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 2021
- 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
Helix sells a lot of different hybrid mattresses, and has a standard line and luxe line for each model. I think the Luxe line is the way to go for sciatica sufferers because it has a pillow top layer over its memory foam, which offers a plush feel and added pressure relief. The Dusk is a smart choice for back pain, since it’s in that medium firmness range that works for a lot of different sleepers, from side sleepers to stomach sleepers. I also think hybrid mattresses can be helpful for lower back pain because they offer the springy support that helps keep your spine in a straight line.
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
The Saatva is built with a coil-on-coil construction, meaning it has two layers of coils: a layer of larger steel coils below and a layer of smaller, individually wrapped coils above. These individually wrapped coils move with your body, helping to provide pressure relief where you need it. It also includes a layer of memory foam between its coil layers to offer extra relief at the lower back.
Overall, I’d say the Saatva is quite a bouncy mattress, with a nice amount of firm support. I think it works well if you like to switch positions throughout the night, since you’ll definitely feel more on top of this mattress than in it.
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 poly 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.
Does this mattress sound like the one for you? Then get all the details in my full Leesa mattress review.
- Great for Back Sleepers
- Sleeps Cool
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 you suffer from sciatica or lower back pain, the last thing you want to do is lug a big clunky mattress into your bedroom. Mattresses in a box come compressed in an easy to transport box, and you can let them expand in the comfort of your own bedroom.
The Purple is also great for hot sleepers, thanks to its gel grid layer, which sleeps cooler than foam, and its layer of pocketed coils will allow for more airflow through the mattress. Additionally, the gel grid offers some nice pressure relief at the hips and shoulders, while the pocketed coils give some responsiveness and support.
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
Amerisleep comes in a range of firmness options, from the super firm AS1 to the ultra plush AS5. I’d recommend the AS3 in particular for those with back pain because it’s a medium firm mattress that works for an array for sleeping positions. Overall, I’d say super plush mattresses aren’t a good choice for those with back pain, since sinking to fair in will throw their spines out of alignment.
The Amerisleep is great for hot sleepers because its comfort layer is made with Bio-Pur® foam, the brand’s proprietary foam that’s built to give the pressure relief and sinkage of memory foam, but without the heat trapping tendencies.
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. But side sleepers that suffer from lower back pain might need a firmer mattress to keep their spines in proper alignment.
The GhostBed Flex is a hybrid mattress with soft comfort foams for pressure relief, and pocketed coils for support. Sinking into the mattress with firm coil support allows people to sleep comfortably on their side while avoiding shoulder and lower back pain. 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
The Tuft & Needle is an all-foam mattress that’s great for both lower back pain and leg pain. Built with just two layers of foam, the Tuft & Needle offers both pressure relief and support. Its comfort layer is made of the brand’s proprietary adaptive foam, which is more responsive than memory foam, but still offers some nice sinkage and contouring. Below the comfort layer is a layer of high density poly foam, which helps keep sleepers spines supported and in a neutral position. Finally, the Tuft & Needle is a really affordable mattress, so anyone on a budget who is also suffering from leg pain should take note.
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! Use coupon code SLEEPOPOLIS15 to save 15% on Tuft & Needle Mattresses!
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!|
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