Best Mattresses for Neck Pain in 2021
The wrong mattress can be a pain in the neck, reduce pain and soreness with one of our 6 best mattresses for neck pain.
May 20th, 2021 •
Expert Insights from Dr. Navin Ramchandani, MD, a Medical Diagnostician and Owner of R&R Medical Centre in Barbados. He is also an Advanced Paediatric Life Support (APLS) International instructor with the Advanced Life Support Group (ALSG), and a Paediatric BASIC (Basic Assessment and Support in Intensive Care) international instructor.
“If you’ve noticed you’re experiencing neck pain, you may be sleeping on an old mattress that no longer offers the proper support,” says Dr. Navin Ramchandani.
Mattresses aren’t built to last forever, and your body may signal that it’s time for a new one by registering pain in your neck, shoulders, or back. If you find yourself running to the chiropractor to eliminate pain, consider a new mattress.
The right mattress can reduce or entirely eliminate neck pain caused by strained muscles or misalignment. The key is to find a bed that offers the right kind of support. “Finding a supportive, yet soft mattress like the ZenHaven, built for reducing neck pain and soreness, can help improve and alleviate strained muscles,” says Dr. Navin Ramchandani.
Our top 6 best mattresses for neck pain have been selected because they meet criteria for the kind of support and comfort that promises both reduced pain and better sleep.
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Best Mattresses for Neck Pain
- Editor’s Pick – ZenHaven
- Best for Neck and Back Pain – Brooklyn Signature
- Best for Seniors – DreamCloud
- Most Affordable – Layla
- Best for Side Sleepers – Casper Hybrid
- Best for Neck and Shoulder Pain – Purple
Before a mattress can make our list, it is extensively tested in our Mattress Advisor lab. Each bed is rated in essential areas like pressure relief, spinal alignment, responsiveness, and motion transfer to get an understanding of mattress performance. Each of these categories is rated on a scale from 1 to 10.
We also assess company policies regarding shipping, sleep trial period, return policy, and warranty. All of these areas are scored, and each mattress receives an overall Mattress Advisor rating.
Please Note: Our recommendations for mattresses that support fibromyalgia are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment.
- 100% natural Talalay latex
- Eco-conscious shoppers
- All sleep positions
No pain whatsoever all night long.”- Lois I.
Soft side: 4-5/10; Firm side: 7-8/10
The ZenHaven by Saatva is our editor’s pick because it is an absolutely exceptional mattress for mitigating neck pain and soreness at half the cost of comparable retail brands. The mattress is made from all-natural 100% Talalay latex combined with wool and cotton for a healthy toxin-free mattress.
Talalay refers to the way the latex is made. The rubber tree milk is processed into foam through new and more costly technology to create a better more responsive latex foam. This and the other natural and organic materials make for the greenest bed around with unparalleled contouring to keep the head, neck, shoulders and back aligned and pain free.
You have the choice of luxury plush or gentle firm, two slightly different firmness levels, on each side of the flippable mattress. The right fit to relieve neck pain is an individual preference and the ZenHaven gives you options.
Whichever side you choose, this mattress comes with a 120-night sleep trial, a 20-year warranty, and optional white glove delivery with free mattress removal. All this makes for a great mattress and buying experience, and the assurance of a good night’s sleep.
Read our full ZenHaven mattress review.
Best for Neck and Back Pain
- People with aches and pains
- Those looking for different firmness options
- Hot sleepers
Excellent mattress…firm and therapeutic for neck and back pain.”- Rebecca A.
Choose your preference: Available in soft, medium or firm
This hybrid mattress uses layered memory foam and pocketed coils. It offers exceptional contouring and great spinal alignment to support neck and back and reduce discomfort. Reviews talk about the perfect combination of cushion and bounce which is preferred by most customers.
It comes in three firmness options, soft, medium, and firm. Medium is best mattress for back pain. They also gel-infuse their foam for a cooler sleep. Overall, the bed is extremely comfortable allowing for deep relaxation and the loosening of those tight neck and back muscles.
