The shoulder is a complex joint described as the “most movable joint” in the body. With its many individual components and advanced range of motion, the shoulder, unfortunately, is prone to various types of pain-inducing problems.
Among the array of potential causes of shoulder pain, the most common is known as rotator cuff tendonosis. This condition, which occurs when tendons around the shoulder socket become inflamed, can arise when the shoulder is held in one position for too long, especially if that position puts pressure on the joint.
Because of the amount of time we spend every night in bed, it comes as no surprise that many people find shoulder pain to be tied to how they sleep, and more specifically, to their mattress.
Having the right mattress can help prevent shoulder pain in the first place and may reduce pain in people who already have shoulder problems. Our list of the best mattresses for shoulder pain introduces a variety of options — reflecting different mattress types, designs, and price points — to help keep shoulders moving smoothly and without aches and pains.
A solidly-built mattress with a dual-coil system serves up essential shoulder support, notable bounce, and above-average temperature regulation; free White Glove delivery just sweetens the deal.
People worried about shoulder pain can rest easy on the Saatva, the flagship mattress of one of the most well-known names in the online mattress industry.
The Saatva utilizes coil-on-coil construction with two different types of springs. In the support core, which forms the base of the mattress, there is a layer of hourglass-shaped Bonnell coils. These springs are extra thick (13 gauge) and measure 4.5-inches tall in the 11.5-inch model and 7.5-inches tall in the 14.5-inch model.
Above this support core is a 4-inch layer of micro-coils that form part of the mattress comfort system. These springs are individually-wrapped to provide more relief for the shoulders and other pressure points. Above the micro-coils are an array of foam materials, including polyfoam and a memory foam lumbar pad, that are quilted into a euro-style pillow-top.
The foam and micro-coils work in conjunction to create a high-performance blend of conforming, responsiveness, and motion isolation. At the same time, air flows easily through both coil layers, keeping the Saatva cool along with the bed’s moisture-wicking organic cotton cover.
Saatva provides customers with plenty of options. They can select among the two different height models as well as three firmness levels: Soft (3), Medium Firm (6), and Firm (7). Depending on how sharp your pressure points are at the shoulders, the Soft and Medium Firm are most likely to deliver the necessary cushioning.
With free White Glove delivery, the company sets a delivery date for technicians to come to your home, install the mattress, and haul-away your existing bed. There is a 180-night sleep trial with a $99 return shipping fee if you decide not to keep the bed. The Saatva has a 15-year warranty that covers mattress defects.
The Leesa Hybrid uses memory foam and polyfoam comfort layers to relieve pressure and cushion sore shoulders.
The Leesa Hybrid is constructed with comfort layers of aerated polyfoam and memory foam atop a pocketed coil support core. The top polyfoam layer provides some initial bounce and responsiveness, and is aerated to promote airflow. The memory foam layer beneath provides contouring which can help prevent pressure buildup in sensitive areas such as the shoulders, especially for those who sleep on their sides.
The bed features a high-density polyfoam transitional layer that prevents the sleeper from sinking through the comfort layers and into the support core, which consists of pocketed coils. This coil layer is designed with reinforced edges that prevent you from feeling like you may roll off the edge of the bed when you lie close to the perimeter of the mattress.
Because the coils are individually pocketed, this layer also helps prevent motion transfer, which together with the motion-isolating properties of the memory foam, makes this model a good choice for those who share the bed with a partner. The coil layer also helps keep the mattress cool, as it allows air to flow through the mattress and disperse heat.
Leesa provides free delivery and a 100-night sleep trial. They also back the mattress with a 10-year warranty.
The Bear Mattress is a memory foam bed with a firm, supportive build that uses innovative materials to help promote restful sleep and improved athletic recovery.
The Bear Mattress is a firmer memory foam bed that can accommodate the needs of a wide range of different sleepers. Memory foam offers deep pressure relief, helping to reduce stiffness, aches, and pains. Bear’s use of Celliant fiber in the mattress cover is meant to help improve athletic recovery, making it a popular choice for athletes and individuals who lead active lifestyles.
The Bear Mattress begins with a thick, 2-inch layer of graphite gel-infused memory foam. The gel infusion helps to draw heat away from the sleeper’s body before it builds, while memory foam contours closely to help take pressure off of common problem areas. A second layer of polyfoam provides added cushioning and helps prevent sleepers from sinking into the bed’s core. These top layers rest on a thick bed of high-density polyfoam, acting as a stable base and resisting compression.
