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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 05 Aug 2013 12:12 #1

  • Ez1
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Howdy there Phoenix -

Perhaps you can advise me how to correct my recent mattress mistake ... I have definitely taken a wrong turn and hoping for some help to get back on track. Just to review - I'm a curvy, moderately heavy side sleeper. I decided to make the move to latex, but really was looking for a budget way to do so. I ended up purchasing and EcoSleep mattress with a 33 ILD foam base and 2 - 1" 24 ILD comfort layers - thinking that was enough firmness in the support layer and a bit of extra compensation for my weight in the comfort layer.

From the outset, the mattress felt a bit too firm but more than that - a bit too bouncy (I was transitioning from sleeping on a futon with a memory foam topper that had lost its shape). To offset the bounciness, I added a memory foam topper - not a cheap one, but rather a 4 lb gel foam topper from a recommended provider. Well - the bounciness was solved, for sure. The bed is very comfortable when I am laying there on my back or sitting around in it. When I turn on my side though, I really don't get the feeling that I'm sinking into the memory foam rather sort of floating around on it and in the morning, I have nasty pain in my shoulder and hip on the side where I was laying - and I definitely need to solve this ....

I did try removing the 3" new topper (thinking maybe it is too thick) and threw back on the cheapo topper 1.5" foam I previously used on the futon. While this did help somewhat, I'm certainly not getting the good night's sleep I had hoped for and the pressure points continue to smart.

Any advice on how to back out of the dead end in which I've placed myself? Ought I deep six the mattress and start again? Or maybe there is something I have overlooked here. I am still within the time period to exchange the mattress, but hesitate to pay the processing fees etc. without knowing which direction might provide relief. I don't want to go through all the hassle of an exchange only to be in the same situation in a couple of months.

Any insights you might have to offer would be greatly appreciated.
Ez

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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 05 Aug 2013 14:31 #2

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Hi EZ1,

When you are experiencing hip or shoulder pain when you sleep on your side then the odds are highest that you need to sink into some extra thickness and/or softness in the comfort layers to help shield you from the firmness of the support layers.

The quality of the materials in your mattress appear to be good (I'm guessing that the base layer is suitable density polyfoam) so I would tend to avoid replacing it and focus more on fine tuning in terms of PPP if that's possible.

Memory foam can be somewhat tricky because it not only reacts to pressure but also to heat, humidity, and the length of time it is compressed. If your bedroom is cold it can make memory foam firmer.

It's also possible that your mattress protector, any mattress pad, or even your sheets can interfere with the response of the memory foam. What type of mattress protector do you have.

The memory foam topper will also soften up a bit in the initial first few weeks of use so this may also be part of the problem because "in theory" 2" of 24 ILD latex and an additional 3" of memory foam would enough to relieve pressure points for most people. Walking on the topper carefully and evenly over the course of a week or so may help it go through it's initial softening period a little more quickly.

Based on your comments it appears that something is preventing you from sinking in to the memory foam so the first place I would check is what you have on top of it.

Phoenix
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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 06 Aug 2013 13:25 #3

  • Ez1
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Thanks so much Phoenix -
I understand what you are saying. Currently I have a mulberry silk mattress pad that is covering the memory foam. I will try removing it and report back on how that works. Also, I will "take a walk" over the topper and see if that helps.
As ever - many thanks for your help and guidance! I appreciate all your hard work.
Ez

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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 06 Aug 2013 17:41 #4

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Hi EZ1,

I understand what you are saying. Currently I have a mulberry silk mattress pad that is covering the memory foam


I think this may be a "bingo" :)

Silk makes a very nice mattress pad and is very temperature regulating and breathable but it will also reduce the heat reaching your memory foam and will also reduce the compression of the memory foam underneath it as well so it would be firming up your memory foam in two ways.

Phoenix
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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 06 Aug 2013 19:49 #5

  • LastchanceNE
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Phoenix,

Silk makes a very nice mattress pad and is very temperature regulating and breathable but it will also reduce the heat reaching your memory foam and will also reduce the compression of the memory foam underneath it as well so it would be firming up your memory foam in two ways.



Is this also true of a "bamboo" waterproof mattress protector? We have one on our Serta icomfort, which we are going to exchange very soon & hopefully get most of our $ back to use on a quality mattress elsewhere, due to very similar issues that Ez1 has + lumbar disc issues.

But now I'm wondering if the mattress protector might be causing more firmness simply because it is supposed to help with temperature regulation. We have not found the mattress to be too hot while using it, and we have never slept without it in case we needed to return/exchange the mattress.