Other highlights of the Brooklyn Signature are the 120-night sleep trial and 10-year warranty. They offer free shipping and returns, and discounts to college students, teachers, first responders, and those in the military. This mattress is very affordable and a sure thing for reducing chronic neck soreness and chronic back pain.
Read our full Brooklyn Signature mattress review.
Best for Seniors
- All sleep positions
- Those looking for a lifetime warranty
- People with mobility issues
Love it. A perfect balance of firm and comfort.”- David R.
The DreamCloud mattress is a great choice for seniors because it addresses their needs, including neck pain. “The DreamCloud bed features uses a memory foam blend, which helps alleviate neck pain by providing support to relieve pressure and align the spine,” says Dr. Navin Ramchandani.
The hybrid mattress is a 6.5 luxury firm. DreamCloud has paid attention to what is important in a mattress for seniors like great edge support and cooling properties.
Heavy gauge coils surround the perimeter of the mattress making it easy to get in and out of bed or sit on the edge without sliding off. DreamCloud has gel-infused memory foam, so the mattress sleeps nice and cool. It is also finished off with a cashmere-polyester blend euro top layer that is beyond comfortable for tired muscles and joints.
This memory foam mattress offers just the right amount of support to relieve pressure, align the spine, and allow for deep relaxation. This helps reduce pain, keep your neck properly supported, and results in a deeper more restful sleep. The pocketed coils are designed with minimal motion transfer for stability and uninterrupted slumber.
The DreamCloud also comes with an unbeatable 365-night sleep trial and a lifetime warranty. It has the CertiPUR-US® certification against toxic chemicals. Overall, we think this is a great mattress for seniors to reduce neck pain and get better quality sleep.
Read our full DreamCloud mattress review.
Most Affordable Mattress
- Side sleepers or combination sleepers
- People with muscle pain or inflammation
- Those looking for a lifetime warranty
This mattress is great for those looking for an affordable plush mattress!”- Shawn D.
Soft side: 4-5/10; Firm side: 7/10
Layla is an unusual memory foam mattress that is designed with your day, not just your night, in mind. They have infused their memory foam with therapeutic copper to help with pain. Copper can reduce swelling and joint inflammation and is a wonderful antidote for neck pain and better mobility through the day.
The mattress is made with two different levels of firmness and is constructed so you can sleep on either side depending on what feels best, either medium soft or medium firm. Medium firm is more generally accepted as the best support for neck and back pain, both upper back pain and lower back pain. Firmness, however, is an individual preference, so give both sides a try.
Another reason we recommend Layla is their support services. We gave them perfect scores for shipping, sleep trial, returns, and warranty, meaning we couldn’t see how they could do it any better. This includes a lifetime warranty, a 120-night trial period, and free shipping and returns. A budget mattress that reduces neck pain and has amazing support services, you won’t be disappointed if you choose Layla.
Read our full Layla mattress review.
Best for Side Sleepers
- People with back pain
- Anyone with muscle pain and tightness
- Side and combination sleepers
I don’t wake up with pain in my back, neck, or hips anymore.”- Chantelle
The Casper Hybrid is their original high-quality Casper mattress with an added layer of innersprings. This gives the mattress a little more bounce and lots of great support. Of note is a middle layer of memory foam with zoned firmness. It has different foams in the upper, middle, and lower parts of the mattress to offer tailored support to individual parts of the body. This creates amazing pain relief and is an excellent choice for people with neck tenderness.
Casper places a softer foam under the head and shoulder area for more cushion and support. They put a firmer foam under hips and core for stability, and a medium foam under the lower body for a customized fit.
Casper works for all sleep positions but is especially one of the best beds for side sleepers. It has great contouring to hold and support head and shoulders so neck muscles can relax. This hybrid also has highly rated responsiveness, making it easy to roll over during the night. It comes with free shipping and free returns, a 100-night sleep trial, and a 10-year warranty.
Read our full Casper Hybrid mattress review.
