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What is the best mattress thickness for exceptional sleep?

Finding the ideal mattress thickness is crucial for quality sleep

thick mattress on a bed frame in the bedroom
Photo by Max Vakhtbovych from Pexels

Mattress thickness is something that you may be overlooked when shopping for a mattress, but it can play a vital role in overall sleep quality. The thickness of the mattress you want to buy is important because if you select a bed with the wrong mattress depth, it could have the same effects as buying a mattress that is too soft or too firm. The last thing you want is to be stuck with a mattress that could be slowly impacting your overall health in a negative way. So, you need to know what mattress thickness is best for you and your partner. We put together a mattress depth guide to help you determine what is the best mattress thickness for you.

People come in all shapes and sizes, and so do their beds. We’ve discussed mattresses that have the best pricing, mattresses that are good for certain types of sleepers, and the best cooling mattresses that wick away heat and moisture.

You already know what level of firmness you want, and you already know whether you want a memory foam mattress, a hybrid mattress, or an innerspring mattress. Before you make your purchase, you should know what thickness is too thin for you, what a thick mattress consists of, and how thick a mattress should be.

How thick should a mattress be?

A couple sleep in the WinkBeds GravityLux mattress.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

If you have been wondering how thick should your mattress be, then take a look at this mattress thickness guide:

  • 5 to 9-inch mattress: Perfect for smaller single individuals and children.
  • 10 to 12-inch mattress: Perfect for average-sized sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds.
  • 12 to 14-inch mattress: Perfect for sleepers 230 pounds or more.

Is a thicker mattress better?

A family of three people reading on a DreamCloud mattress.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Thick mattresses with a thick base layer are much more supportive than thin mattresses. If you are sharing your bed with a partner, you need a thicker mattress because of the added pressure placed on the mattress. Don’t worry, though, weight is calculated per side, so you only need to find a mattress that will support each person’s body weight. Keep in mind that if you are using a box spring, they also have weight capacities, and that should be taken into consideration as well.

No matter what thickness you go with, it needs to be comfortable for you. You also need to consider the depth of the bed. The recommended bed height is 25 inches, and that applies whether or not you use a box spring or a platform bed. Anything over 25 inches can be difficult to get in and out of if you have back, hip, or any other kind of joint pain or if you have limited mobility.

Platform beds can often be too low, but if you use a box spring, it can sit at the right level that won’t cause discomfort. Higher-level beds can cause injury if you have to jump up or down. Find a good quality bed frame that will work with the mattress you choose.

Is an 8-inch mattress too thin?

Woman sleeping on latex mattress.
Eco Terra Beds

On average, an 8-inch mattress may not give you enough neck, hip, and back support. If you happen to be a smaller-weight single sleeper, it could be adequate, but typically, low-profile mattresses or a thin mattress won’t provide much in the way of comfort layers. These mattresses do tend to be easier to move due to their lightweight profile.

A mattress between 5 and 8 inches is perfect for children, back sleepers, or individuals with limited mobility affecting their ability to get in and out of bed. If you are a side sleeper then you will find 8-inch mattresses won’t give you the support to relieve your pressure points and may cause neck, hip, or back pain.

What is considered a thick mattress?

thick mattress with no blankets on a bed
Photo by Max Vakhtbovych from Pexels

Any mattress that has a thickness between 8 and 12 inches is technically considered a thick mattress. When discussing different mattress thicknesses, the factor is usually referred to as height, and mattresses thicker than 16 inches are called extra deep or extra tall mattresses. The thickness of each mattress will affect comfort because if the mattress is too thin it can impact your health. Whether or not a mattress is good overall depends on the quality of the material, the different sleeping positions, and the preferences of the individual or couple.

Thicker mattresses are not always better. The extra-thick mattress can cause just as many health and back issues as a mattress that is too thin. You need to determine if a 10-inch thick mattress will be better than a mattress that is 12 inches thick.

The other determining factor is the type of bed you want. Memory foam, gel memory foam, and latex mattresses are all going to vary in comfort level as well as thickness. You will need to conduct a mattress review to verify if your selection will be a good fit for the sleeping needs of you and your partner.

Restful sleep awaits you

Tuft and Needle Original King Mattress in a room.
Tuft & Needle

Now that you know what the perfect thickness of the mattress you need, you can start to get the most out of your sleep each night. And remember, it’s never a bad idea to invest in additional sleep support to get your most restful night’s sleep.

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Nate Swanner
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Nate is General Manager for all not-Digital-Trends properties at DTMG, including The Manual, Digital Trends en Espanol…
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