The Secret to Making a Soft Mattress Firmer

Jonathan Prichard

Jonathan Prichard

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You often hear about sleepers who wish that their mattress was softer. But a mattress that’s too soft is also an issue for some sleepers.

Whatever fuels your desire for a firmer mattress, it is not an issue you should take lightly. You spend a third of your life on your mattress, and trying to sleep on one that is sagging or just too soft can rob you of quality sleep — instead leading to pain.

The Best Way to Make a Soft Mattress Firmer

So, what can you do to fix a too-soft mattress and make it firmer? The obvious — and sometimes easiest — solution is to just get a new mattress.

While making a mattress softer is usually a relatively easy fix, making a mattress firmer can be a bit trickier, and usually requires the mattress to be completely disassembled.

As such, it may just be easier to simply buy a new one.

This is true for both newer and older mattresses. For newer ones, the mattress may be covered by a sleep trial, which will make replacing it with a firmer option relatively cheap and painless (more on this in the next section).

In order to increase your chances of finding the ideal mattress, it’s crucial to conduct research on the distinctions between plush and firm mattresses prior to making a purchase.

However, if you’ve had your mattress for a while, it may just be sagging due to wear.

While you can try to add firmness to a mattress such as this, you are really better off replacing it. Like everything else, mattresses will wear out over time!

Check the Sleep Trial and Warranty Policy

Many new mattresses sold today include a sleep trial, which allows you to try out the mattress for a period of time to make sure that it will meet your comfort needs long-term.

These trial periods can run anywhere from a few weeks up to a year, with 100 days being pretty standard. If during this period you find that the mattress is not working for you for whatever reason, you can send it back for a replacement or a refund, no questions asked!

As such, if you find that your new mattress just isn’t firm enough after sleeping on it for a couple of weeks or months, a sleep trial is an easy way to fix the problem.

Check the documentation that came with the mattress, or contact the seller to see if you are covered, as well as what steps you need to take to either swap out the mattress or get a refund.

Companies will often arrange to pick up your old mattress free of charge, arrange for a new mattress, or grant a refund if you donate your old one to a local charity.

Solidify Your Bed’s Foundation

Sometimes it’s not your mattress that’s the problem, but what it’s resting on.

A solid bed foundation — be it a box spring or a bed frame — is a key element in a comfortable bed. One that is worn out or even broken can be a big detriment to getting a good night’s sleep.

Check Your Box Springs

If you use a box spring with your mattress, check it carefully. The springs within can become worn out or even broken over time, which can greatly lessen their ability to support a mattress. This can lead to a mattress feeling softer than it really is.

To check a box spring, remove the mattress and press down on the springs to see how well they bounce back. If the springs feel too spongy or some of them are broken, replace the box spring — a much cheaper solution than replacing a complete mattress.

Add or Replace Plywood Boards or Slats

If you have a bed frame with wooden slats, be sure that they are in good shape and that none are missing.

The gaps between the slats should be no more than three inches; anything greater and the mattress could start to sink into the gaps, resulting in a less comfortable mattress. If the slats are in bad shape (cracked, warped), you can either replace them with new slats, or add a solid piece of plywood over them.

You should also make sure that the slats are solid wood (made from flat wood, such as pine) as opposed to sprung slats (made from a more flexible curved wood like beech), as the latter will make a mattress feel softer.

Buy a New Bed Frame

Much like a box spring, a bed frame can wear out or become damaged over time. If you suspect your bed frame isn’t providing you with the firmness and support you need, look into replacing it with a new frame.

Consider Replacing Old Foam Layers

If your mattress is made up of a variety of layers, another possible option is just to remove and replace some of the old, worn foam layers within it.

While you will probably be better off just replacing the entire mattress, if you have a mattress of this type and it includes a removable cover allowing easy access to the layers, this can still be a feasible option that will cost you less than replacing the entire mattress.

The Importance of Mattress Firmness (and Thickness)

A firmer mattress will provide you with more support than a softer one. Similarly, a thicker mattress will also tend to be more supportive than a thinner one.

There are a number of reasons why you might find a firmer mattress more comfortable. If you have a back injury or suffer from back pain — particularly in the lower back — a firmer mattress can help to keep your spine aligned, which can lead to less pain.

Stomach and back sleepers, as well as heavier sleepers, will also benefit from a firmer mattress, as they will sink into it less and have better spine alignment throughout the night.

Plus, some sleepers will just find a firmer mattress to be more comfortable, which will lead to a more restful sleep and less tossing and turning.

All these reasons can result in better health for the sleeper. But there is also a financial reward — firmer mattresses, particularly thicker ones, will tend to last longer.

This can save you a considerable amount of money over time.

Don’t Let a Sagging Mattress Ruin Your Sleep!

If a too-soft mattress is robbing you of sleep, you don’t need to stand for it!

While increasing firmness to a mattress can be a more difficult task than making one softer, there are still some options available to you that can both firm up your mattress and improve your overall sleep and health.

Sometimes though, the easiest solution for a problem of this type may just be to give in and replace the mattress entirely.

If you’re looking for a quality mattress to replace your older one that’s become far too soft for comfort — and that matches your sleep preferences — be sure to browse through our collection!

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