatic irritation is to invest in a highly supportive mattress, which lifts the hips in alignment with the shoulders and provides uniform pressure relief across the body. So, let’s take a peek at some beds that do just that!
What type of mattress is best for sciatica?
Folks with sciatica will want a medium firm mattress that offers a mix of comfort and support. They’ll also want a little bounce to make sure they can easily change positions to avoid pressure point formation.
Can sciatica be caused by a bad mattress?
While a mattress won’t technically “cause” sciatica, an old or sagging bed can definitely make the symptoms worse. If you feel as though your mattress is no longer supporting your shoulders, hips, or lower back, it may be time to buy a new bed.
How do I know if my mattress is causing me back pain?
The most important thing to figure out is whether or not your mattress is supporting you in your preferred sleeping position. A lack of support can lead to misalignment of the spine, resulting in lower back pain. So, side sleepers need to make sure they’ve got space to sink in at the shoulders, back and stomach sleepers need extra lift at the hips, and combo sleepers need a buoyant bed that’ll support ease of motion. If your bed doesn’t satisfy these needs, it may cause back pain.
Well folks, that does it for my guide to the best mattresses for lower back pain! When looking for one of your own, make sure to keep a firm eye trained on support, firmness, and mobility to ensure comfort and range of motion while you snooze.
Summary: The Best Mattresses for Sciatica
|Mattress||Best For||Price (Queen)||Coupon||Review|
|Helix Luxe||Hybrid||Varies||Helix Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Saatva||Pressure Relief||$1,399||Saatva Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Leesa||Foam||$899||Leesa Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Bear||Memory Foam||$800||Bear Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Brooklyn Bedding Signature||Couples||$999||Brooklyn Bedding Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Purple Hybrid||Bed in a Box||$1,699||Purple Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Idle Latex Hybrid||Latex||$1,899||IdleCoupon||Read Our Review!|
|Amerisleep||Hot Sleepers||$1,499||Amerisleep Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Ghostbed Flex||Side Sleepers||$1,845||Ghostbed Coupon||Read Our Review!|
|Tuft & Needle||Leg Pain||$595||Tuft & Needle Coupon||Read Our Review!|