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A Mattress for large people with back problems.

Amy writes:

We are truly desperate to find a comfortable mattress. We moved 2 years ago and finally got a king-sized bed, but we have been unable to find a comfortable mattress to go on it.
Our first choice was a firm Simmons that hurt our backs terribly. We now have a plush pillow top Simmons that is so soft it is hard to sit up in it or roll over and is destroying my back.
My husband is 6’2”, 275#. I am 5’4”, 300#. He has chronic back issues while I only have back issues related to sleeping. I also have sleep apnea. He is much more tolerant to various sleeping surfaces than I am.
I have read your responses to other folks in our position and it seems you are mostly recommending a Beautyrest Black mattress or one of your flippable mattresses with a latex topper. How would I decide which model of either line to get? Is it worth trying to test one of the Beautyrests in a store if it doesn’t have the latex topper?
You also sometimes recommend a full latex mattress. What are the pros and cons of that vs the setup above?
We currently have a platform bed – just always found box springs to be unnecessary. What is your opinion on the necessity of box springs?
Another issue at the moment is that our bed is much too high. It is impossible to sit on. We’ve discussed cutting down the legs of the bed frame – is that the only option? Or should we switch to a box spring/mattress combination with no frame? I’m not sure how high the various combinations are.
Finally, we have used the “comfort guarantee” to return a mattress before. The replacement was unfortunately even worse than the original one! But it is hard to spend thousands of dollars with no idea what it’s going to be like.
I appreciate your website and your time!
Hi Amy,

I don’t see how you can place any value on a comfort guarantee when the resulting choice was worse than your first choice. It should be painfully clear, that neither you nor your salesperson knows what to do….all terribly worthless when used as part of a guessing game. Here is my position on that. Guarantees

Had you simply gotten a nice soft layer of latex to put on your first mattress, you wouldn’t be writing to me now.
Boxsprings: In the past, a boxspring was an integral part of a sleep system. That hasn’t been true for many years. Now, boxsprings are cheaply made, with their only value being to hold the mattress up at convenient height for you to get in and out.
For durability, there is nothing that comes close to the Therapedic Medi-Coil Ultimate Permatuft Two-sided mattress….with my heaviest customers using it at 500+ lbs.
Add a latex topper to that and you will be well supported with a comfortable sleeping surface for many years.
Both, shown here:
Therapedic Medi-Coil Ultimate Permatuft Firm

Therapedic Medi-Coil Ultimate Permatuft Firm

Latex Foam Mattress Topper

Latex Mattress Topper

The base support of that mattress is quite rigid, using the old fashioned large heavy coils that had been the work horse of the industry for many decades.
My concern with that mattress is for your comfort. Being a female an having your 300 lbs. concentrated into a 64″ frame, I worry that the base support of the Medi-Coil will never provide the comfort you need…even with a latex topper.
While not as durable, The Simmons Beatyrest Black Alexia Extra Firm strikes me as a better fit for you. The coils move independently, which means better contouring to your body and a lot less motion felt between you when each of you moves. Add a latex topper to that and you will have a better sleeping experience.
An all latex mattress has been considered the very best mattress you can own, supplying a quality of sleep that cannot be had any other way.
And while all this is true, it isn’t true for everyone. No mattress is right for everyone.
When back problems are involved, coupled with heavy body weight, the push back support that latex provides, isn’t enough.
For large people with disc problems, a strong firm innerspring mattress works best.
Here is a link to the Simmons Beautyrest Black Alexia mattress:
The final price will be 10% than the price shown. Delivery is free for all of our products and there’s no sales tax.
Simmons Beautyrest Black Alexia Extra Firm Mattress

Simmons Beautyrest Black Alexia Extra Firm

Thanks, Pete

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