Is Your Mattress Too Soft? Here’s How to Find Out – The Bedding Planet

Is Your Mattress Too Soft? Here’s How to Find Out

The first thing we want our mattress to be is comfortable.

When we talk of comfort, we mean how firm or soft a mattress feels and how much support we get from it. A mattress can go from being too hard to too firm and vice versa.

In this post we will discuss the soft part of the firmness spectrum. A lot of people complain that their mattress is to soft. Sure it felt good when they first got it, but now the softness is ruining their sleep.

But, what are the signs of a mattress that is too soft? How can I tell? You can tell that your mattress is too soft if you wake up with lower back pain, overall muscle and joint stiffness, if you feel like you’re “bottoming out” when you lay down on your bed, and if you have a hard time getting out of your bed.

Read on to learn more about the signs of sleeping on a mattress that are too soft, and also how to make the mattress harder if needed.

5 Signs Telling You Your Mattress May be Too Soft

Before we get to the signs, I must say that the following signs may also be because your mattress is too firm. You see, both a mattress that is too soft and one that is too firm will cause many of the same symptoms. If you think that your mattress is too firm, check out this post.

Sign 1: If you experience a stiff and sore lower back

A tight and aching lower back is the most prevalent symptom of an overly soft bed. This typically occurs first thing in the morning, after you’ve been in bed for a long time.

While there are many reasons for a sore lower back, recurring morning aches and pains are usually a sign that your bed is the source of your discomfort.

Sign 2: If you find it hard to get comfortable

Tossing and turning are regular occurrences; stress, anxiety, and even bad health can all contribute to insomnia.

However, the length of time it takes to get comfortable at night is greatly influenced by your mattress. If you’re continually shifting your position, it could be an indication that your muscles aren’t able to rest completely. A symptom telling you that your mattress is too soft.

Sign 3: If you wake with neck or shoulder pain after sleeping on your stomach

Stomach sleepers should be extra careful with the firmness of their mattress. Sleeping on your stomach puts extra strain on your neck, jaw, and upper back due to the unnatural twisting required in that position.

If you still experience shoulder and neck pain even after sleeping on your stomach using the right type of pillow, that is a clear indication that your hips are sinking too deep into the mattress, and the solution is to get a firmer mattress.

Sign 4: If you find it hard to get in and out of bed

Are you finding it difficult to get in and out of your bed? If you find yourself “stuck” in your bed and find it hard getting up and off the mattress, your mattress may be too soft.

Though memory foam and other highly conformable materials might add to the problem, feeling “stuck” in a hybrid mattress or with latex or latex-alternative foam indicates that firmness is absent.

Sign 5: You feel like you’re “bottoming out” when you hop into bed

A good mattress should have three layers, including a top comfort layer, a middle transitional layer, and a bottom support layer.

The comfort and transitional layers are made to adapt to your body’s curves and provide comfort. If you sink to the lowest support layers, your mattress is either excessively soft or old.

As you can see in the image below, the mattress is too soft making her hips sink down too much into the mattress. This is a common reason for back and hip pain.

How to Fix a Mattress That is Too Soft

Step 1: Replace with a firmer mattress

Before looking into alternative possibilities, examine if your mattress comes with a sleep trial and, if so, whether it is still valid.

Many mattress sellers allow you to change from a softer to a firmer mattress if you find that you prefer a firmer choice after sleeping on it.

Step 2: Use a mattress topper

Investing in a mattress topper is a great solution. A mattress topper sits on top of your mattress to offer extra comfort, support, and firmness.

Mattress toppers are found in a range of firmness levels and fillings, and they enhance the feel of your mattress.

Our firm mattress topper top pick: PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper – Extra Firm

Step 3: Put plywood between the bed frame and the mattress

Adding plywood or an MDF sheet below your mattress is one of the most popular ways to make a mattress firmer.

Since the surface is solid and even, it will feel more supportive and help slow down the dipping and sagging of the mattress.

Step 4: Replace the divan base

Your mattress will not feel as firm on a sprung divan basis as on a solid platform divan base. This is because the base and your mattress move together while you sleep.

If you want to make your mattress firmer, switching to a platform divan base will do it immediately.

Step 5: Buy a new bed frame or slats

Your bed frame’s slats may have become weaker, misplaced, or damaged. If that is the case, the uneven surface will impact the firmness of your mattress; replacing your bed frame or slats will solve this problem.

A new bed frame with new slats will provide more support. Go for bed frames with sturdy slats to make your mattress firmer. They create a more supportive feel.

Step 6: Rotate your mattress regularly

Turning your mattress is necessary to ensure that the fillings are well distributed. It helps keep your mattress firmer for longer and maintains it in good shape.

Check the care booklet to see if it has to be flipped or rotated and how often.

Step 7: Keep your bedding flat

Pulling your bedding tight to the corners of your mattress is an excellent technique to make your mattress feel firmer.

Because the mattress is under more pressure, it feels more supportive. Pull the sheets tight across your mattress to ensure it remains firm every morning.

Changing your linens on a regular basis keeps your mattress smelling good.

Step 8: Air the mattress out

Moisture in the air might cause your mattress to become damp, hence softening it. This is particularly common if you live near the ocean or your bedroom becomes humid.

Remove the bedding from your mattress, open the windows, and let it air out for some time. This will assist in keeping the mattress free from becoming too soft.

Step 9: Alter your room temperature


High temperatures can harm some mattress types, especially foam. Warmer temperatures make the fillings softer, so you won’t get enough support. Therefore, maintain a cold environment in your bedroom to keep your mattress firm.

Step 10: If all the options fail – buy a new mattress

However, if your mattress is old and worn down, these treatments will not improve long-term, making them ineffective. Investing in a new, firmer mattress would be a better alternative.

To guarantee that you get the finest night’s sleep possible, you should change your mattress every seven years. However, if the surface is bumpy and sinking in places, it may be time to consider acquiring a firmer mattress sooner rather than later.

Can a Mattress Topper Help Make The Bed Firmer?

As explained earlier, if you’re having trouble sleeping because of your soft mattress, using a mattress topper is a great way to make it firmer.

Mattress toppers come in a variety of materials, including hard foam and memory foam. A memory foam mattress topper comes in a variety of hardnesses, allowing you to choose long-lasting firmness for your bed.

Again, we recommend the PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper. Make sure you choose the “extra firm” firmness if your current mattress is very soft.

Niklas Lampi

My name is Niklas and I'm the author and content operator at The Bedding Planet. I've always had a big interest in bedding and more specifically sleep. If I find something that makes me sleep better, whether that's a lifestyle change or a better bedding environment, I'm ready to share it with the world!

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