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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 06 Nov 2021 04:49 #11

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I didn't realize I never mentioned the mattress name. It's a SleepEZ Roma.

Maybe you're right about the mid layer. Like I said, I'm just trying to get my first order as close as I think I can get. If I return the Roma I can't do any layer exchanges from SleepEZ/LatexMattressFactory unless I wait a year and then purchase the layers. So I either take a $250 chance with the LMF 28ILD mid knowing I'm stuck with it if it isn't right, or I "invest" in the $500 DIYNB 28-33ILD mid, knowing that I can at least swap it out if I need to for $80. DIYNB is the only reputable place I see that actively carries a ~25ILD layer, so there really aren't any alternatives.

I do sink adequately into the 19ILD layer but it feels "right" if that makes sense. My knees hardly sink in at all, but my hips and side do nicely. I used to sleep with my arm mostly under me, but I now roll my shoulder forward a bit with my arm out front and that made a big difference. I THINK I want just a tiny bit more sink in and I would be 99% of the way there but I'm not really sure. Again though, the cover might be making the mid layer firmer than it should be, so a "clean" DIY stack with the same ILD layers and a stretch cover might be perfect. all I can say is that the Roma by itself on the 28ILD side was excruciating after 2 hours, adding the 3" 19ILD T layer was a definite improvement, but still not right.

One thing I'm having trouble grasping is whether the top layer or mid layer should be adjusted.

Side question: Are 12" (4x3") stacks generally overkill? (that would at least make me feel better if I needed to buy an 4th layer. Even if it was something like ~25+19+28+38)


Looks like the Roma’s quilting is 1.5” of supersoft polyfoam which I would expect to aid in pressure relief. If you change to a zippered cover with no quilted foam, you lose some padding but maybe gain some compliance from the intermediate layer. Overall I wouldn’t expect a huge change. Certainly not the 38/45 scenario you referenced previously. I think a greater change in feel would result from moving the 19ild talalay inside a cover. Latex wants to spread outward when you lay on it. A cover will lend structure to the latex and make it feel more substantial. It’s worth calling SleepEZ to get their take. More data points at this point is helpful.
Side Note: The Roma is listed as med over firm. Based on the sleep EZ FAQ’s, med is 30-32, not 28. You might want to confirm that spec. I also noticed the LMF layer you are considering is listed as 28 but the full range is not given. That make it hard to know if it is the same as what is offered by their sister company SleepEZ or slightly softer.

Without more testing, there is no good way to know which layer to target first. The best you can do is research potential causes of your discomfort and the likely impact of changes to your mattress setup. Then resign yourself to trial and error. I would suggest you keep a log to analyze your progress and try to stick to one variable at a time. I know you are trying to limit your costs, but I will mention that having more layers on hand allows you to test more combinations and narrow down your options.
There are a few posts that speak to your shoulder comment. Phoenix might have some links on hand otherwise you will have to search for them. Could give you more insight as to which layer to target.

As far as purchasing and returns, double check if a return to SleepEZ precludes a return to LMF in the same year. While the companies are related, they may operate independently. Foam Sweet Foam has dunlop in wide variety of ild’s, but you would have to ask if they sell layers independently. You can also check with APM, SleepEZ, and flexus to see if they can order items not listed on their website.

9” is adequate to support someone at your size. 12” might allow you to achieve a plusher setup but be aware that the entire system functions differently as the thickness changes. An ILD that worked as an intermediate or comfort layer in a 3x3” may not be viable in a 4x3” setup.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 06 Nov 2021 10:32 #12

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Looks like the Roma’s quilting is 1.5” of supersoft polyfoam which I would expect to aid in pressure relief. If you change to a zippered cover with no quilted foam, you lose some padding but maybe gain some compliance from the intermediate layer. Overall I wouldn’t expect a huge change. Certainly not the 38/45 scenario you referenced previously. I think a greater change in feel would result from moving the 19ild talalay inside a cover. Latex wants to spread outward when you lay on it. A cover will lend structure to the latex and make it feel more substantial. It’s worth calling SleepEZ to get their take. More data points at this point is helpful.
Side Note: The Roma is listed as med over firm. Based on the sleep EZ FAQ’s, med is 30-32, not 28. You might want to confirm that spec. I also noticed the LMF layer you are considering is listed as 28 but the full range is not given. That make it hard to know if it is the same as what is offered by their sister company SleepEZ or slightly softer.