Best for Neck and Shoulder Pain
- All sleep positions
- Cushioning of pressure points
- People who want a mattress that will last
My neck pain has gone away, and I sleep so much better.”- George M.
In order to relieve neck pain, a mattress must support the head and shoulders. That means a mattress with great pressure point relief, like Purple. The Purple mattress has a layered construction with the comfort layer made from a unique hyper-elastic polymer that is breathable.
This layer is molded into a grid pattern that is airy and pliable and placed on top of a double layer of support foam. This is a one-of-a-kind system. The Purple further has a reputation for achieving notable pain relief and is recommended for athletes.
Related: Best Mattress for Athletes
On the service side, Purple has free shipping and returns, 100-night trial period, and a 10-year warranty. If you are looking for a long-lasting mattress, Purple is highly durable so it can keep that neck pain away for years to come.
Read our full Purple mattress review.
Choosing a Mattress for Neck Pain: Buyer’s Guide
A new mattress that reduces your neck pain can work wonders, but what do you need to know to make an informed purchase? There are a number of variables and a plethora of choices. Let us walk you through the important things to consider such as
- Causes of Neck Pain
- Sleeping Position and Neck Pain
- Best Type of Mattress for Neck Pain
- What to Look for in a Mattress for Neck Pain
Poor sleep doesn’t cause neck pain, it just makes you feel it more acutely. So, what causes neck soreness? The most common causes include psychological things like stress, and behavior therapy is often a first course of treatment. When we are stressed, we may unconsciously do things like gritting our teeth that can cause neck tightness and pain.
There are physical variables as well, like standing in the same position while working or tensing when doing a repetitive task like gardening. Poor posture can cause neck pain along with carrying a heavy shoulder bag or purse. Car accidents are a common cause, especially if you are hit from behind and get whiplash. Last, but not least, is a poor sleep position. If your head, neck, and shoulders are not supported, or your spine is out of alignment, tension can build up and cause neck pain.
Neck pain and sleep may be more related than you think. A substantial number of people with chronic neck pain also have a sleep disorder, often insomnia. Pain can cause poor sleep and poor sleep makes you more sensitive to pain. If you don’t intervene, this cycle can continue or even get worse.
One approach to solving insomnia and chronic neck soreness is relaxation therapy. Teaching the body to relax, and to let go of tension, can lessen pain and improve sleep. A mattress that helps you relax, one where you feel fully supported, can make a huge difference in your ability to relax while sleeping.
Since a common cause of neck pain is sleeping in an unsupportive position, let’s take a look at different sleep positions and their effects on neck soreness.
Side sleeping is considered a good position for neck pain. With the right mattress it is easy to keep your spine aligned and get the support you need. Look for a contouring top layer of memory foam or latex that is designed to support side sleeping and take pressure off. Also, choose a medium firm mattress that helps keep your spine aligned.
Sleeping on your back is also considered a good position for neck pain. It puts your body in a neutral position and aligns your spine taking pressure off your head and neck. Use a low-profile pillow to keep your spine aligned and your neck relaxed. A medium firm mattress is also good for this position.
Read More: Best Mattresses for Back Sleepers
Sleeping on your stomach can throw your spine out of alignment and cause substantial neck pain. Poor sleep position is considered a cause of chronic neck pain, and stomach sleeping is specifically referenced. If you do sleep on your stomach, consider changing sleep positions to reduce neck soreness or augment with a low-profile or thin pillow to help maintain spine alignment. Body pillows can help make side sleeping more comfortable if you want to adopt a better position.
Read More: Best Mattresses for Stomach Sleepers
Memory Foam Mattress
You may have noticed that our top picks include a lot of memory foam mattresses. This is because memory foam offers a unique type of cushion that molds closely to the body and offers proper support all the way up and down and deep into all of your curves. The neck is completely supported, so there is no tension that can lead to pain. Memory foam is a good mattress type if you are looking for a bed to reduce neck pain.
