The truth is that mattress firmness ratings are relatively easy to understand once you break them down. The staffs at mattress stores are happy to explain exactly what you need to know.
Firmness is Subjective
For a start, firmness isn’t something that can be precisely measured. The firmness of a mattress is somewhat subjective, and will depend on individual factors.
Someone who weighs a hundred pounds may find a particular mattress to be firmer than someone who weighs 300 pounds. Obviously, the more weight applied to the mattress, the more the entire structure will bend and flex.
You may also find mattresses on the sales floor that are softer or firmer than those you’ve experienced in the past, especially if you haven’t owned a wide variety of mattresses. For example, if you were unknowingly buying soft mattresses your entire life, anything approaching firm can seem extremely firm to you.
The Firmness Scale
Firmness is generally rated on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the most firm. Soft mattresses tend to be rated between 3 and 5, and will flex approximately 1.5-3 inches. Medium mattresses are rated between 5 and 7. They sink between 1-2 inches when you lie on them.
Finally, firm mattresses range from 7.5 to 9. These mattresses will hardly sink or hug the body at all, effectively leaving the sleeper to float on top of the mattress itself.
So, What Mattress Do You Need?
Most people tend to prefer a medium level of firmness for their mattress, as it hugs the body while not sinking to an extreme level. However, some people may suffer conditions which require them to sleep on a particular degree of firmness for health reasons. For example, those suffering chronic back pain tend to fare better on firmer mattresses, while side sleepers need something softer to cushion their shoulders and hips.
If you need help deciding which level of firmness you need for your mattress, contact a reliable mattress store to see their selection and choose something that suits your needs.
Mattress Firmness Guide and Comparison, SleepLikeTheDead.com
The Best Mattresses for Chronic Back Pain, Mattress-Guides.net