The Bear’s cover is made from a Celliant textile, a unique fabric that was developed to help improve athletic recovery. Celliant is meant to work by absorbing excess heat from the body, converting it into infrared energy, and then reflecting said infrared back at the sleeper. Along with increases in tissue oxygenation levels and blood circulation, some sleepers have reported feeling better rested and refreshed upon waking.
The Bear Mattress combines a memory foam comfort layer with a firm (7) feel, making it a strong choice for sleepers of all kinds who weigh more than 130 pounds. Memory foam matches the body’s shape, easing pressure buildup regardless of sleeping position, while its firmer feel allows even back and stomach sleepers to feel properly supported. Sleepers who weigh less than 130 pounds may still sleep comfortably on the Bear, though it will likely be too firm for some.
The Bear Mattress is available at a competitive price-point for an all-foam mattress, with frequent promotions that further take the price down. The Bear comes with a 100-night sleep trial, which allows for free returns after a 30-night break-in period. The bed is then backed by a 10-year limited warranty, with a separate 1-year warranty for the cover.
Coil-on-coil construction supplemented by a polyfoam pillow-top allows the WinkBed to offer a high degree of cushion for the shoulders while also providing bounce and standout edge support.
The WinkBed is a well-regarded hybrid mattress option that can effectively promote a healthy shoulder position along with excellent overall comfort.
Two materials drive the performance of the comfort system of the WinkBed. The topmost material is a responsive polyfoam that is quilted into the mattress’s euro-style pillow-top. The second part of the comfort system is a layer of micro-coils. These are individually-wrapped springs, giving them more capability to compress to align with the body’s pressure points, including the shoulders.
The foam and micro-coils create a mix of contouring and bounce that makes the mattress effective at conforming without permitting too much sink. Bounce and stability are further enhanced by the tall support core of pocketed coils. These coils are zoned to generate a more robust feel in key areas.
The support core’s coils are reinforced around the edge, and customers note that the WinkBed has outstanding edge support. The design of the mattress facilitates solid temperature regulation and motion isolation, making the WinkBed a viable option for hot sleepers and couples.
Customers can choose from a Medium Soft (4), Medium Firm (6), or Firm (7) option. Side sleepers, who are more likely to deal with shoulder pain, tend to do better with the Medium Soft or Medium Firm depending on their body weight.
WinkBeds offers a 120-night sleep trial to test the bed out at home, and the company includes a lifetime warranty covering defects for as long as you own the mattress.
Taking advantage of Nolah’s unique AirFoam, the Nolah Original mattress effectively lightens impact at sharp pressure points, including the shoulders, to promote comfortable and restorative sleep.
Nolah’s first mattress, the Nolah Original, is a 10-inch, all-foam mattress that provides essential cushioning to the body’s pain hot spots, including the shoulders.
The well-balanced performance of the Nolah Original is powered by the company’s specialty material, known as Nolah AirFoam. In developing AirFoam, Nolah worked to find a middle ground between memory foam and latex that would capture the benefits of each. In practice, this means that the foam cradles the body well enough for spine and shoulder support, but it is still responsive and avoids excess heat buildup.
AirFoam makes up the top two inches of the Nolah Original mattress. It is complemented by a one-inch layer of transition polyfoam that wards off excess sinking into the bed. A seven-inch support core made with high-density polyfoam serves as a stable and durable base for the Nolah Original’s comfort system.
AirFoam and the overall design of the Nolah Original work to resist heat retention. For people who share a bed, the foam comfortably conforms to the body sufficiently to prevent motion-based disruptions. The mattress has a Medium (5) feel that is especially comfortable to people under 130 pounds and most side sleepers.
The mattress comes with a 120-night sleep trial that lets you test it out in your bedroom as well as a 15-year warranty covering defects in materials and workmanship.
In a big plus for environmentally-minded shoppers, Nolah makes a donation for every mattress sold to the non-profit organization Defenders of Wildlife, which undertakes a number of initiatives to protect animals and natural ecosystems.
A standout all-latex mattress, the PlushBeds Botanical Bliss offers customers top-notch pressure relief with a mattress constructed to meet rigorous standards for sustainability and environmental protection.