Innerspring mattresses do not have the kind of contouring materials that offer pressure point support or mold to the shape of your body. A good innerspring mattress with a plush pillow top and the right kind of pillow could be okay for some people with neck pain, but it would not be high on the list of recommendations.
Latex, like memory foam, is a softer mattress that has the ability to contour and mold to your body offering a superior kind of support. Natural latex mattresses can work very well to ease tension and support pain reduction. They have the advantage of being a natural material made from rubber trees that is non-toxic and eco-friendly.
We also profiled several hybrids in our top picks. This is because the best hybrid mattresses can be that perfect combination of innerspring and foam layers that create excellent support for neck pain. They are usually memory foam or latex in the upper layers and springs as a base. They offer great stability and edge support.
If your mattress is going to help reduce neck pain, it needs to have certain characteristics. Things to look for might include good pressure relief and good spinal alignment. Other important considerations are sleep trial period and price.
Neck pain can originate in the neck (tight muscles), or it can be the result of your spine being out of alignment. Either way, you want a mattress that takes the pressure off, so your body can relax, and muscles can soften and let go of tension. Memory foam and natural latex are the two most supportive quality materials when it comes to really giving good pressure relief.
Read More: Why Pressure Relief Is Important
When your spine is in alignment, everything works better in your body. Your blood flows properly, your nerves are unencumbered, and you experience far less pain. Since neck pain can originate from a poor sleep position, people with neck pain need to pay attention to good spinal alignment in a mattress. This can help pain sufferers dramatically.
Read More: Why Spine Alignment Is Important
You might be hesitant to buy a mattress online. You can do your research, but how do you know you will like the bed? No worries. Online mattress companies that ship bed-in–a-box directly to you offer a trial period. You can sleep on the mattress for at least 30 days and up to 1 year and still return it if it isn’t right. Many manufacturers also offer free returns, so you have nothing to lose; it is risk-free!
Buying a mattress online eliminates the middleman and cuts costs. That allows you to buy a more luxurious mattress at a more affordable price. The mattresses we profiled range in price from roughly $600 to $1,800 for a queen-sized bed. The more natural and organic beds will have a higher price tag. Many offer financing and some at 0% interest.
Can your sleep position cause neck pain?
A poor sleep position is listed as one of the primary causes of neck pain. This can result from an old or sagging mattress, a poor mattress and pillow combination, or the position you choose to sleep in.
Sometimes pain forces us into less than ideal sleep positions that can actually exacerbate pain. The solution is to have a mattress that supports a good sleep position, with all body parts supported, and good spinal alignment.
What if you have both neck and shoulder pain?
It is common to have pain in the neck and shoulders, or neck and back. The good news is that the kind of mattress that helps one, helps all. Memory foam and natural latex have a property called viscosity that allows it mold to any shape and support that shape.
Consequently, both neck and shoulders get the support they need, and this alleviates pain.
Related: Best Mattresses for Shoulder Pain
What is the best pillow for neck pain?
Not a simple question to answer, because it depends on your sleep position, your body weight, your body type, your firmness level preference, and the kind of pillow material you like. You may prefer down, memory foam, natural latex, or something else. There are a number of variables to be considered to get the right pillow to reduce neck pain. For example, if you sleep on your stomach, on a firmer mattress, you might do best with a low-profile latex pillow. For a deeper dive, check out our Best Pillows for Neck Pain.
Recap: Our Top Picks for the Best Mattresses for Neck Pain
|Brooklyn Signature||Best for Neck and Back Pain||9.1/10|
|DreamCloud||Best for Seniors||8.5/10|
|Casper Hybrid||Best for Side Sleepers||9.4/10|
|Purple||Best for Neck and Shoulder Pain||8.4/10|
Pain in the neck? The right mattress can be a solution. It can greatly reduce or completely eliminate neck pain by supporting all parts of the body and allowing for deep relaxation and a good night’s sleep. Better sleep lessens the perception of pain and a relaxed body can let go of tension.
Check with your doctor or chiropractor about the cause of your neck pain and possible treatment options while considering a new mattress to relieve your pain.
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