You do all the right things. You practice good sleep habits (you might have even taken our sleep quiz), you follow all the right sleep tips like healthy eating, exercise, meditating and waking up the first time your alarm goes off.
But, you somehow still feel terrible when you wake up and you can’t figure out why.
Your mattress might be the problem.
We get it: mattresses are expensive. However, investing in a new mattress can not only help you get a better night’s sleep, but it might also be the solution to a whole host of problems related to sleep deprivation or a poor quality of sleep (things like weight gain and memory retention).
That being said, you shouldn’t gauge mattress replacement by your bed’s warranty, because as a rule, you should replace your mattress every seven or eight years (every five to seven if you’re over 40 years old) and many warranties exceed 10 years. Between your body and your bed, the signs that you need to replace your mattress are there, you just have to know where to look:
You sleep better somewhere (or everywhere) else but your bed
Are you tossing and turning at night? Waking up and relocating to another bedroom or maybe the recliner in your living room? Whether you’re finding you get a better night’s sleep on the couch, in a hotel, or at a friend’s place, choosing somewhere else to sleep in the middle of the night, and having ruled out a sleeping disorder, such as sleep apnea as the cause, is a surefire sign that your mattress isn’t working for you anymore.
You wake up stiff or in pain
Are you starting your mornings with moaning and groaning about stiffness and pain (usually in your upper or lower back, neck and joints)? Does the discomfort ease up with stretching and movement? Your mattress may not be giving your body the support it needs. Even if your mattress isn’t old, if you’ve gained or lost a significant amount of weight (or are/have been pregnant), the mattress you have might not be providing the right support you need anymore.
You don’t feel rested
Are you regularly waking up groggy and sluggish, even when you’ve had eight hours of sleep? Are your sheets tangled from tossing and turning throughout the night? When your sleep surface isn’t comfortable, you will wake up repeatedly, flipping over and readjusting to try to get cozy enough to sleep. You might only need to rotate or flip your mattress, but it also might be time for a new one.
You’re stuffed up in the mornings, or sneezing all night
Do you wake up congested? Do you sneeze a lot during the night? Are you sticking to strict bedding wash and change regimen and still finding yourself congested? If so, your bed might be a haven for household allergens – especially if your bed doesn’t have a good mattress protector. Between bodies, dust, pets, and other environmental causes, beds inevitably attract allergens. If you’ve tried everything from new pillows and bedding to humidifiers and nothing’s changing, your bed might be the problem.
Your mattress is showing signs of wear and tear
Squeaks. Lumps. Sags. Tears. Stains. Holes. Foul smells. Each of these issues can lead to poor quality of sleep, so if your mattress has any of these problems, it’s likely time for a new one.
When choosing a new mattress, don’t head straight for the ones with the most hype. Instead, take your time, do your research, and find a mattress that works for you. Consider your budget, the size, and your health concerns (arthritis, back pain, allergies, sleep disorders), ask questions, and take the Better Sleep Council’s Better Bed Quiz.
Once you’re armed with knowledge, get out there and try some beds. Take your pillow and lie on each bed for at least 15 minutes in your favoured sleep position. Make sure you test out other positions too. Plus, most mattress shops offer money back guarantees so you can try out a bed for 30 days and if it doesn’t work for you, you can return it and try another one!
If you’ve got a new mattress but still aren’t sleeping well at night, you might suffer from a sleep disorder like sleep apnea. Take our quiz to learn more today.