If you’re ready to go to the mattress store, here are 5 tips that will help you negotiate the store and find the mattress that will give you a great night’s rest.


Be ready to lie down

Seriously, patting the bed or stretching out for just a minute or two isn’t enough. Experts recommend that you spend at least 10 minutes on a bed and up to 20 minutes. Humans move in their sleep – you may go to sleep in one position and wake up in another. Actually, humans move 40 to 60 times in the night. So, when you are trying out a new bed, be sure that you try out the different ways you sleep – left side, right side, stomach and/or back. Don’t be embarrassed. If you find it a bit awkward, simply tell the salesperson that you want to try out several beds on your own so he or she isn’t standing over you.


Get comfortable

Part of being able to test a bed is being dressed correctly. You’re not going to feel comfortable at all if you’re in your business suit or a short skirt and heels. Try to mimic the clothes you sleep in – something easy to move in that’s a loose fit. Think jogging or yoga pants and a T-shirt. Shoes with socks are a plus because you’ll want to take off those shoes. Dress for success – successful mattress buying!


Know a little about mattresses, their comfort and how you sleep

If you are a side sleeper you want a mattress that relieves pressure from the heavier body parts – shoulders and hips. Think slightly softer with a little sink. Back sleepers need to support the lower back. A good choice is medium. It will support the spine but not push it out of alignment. Stomach sleepers tend to be more comfortable on firm mattresses. Then, know what’s available – a whole new world of mattresses. There’s Memory foam which gives full body support with some sink. Latex or latex alternative foam beds also offer a full-body support but with less sink and more bounce. Innerspring mattresses are constructed with different layers. The support comes from the springs – the comfort level can range from soft to firm depending on the construction.


Pay attention to your spine

You want your spine to remain aligned. If you are a side-sleeper you want your back to be straight; if you sleep on your back, you want to maintain the natural curve of your spine.


Do I like the “look” of the mattress, and what does it cost?

Pretty shouldn’t be a consideration. You’re going to cover it up. What is important is how it feels and how it supports you. Think the price through – if a couple buys a mattress that costs $1000 that breaks down to $0.14 a night per person over a 10-year lifespan. A $5000 mattress is $0.70 a night per person. That’s less than you spend on a cup of coffee.


The final word – shop at a mattress store that has expert sleep professionals to help you find the right mattress. You want a store that has a full selection of the different types of construction. Ask questions. Expect good answers and explanations. Go dressed to rest. Take your time – try out each mattress by stretching out and relaxing for as long as it takes to feel like you’ve found the mattress that is perfect for you.


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