Just for the record, the topper I have is inside a stretch cotton cover, as for the ILD differences, I never noticed that. I just assumed that as sister companies they would be the same. I emailed them today to find out.

Without more testing, there is no good way to know which layer to target first. The best you can do is research potential causes of your discomfort and the likely impact of changes to your mattress setup. Then resign yourself to trial and error. I would suggest you keep a log to analyze your progress and try to stick to one variable at a time. I know you are trying to limit your costs, but I will mention that having more layers on hand allows you to test more combinations and narrow down your options.
There are a few posts that speak to your shoulder comment. Phoenix might have some links on hand otherwise you will have to search for them. Could give you more insight as to which layer to target.

As far as purchasing and returns, double check if a return to SleepEZ precludes a return to LMF in the same year. While the companies are related, they may operate independently. Foam Sweet Foam has dunlop in wide variety of ild’s, but you would have to ask if they sell layers independently. You can also check with APM, SleepEZ, and flexus to see if they can order items not listed on their website.


APM said they do not and will not, SleepEZ I'm checking with as well, SOL said no, Flexus said their supply chain is very limited so at the moment they will not either. That said, I might try that 23-27 layer from DIYNB as a top layer if the 19+28+38 doesn't seem to work out. I've also thought about it and a 1" 20ILD layer from SOL might be a nice soft comfort layer ontop of the 23-37 layer. Like you said it's going to be a bit of trial and error, but it will always be able to be modified which is key. At least I'm sourcing some options.

Do you think there would be a "noticeable" difference between 19ILD Talalay and 19ILD Dunlop? I know they behave slightly different, but I'm not sure how perceptible it would be. If the 23-27 turns out to be too hard it could be an option.

9” is adequate to support someone at your size. 12” might allow you to achieve a plusher setup but be aware that the entire system functions differently as the thickness changes. An ILD that worked as an intermediate or comfort layer in a 3x3” may not be viable in a 4x3” setup.


Interesting, but it does make sense; as you add overall total thickness, each layer compresses a bit less. Our "ideal" size range was 9, 10, or 12 simply because SLAB and a few other vendors make covers in this size. 11" seems to be an outlier for most places. SLAB has a nice bamboo cotton hybrid cover that I think we might buy. Plenty of options here though.
I don't think that >10" is necessary for us too.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 06 Nov 2021 11:27 #13

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SleepEz just got back to me. Jeremy said that the ILD numbers for both SEZ and LMF are
Soft – 19-20
Med – 30-32
Firm – 38-40
XFirm – 43-44

Also, I forgot to touch on the last post regarding LMF/SEZ returns. According to their CS they "share" returns, so 1 return counts for both SEZ/LMF.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 06 Nov 2021 18:19 #14

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I don’t have a good feel for comparing dunlop and talalay of the same ild for soft comfort layers. Generally, the firmer/denser the latex and the further down in the stack, the less noticeable the difference.

RE: Roma having 30-32 dunlop on top. I found this to be relatively firm as an intermediate layer. Your preferences may be very different but I would lean toward that as a starting point.

Not sure what to think about the DIYNB 23-27layer. If it skews towards the softer side it’s a possibility for a comfort layer. If it skews towards to upper end of the range I would lean towards use as an intermediate layer.

RE: sourcing

Mattress To Go sells blended talalay toppers. Worth a call to see if they can help you source something. They always seem to be knowledgeable and helpful.

Did you try FoamSweetFoam for dunlop? Their 23ild medium-soft might be an option for the comfort layer. The 28 med-firm might be a small step down from the 30-32 in the Roma but you will need to compare densities.

APM carries 100% natural talalay in 20-24 labeled N2. It’s listed under the topper/cores section instead of the DIY Components and may be an option for a firmer comfort layer.