Eco-conscious customers who struggle with shoulder pain want a mattress that can help them sleep and feel better while also meeting high standards for sustainable production. Enter the PlushBeds Botanical Bliss, an all-latex mattress that impresses with both its performance and commitment to the environment.
All of the interior layers of the Botanical Bliss are composed of natural latex. This latex, made with the Dunlop process, is certified organic by the rigorous Global Organic Latex Standard (GOLS). The 10-inch version of this mattress has nine total inches of latex divided equally between three layers. 9-inch and 12-inch versions offer different interior layering arrangements.
Latex earns acclaim as a mattress material because it has the ability to conform to the body and relieve pressure while simultaneously providing a high degree of bounce. This makes it easy to move on a latex bed, which is ideal for combination sleepers and for couples who prioritize a mattress that is good for intimate activities.
As an added benefit, latex retains little heat, and the temperature regulation of the mattress is enhanced even further by the breathable cotton and wool materials in its cover. Both the cotton and wool are certified organic by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).
The Botanical Bliss is offered in two firmness levels: Medium (5) and Firm (7). Most shoulder pain sufferers do best with the Medium, but back and stomach sleepers lean toward the Firm.
Though this mattress has a high sticker price, discounts are frequently offered to reduce its final cost. During a 100-night sleep trial, PlushBeds allows customers to return the mattress or get a free layer exchange to modify the firmness. A 25-year warranty covers defects in materials and manufacturing over the long-term.
Innovative targeted gel pods complement memory foam, polyfoam, and pocket coils to generate a pressure-reducing and pain-relieving luxury hybrid mattress from one of the best-known names in the industry.
The Casper Wave Hybrid has numerous selling points for customers who are looking for a luxury mattress to help address shoulder pain. It employs several pressure-relieving components, including an innovative new material developed by Casper.
Spinal support and pain relief from the Wave Hybrid is driven by its comfort system that is constructed with multiple individual layers. The topmost layer is made of polyfoam and provides moderate contouring and responsiveness. The second layer is Casper’s Airscape foam, which is perforated latex, adding further responsiveness and breathability.
The third layer is a zoned memory foam that is softer around the shoulders and firmer around the midsection to both cushion pressure points and help keep the spine aligned. The fourth layer uses a specially-formulated design of foam filled with targeted gel pods. Those pods allow the mattress to provide added support to parts of the body that need it, which is a welcome relief for people with pain hot spots. The comfort system rests on a base of individually-pocketed coils encased in a durable foam.
The Wave Hybrid has a Medium (5) firmness level that suits most side sleepers. It also works well for people under 130 pounds who sleep on their back or stomach. The materials are arranged to reduce heat buildup, making this a luxury hybrid bed that is well-received by hot sleepers.
Casper provides free White Glove delivery that includes setup of the Wave and haul-away of an old mattress. Customers have 100 nights to test out the mattress and get long-term purchase protection from a 10-year warranty.
The Leesa Legend is a high-performing luxury hybrid that features two coil layers, an impressive mix of bounce and conforming, and an eco-friendly cover made with recycled plastics.
The Leesa Legend is the newest release from Leesa, a brand that built a solid reputation in the early days of the online mattress industry. This luxury hybrid combines pressure relief and bounce with added features that increase its appeal to eco-conscious customers.
The interior of the Leesa Legend is composed of six layers. The top layer of the comfort system is one inch of an aerated polyfoam with mild contouring, and the second layer is one inch of deeper-contouring memory foam.
The third layer is an innovative mixed-material: toward the head and foot of the bed, it is pocketed micro-coils, and in the middle, a softer polyfoam. This 1.5-inch thick layer’s zoned design cultivates a tailored feel to accommodate common pain points. The final layer of the comfort system is one inch of a firmer transition polyfoam.
The driving component of the support core is six inches of pocketed innerspring coils that offer bounce and stability while isolating more motion than traditional springs. The coils are reinforced with foam around the perimeter to make the bed stronger at the edges. A one-inch layer of foam rests underneath the coils as well.
The breathable cover is made with a mix of materials, including 28% Recycled PES, which is made from plastic bottles that would otherwise be thrown away or wind up as environmental pollution.
The Leesa Legend is Medium Firm (6), which sets it up nicely to work for sleepers of most positions and weights. Mild contouring makes it well-suited to soften impact at the shoulders and hips where many people suffer from pain.
The mattress comes with a 100-night sleep trial and a 10-year warranty. Leesa is also a registered B-Corp, meaning that social programs are part of their core mission.
