How Thick Should My Mattress Be?

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There is no easy answer to this question, and if you have already taken a look at my page on firmness it’s easy to understand how knowing what thickness to buy can be just as confusing.

Of course, I’m all about memory foam mattresses because I think they are the way forward if you want the ultimate in comfort overnight. However, there is one rule that everyone should consider even if you don’t think a memory foam mattress is what you need right now.


It goes without saying the more you weigh, the more support you will need while you sleep. However, although you will need to find a thicker mattress if you weigh more than average for your build, you still have to take into account how firm you like your bed to be.

If you like a really soft mattress beneath you, it’s best to go for the thickest you can find and reduce this depending on how firm you like your bed to be.

General Health

If you suffer from general aches and pains, the thickness of the mattress you choose can have an effect on this. But if you’re under medical care for various back, shoulder neck or joint troubles it is best to check with your doctor before you decide to go ahead and buy a new mattress.

Of course, the more support you need can determine how thick a mattress you sleep on should be. Basically, as with weight the thicker the mattress, the softer it will be.

Food for Thought on Memory Foam Mattresses

I would like to clear up one little “niggle” here. Some memory foam mattresses can be as thin as 6 inches or as thick as 13 to 14 inches. However don’t think that just because you buy say, a 12 inch foam mattress, this is the amount of memory foam you have.

Whilst some manufacturers are very good at outlining the actual amount of memory foam you have, others are not. How much you wish to spend does come into account because the more memory foam included with a mattress will determine this. Having said that, I have some reviews on mattresses that are very reasonably priced yet offer enough support to help with various aches and pains.

For instance, most mattresses like this will have a layer of base foam which is where most of the support occurs, a layer of memory foam, and a layer of high-density foam on top. To make it easier, the more memory foam you have, the softer your mattress will be, which (as I have said) is important to know if you’re heavier than average or if you need specialist support when you sleep.

There are other permeations to think about as well. For instance, some memory foam mattresses will incorporate layers that help keep you cool. The reason for this is this type of mattress is well known for reacting to your body temperature so it can conform to your shape, which in turn can create more heat while you sleep.

Overall it’s Your Choice

Knowing that a thicker mattress will generally have a softer feel for most people of average weight is useful. However, as you can see from the information above just like choosing the right firmness of the mattress, the thickness is also to some degree a personal choice. The perfect scenario is to combine how firm you would like your foam mattress to be with a thickness that will also suit your needs.

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