If you start a new thread dedicated to sourcing you might get better suggestions.

Radium and Talalay global are the only two manufacturers for talalay. If you strike out everywhere else you can email them directly for help locating a vendor. I have found both responsive.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 07 Nov 2021 08:13 #15

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I'm glad you brought that ILD discrepancy to my eyes because I completely missed it. If what Jeremy from both companies said is true, the ILDs on LMF are wrong and I would have been even more confused.

I have an email out to DIYNB in regards to how that range works. Whether it's a full range possible per slab depending on test location or if each slab is more consistent (+/-1ILD) and the averages just range in that area.
I also just sent an email to FSF to see if they will sell layers by themselves. I didn't see an option for it on the site, but their Med-Soft does seem like a good option.

I think I at least have a solid baseline to go off of at the moment. It's not the cheapest plan, but I think it's the best starting point I can have. I need to jsut get the return rolling for the return and order all of this. Packing that mattress up is going to be a good time...

Proposed 9" starter build:
3" SleepEZ "19ILD" Talalay - Reuse and replace if necessary. Too soft: MTG 23ILD M-S if possible, or APM Natural Talalay 20-24. Too firm: add a 1" 20ILD and/or 2" Serene
3" APM 25-29ILD Natural Talalay, or 28ILD Blended Talalay mid
3" APM Dunlop 34-38ILD or Blended Talalay 34-36 ​

That on paper looks like a slightly softer version what I have already and gives plenty of adjustment options due to the 60 day comfort exchange policies of APM.

Side note: if the 3" 19ILD topper doesn't work out, I wonder if any places exist that would split it into a 2" and a 1" layer.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 08 Nov 2021 11:42 #16

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Well, I took the plunge. Placed my orders and settled on this:
3" SleepEZ "19ILD" Talalay - Reuse
3" APM 28ILD Blended Talalay
3" APM 36ILD Blended Talalay
Going to see how that feels with the top layer in a stretch cotton cover and go from there.

Now I just need to find a charity to take the Roma to, I guess SleepEZ's policy changed and they just want donations. ​

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 09 Nov 2021 01:29 #17

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Well, I took the plunge. Placed my orders and settled on this:
3" SleepEZ "19ILD" Talalay - Reuse
3" APM 28ILD Blended Talalay
3" APM 36ILD Blended Talalay
Going to see how that feels with the top layer in a stretch cotton cover and go from there.

Now I just need to find a charity to take the Roma to, I guess SleepEZ's policy changed and they just want donations. ​


Best of luck. I hope it works out. If you still end up with issues try rearranging the layers for clues as to what helps or hurts your situation. You can also make use of other surfaces like a couch or the bare floor to get other points of comparison.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 27 Dec 2021 08:45 #18

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Well, the slabs finally came in on 12/24, ~7 weeks later. Vanessa kept me somewhat updated when my 36ILD was missing from their shipment.

The 36ILD was 60.5"x81"
The 28ILD was 60x78" (I did ask what the acceptable variance in here)
The 28ILD slab also appeared to be two slabs glued together, but one was heavily discolored/darker compared to the other half and my other Talalay slabs. Everything seems ok from a product standpoint as they both feel about the same, but not sure if this means that it has UV damage or has been sitting for a long time.

They only marked the 36ILD slab, so hopefully I got the correct pieces.

On the bad side, the first few nights were about the same pain level as what the ROMA + topper was (3" 19ild Tal + 1.5" foam + 3" 29ILD Dun + 3" 38ILD Dun). I'm waking up a few hours early with mid-back pain. My body might need a bit longer to adjust, but I think we need to do some modification.

I do have the option of a comfort exchange with APM, but the only layer I can see exchanging is the 36ILD support layer for either a 32 or a 28. This will cost around $100 in round trip shipping though where a 1" slab is slightly more than that and infinitely more customizable.

I'm leaning towards starting with 1" of 19ILD Dunlop to go under the 19ILD Talalay layer. If things don't improve I might try 1-2" of Serene foam on top but also thinking about adding another 2" layer somewhere. Either more 28ILD or 34ILD to go between the 28 and 36.