If you’re dealing with chronic shoulder pain, you’ve probably experienced first-hand how a good or bad night’s sleep can affect your pain levels. With the right mattress, you can give your body the support it needs to recuperate and recover.
Finding the right mattress, though, requires understanding the relationship between sleep and pain and knowing what to look for when mattress shopping.
Sleep is a fundamental biological need that affects all aspects of health, including pain. Research indicates that sleep and pain have a bidirectional relationship, meaning that each influences the other.
Getting good sleep has been found to reduce perceived daily pain levels of chronic pain sufferers. Quality sleep may reduce anxiety, stress, and other negative emotions that can exacerbate pain.
In addition, being in pain can make it harder to sleep. Physical discomfort may prevent falling asleep or lead to nighttime awakenings. Worries about pain can spread to sleep, complicating a person’s ability to get consistent rest.
The fact that sleep and pain are so interlinked means that taking steps to sleep better, including choosing an optimal mattress, can provide a welcome means of pain relief. That pain reduction can facilitate even better sleep, fueling a positive cycle of nightly rest and decreased pain.
To identify the best mattress for shoulder pain, you need to know what factors are most important. The mattress industry is replete with marketing jargon that has the potential to lead shoppers astray, but only a handful of factors are most likely to influence your satisfaction with a new mattress.
In most cases, a Medium or Medium Firm mattress is best for shoulder pain, but the ideal firmness level for any person depends on their sleeping position and body shape.
Firmness is ranked on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the softest. A mattress that is too soft may cause the body to sink out of alignment, but one that is too firm may create heightened impact on the shoulder.
Firmness is a subjective preference and should be considered along with other factors, such as mattress type, price, pressure relief, and motion isolation, to choose the best mattress for any individual.
Categorizing mattresses provides a way to understand mattress construction and compare and contrast performance. Figuring out which type best suits your needs can simplify mattress shopping and guide you toward a top choice.
Mattresses that are built in a certain way will share some characteristics, but they won’t all be the same. Within each type, there is notable variation based on exactly how any specific model is built.
Definition: For a mattress to be a hybrid, it needs two components: a coil-based support core and a significant comfort system. That comfort system may be made with one or more layers and can feature materials like memory foam, polyfoam, micro-coils, latex, cotton, wool, and/or other fabrics.
Blend of Features: A hybrid is designed to generate the bounce, stability, and temperature control found in innersprings while using the comfort system to strengthen pressure relief and motion isolation. This allows pain sufferers to take advantage of balanced and robust features offered by a mix of materials.
Definition: An innerspring mattress has a coil-based system as its only or primary component. These beds, a mainstay in the industry for decades, don’t have any significant comfort system and provide support almost exclusively through compression of the coils.
Economical and Modifiable: Most pain sufferers won’t get enough pressure relief from an innerspring mattress alone. But these beds are often economical, and a latex or foam mattress topper can be placed on top to create a DIY comfort system. Some people find that this is a lower-cost way to construct a mattress that suits their needs.
Definition: When the interior components of a mattress are all made with latex, we refer to it as an all-latex, true-latex, or just simply a latex mattress. In most beds, manufacturers use natural latex, but some lower-cost options use synthetic materials. More than one type of latex is frequently layered within the bed to create a distinct support core and comfort system.
Responsive Support: Latex is a durable material that provides both bounce and mild conforming. With these characteristics, it can provide cushioning at the shoulders without any bothersome sinking or “quicksand” feeling.
Definition: Airbeds have a distinct design based upon a support core of air chambers. In most airbeds, there is one air chamber on each side, and the inflation of that chamber can be adjusted in real-time to modify the firmness feel. In addition to this support core, there may be a comfort system using materials like foam or latex.
Full Firmness Control: People with pain may find that their firmness needs change based on how sharp their pain is at that moment. With an airbed, you can use a remote or smartphone to quickly and easily give the bed a different feel to provide comfort and pain relief.
Definition: In foam mattresses, there is no coil-based layer. The support core is almost always a high-density polyfoam, and the comfort system can include one or more layers of memory foam, polyfoam, latex, or textiles like cotton and wool.
Conforming For Pressure Relief: People with the sharpest pressure points, including at the shoulders, may need deep contouring to cradle the body and relieve that pressure. On that count, memory foam is a standout material, and in general, foam beds provide high levels of hug and cradling.