I did quickly notice when we got the bed last year that certain sheet sets were too tight on it & wouldn't allow it to relax, but the protector seems pretty loose, w/o being "slidey", and it is very thin, not at all a mattress "pad".

I would be interested to know if you have learned whether the "bamboo" type can have the same effect as the silk. And disappointed if so, because I like the way it feels a lot--and it was pricey. We will still be returning the icomfort--I have learned too much on your site to keep it around. I've found a local place or two to try out latex, so if we like that & get one, maybe our protector would work OK on it...?

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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 06 Aug 2013 21:18 #6

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Hi LastchanceNE,

Is this also true of a "bamboo" waterproof mattress protector? We have one on our Serta icomfort, which we are going to exchange very soon & hopefully get most of our $ back to use on a quality mattress elsewhere, due to very similar issues that Ez1 has + lumbar disc issues.

I did quickly notice when we got the bed last year that certain sheet sets were too tight on it & wouldn't allow it to relax, but the protector seems pretty loose, w/o being "slidey", and it is very thin, not at all a mattress "pad"


This would depend on the specifics of the protector but if it's the thinner waterproof/semi breathable membrane type that is bonded to a bamboo fabric then it would have much less effect than a mattress pad that has a layer of silk batting because the heat would reach the memory foam more easily and it will also have less effect on the compression of the memory foam. If the protector is stretchy or loose rather than tight then it would have a little less effect yet. Any type of thicker mattress pad will have a bigger effect on the temperature response and compression of memory foam than a thinner and more stretchy mattress protector. There is always a tradeoff involved in any thicker bedding layer you use over memory foam.

I would be interested to know if you have learned whether the "bamboo" type can have the same effect as the silk. And disappointed if so, because I like the way it feels a lot--and it was pricey. We will still be returning the icomfort--I have learned too much on your site to keep it around. I've found a local place or two to try out latex, so if we like that & get one, maybe our protector would work OK on it...?


If the bamboo type is a bamboo fabric bonded to a membrane then even though the bamboo itself is very breathable and wicks moisture well ... the membrane is much less breathable than a natural fiber and to some degree will restrict airflow and breathability which in turn could increase sleeping temperature. You can see more details about the membrane type of protectors compared to other types in post #89 here . The only way to know for certain how it does with temperature on a specific mattress is to use it but it will almost certainly allow the memory foam to respond more like memory foam is designed to compared to the silk pad even though it may be warmer (depending on the cumulative effect of all the factors that can affect sleeping temperature that are discussed in post #2 here ).

Phoenix
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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 07 Aug 2013 11:31 #7

  • LastchanceNE
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Thanks, Phoenix-

Actually, I found out that we have the Protect-A-Bed luxury protector that you mention in post #89 that has "all-natural Eucalyptus based fibers", not a bamboo one (I think I had bamboo on the brain from reading other forum posts). It has no actual padding, is thin, smooth, and is quite stretchy & just loose enough to not constrict the memory foam.So I think it should be OK for latex, too. No crinkly feel with it either, but my DH put it on wrong-side up once (water-proof side) & I finally realized it after sweating profusely for 2 nights!

I'm glad to see we got something of quality & value from our last mattress set purchase. Now if we can just find a mattress better suited to us than that iComfort. I'm thinking about bringing our protector, fav sheet set, & pillows to our store testing sessions :lol:

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Hip & Shoulder pain - Phoenix can you advise me? 07 Aug 2013 14:38 #8

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Hi LastchanceNE,

There are many types of viscose fabrics that use different types of regenerated cellulose to make the fiber. They are all viscose or "rayon types" of fabrics and can use cellulose from different sources including bamboo, beech, eucalyptus, or even the cell walls of some algae along with many others.

The Protect-a-bed eucalyptus material is one of these and is bonded to the semi-permeable membrane to create a "waterproof" breathable protector. It is also stretchy (some of these are more stretchy than others and can have more or less of a "drum effect") so it will have much less effect on the feel and performance of the memory foam underneath it. It doesn't have the same ventilation or moisture wicking properties as a thicker silk mattress pad (which allows a much higher airflow) which means that the foam underneath will be closer to your body and more conforming but can also be more insulating and sleep warmer.

So I would definitely test the memory foam topper with the protectabed protector for a while (along with the other suggestions) and see how much difference this makes both in terms of softness and in terms of sleeping temperature.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.
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