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 27 Dec 2021 09:10 #19

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I'm also wondering about the mid layer too? Would making the mid layer thicker possibly be a better option here? So many choices.

A 4-5" 28ILD layer would have slightly more contouring, but still be supportive than a 3" 28ILD with 4" of 19ILD right?

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Struggling with back pain, DIY layer advice - Side Sleeper 29 Dec 2021 18:24 #20

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Nick sorry to hear you are still experiencing back pain. I'll attempt to answer your questions. Maybe the mods will chime in with some more thoughts.

Well, the slabs finally came in on 12/24, ~7 weeks later. Vanessa kept me somewhat updated when my 36ILD was missing from their shipment.

The 36ILD was 60.5"x81"
The 28ILD was 60x78" (I did ask what the acceptable variance in here)
The 28ILD slab also appeared to be two slabs glued together, but one was heavily discolored/darker compared to the other half and my other Talalay slabs. Everything seems ok from a product standpoint as they both feel about the same, but not sure if this means that it has UV damage or has been sitting for a long time.

They only marked the 36ILD slab, so hopefully I got the correct pieces.


What size is your mattress? King? If i'm not mistaken, the largest size mold for talalay slabs is queen. To make a king they glue together two twin XL pieces.

As for the size variance, any chance that this is just due to the elastic nature of latex? If you work the material toward or away from the center does it even out? See the wavy motion APM uses to adjust the latex in this video

Not sure what to say about the color without seeing a picture. Could just be a slight difference between batches.

I don't doubt that you received the correct 28ild layer but if you want to independently confirm see if their is a tag or a product code stamped on the edges of the slab. If so you can match it witch product codes listed in other post or contact the manufacturer directly.

//
On the bad side, the first few nights were about the same pain level as what the ROMA + topper was (3" 19ild Tal + 1.5" foam + 3" 29ILD Dun + 3" 38ILD Dun). I'm waking up a few hours early with mid-back pain. My body might need a bit longer to adjust, but I think we need to do some modification.


can you give more details on the discomfort you are experiencing? Does it come on relatively quickly or only after sleeping several hours? Do you feel any pressure points or numbness anywhere (hips/shoulders) or is just muscle pain in the mid back early in the morning? How do your hips and shoulders "feel" when sinking in to the current setup. Too much/too little? When in your sleeping position, if your partner looks at your spine at bed level does it appear relatively straight from your tailbone to your neck or is there a curve. If curved, what part the back and which direction? A long straight edge, like a broom stick, might be helpful for comparison.

Previously with the Roma/topper setup you said you felt like you bottomed out the soft top layer and experienced some hammocking. You also said that you rolled your shoulder forward as opposed to sleeping with it directly under you. If this all still the same?

You didn't mention anything about the new cover. Would it be correct to assume that it made no difference?

after you answer the above questions, the first change you should try is swapping the top and middle layer. Putting the 28 on top will offer more support but the 19ild in the middle will still allow for contouring. Let us know if the symptoms get better or worse, answering all the same questions. Hopefully the comparison will offer insight as to whether you need softer, firmer, thicker, etc.

I do have the option of a comfort exchange with APM, but the only layer I can see exchanging is the 36ILD support layer for either a 32 or a 28. This will cost around $100 in round trip shipping though where a 1" slab is slightly more than that and infinitely more customizable.

I'm leaning towards starting with 1" of 19ILD Dunlop to go under the 19ILD Talalay layer. If things don't improve I might try 1-2" of Serene foam on top but also thinking about adding another 2" layer somewhere. Either more 28ILD or 34ILD to go between the 28 and 36.


I would caution your plan of action. When making changes, try to swap one thing at a time and like for like so as to introduce as few variables as possible. I.E. swap talalay for talalay and dunlop for dunlop, keeping brands consistent if possible. At least until you have more data points work off of. You might also find that adding/subtracting 1" increments has a relatively small change and might be geared toward fine tuning. Doesn't sound like you are at that point. I'll refrain from any more suggestions until you report back.

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