It has been said so many times by so many people that it’s assumed to be true: the best mattress for lower back pain is one that’s firm or extra-firm. In fact, one group of researchers claims that three out of four orthopedic surgeons recommend such a sleeping surface for their patients.

What many people don’t know is that this is still a subject of debate among medical professionals. For example, chiropractors have long said that the best mattresses conform to the natural shape of the person’s spine and hips. Ones that are as stiff as a board, on the other hand, actually do more harm than good by pushing the back out of place.

Now a study done in Spain may have settled this question once and for all. Researchers replaced the sleeping surfaces of 331 back pain patients with brand new mattresses. Half of them got firm ones; the other half received ones of medium hardness. None of the participants knew what kind they had received.

When the results came in, researchers were amazed. By a margin of two to one, those who slept on the softer surfaces reported greater relief from back pain than those who used the harder mattresses. An article on the study was published in the British medical journal Lancet.

George McClelland, a spokesman for the American Chiropractic Association, welcomed the news. “Traditionally, what we have recommended is that a moderately-firm works best,” he said in an interview. “It’s wonderful to be validated by some form of research.”

While McClelland warns against using a hard sleeping surface, he was also quick to caution back pain sufferers against going too far the other way. He and other spine experts recommend that the best mattress for lower back pain is supportive yet has some give to it.

Here at Parklane Mattresses you’ll find a huge selection of mattresses, with different firmness levels and made of a variety of materials. Whether you’re looking for back pain relief or simply better rest, we can match you up with the sleeping surface of your dreams. Talk to us today.