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Gastroesophageal reflux disease, also known as GERD or acid reflux, is a condition characterized by stomach acid washing into the esophagus. Acid reflux can cause serious damage to the esophageal lining and may also lead to heartburn and other forms of discomfort – particularly after consuming a meal. People with acid reflux commonly experience sleep problems, as well.
Bedding and sleep conditions are critical for those living with acid reflux. Most experts advise people with this disease to sleep on their sides; sleeping on the back can aggravate GERD and lead to more reflux, while stomach sleeping often causes inordinate neck and back pain. As a result, most people with acid reflux find that mattresses designed to support side sleepers are the best option. These mattresses cushion the shoulders, hips, and other areas of the body in order to align the spine with the pelvis and minimize pressure points.
Read on to learn more mattress tips and recommendations for people with acid reflux, including our picks for the top five mattresses sold today. Our choices are based on verified customer and owner experiences, as well as intensive product research and analysis.
Our Editor’s Pick is the Avocado Green, an eco-friendly latex hybrid mattress that provides excellent support for people with acid reflux and other side sleepers. The Avocado Green is available in two firmness options, ‘Medium’ (5.5 on the 1-10 firmness scale) and ‘Medium Firm’ (6.5); this selection accommodates most sleepers in the average weight group (130 to 230 pounds) and heavy weight group (more than 230 pounds).
The mattress features comfort layers of organic New Zealand wool and natural Dunlop latex, which conform closely to the sleeper’s body without absorbing too much body heat or feeling excessively hot. The Avocado Green is also constructed with a transitional natural latex layer and a support core made of pocketed coils, which provide great reinforcement and help maintain an even sleep surface. Additionally, the mattress isolates motion transfer very well and produces minimal noise, making it a good option for couples.
Avocado ships mattresses anywhere in the U.S. free of charge. Customers may also choose White Glove delivery – which includes in-home mattress assembly and old mattress removal – for an additional charge. The Avocado Green is backed by a 365-night sleep trial and a 20-year warranty.
Although preferences vary by weight, most side sleepers prefer mattresses that are ‘Medium Firm.’ This setting offers a balance of pressure-relieving softness and bodily support needed for this sleep position. The Nectar mattress offers a ‘Medium Firm’ (6) surface that is suitable for the majority of side sleepers, including those with conditions like acid reflux that often require exclusive side sleeping. The bed also isolates motion and is virtually silent when bearing weight.
The Nectar mattress is designed with a layers of gel memory foam and standard memory foam in the comfort system, as well as two layers of high-density polyfoam in the support core. This four-tier design provides excellent cushioning and pressure relief while ensuring the sleep surface remains even and supportive. The Nectar’s cover is made from cotton and lyocell, which are cooler and more breathable than fabrics like polyester.
The Nectar’s below-average price-point also makes it a high-value mattress. Customers anywhere in the contiguous U.S. qualify for free shipping when they order a Nectar mattress, which is backed by a 365-night sleep trial – much longer than average – and a 10-year warranty.
The EcoCloud Mattress from Winkbeds is a 13″ latex hybrid bed that comes in a single firmness – Medium (5). The mattress is designed with comfort layers of organic wool and natural Talalay latex, as well as a tencel and wool cover. These breathable materials sleep very cool, while the latex offers close conforming and great pressure relief. The support core, made from individually pocketed coils, helps the bed maintain a comfortable sleep surface.
Latex is also highly durable, giving the EcoCloud mattress a longer expected lifespan. Other key strengths of EcoCloud mattress include good motion isolation and edge support. EcoCloud mattresses have above-average price-points compared to other mattresses, and are a good pick for shoppers with bigger budgets.
Winkbeds offers a 120-night sleep trial as well as free shipping or white glove delivery for a small fee. All Winkbeds mattresses are also backed by a lifetime warranty, which is much longer than the average mattress warranty.
The Helix Moonlight is part of the innovative hybrid series Helix Sleep unveiled last year. Like other models in the collection, the Moonlight is constructed with a comfort layer of soft polyfoam, a foam transitional layer, and a pocketed coil support core reinforced with a high-density foam base. The mattress is considered ‘Soft’ (3.5), making it ideal for people with acid reflux who weigh less than 130 pounds, along with other side sleepers in this weight group.
The Helix Moonlight’s thick foam support layers provide strong reinforcement throughout the entire bed, which prevents the sleep surface from sagging excessively and minimizes sinkage along the edges. The mattress also circulates air well through the coil layer, which helps keep the bed fairly cool throughout the night. Other benefits include better-than-average motion isolation and minimal noise when bearing weight.
The Helix Moonlight qualifies for free standard delivery anywhere in the U.S. The mattress is also backed by a 100-night sleep trial and a lifetime warranty.
Because most people with acid reflux must continually sleep on their side, a mattress that will provide proper support and spinal alignment is important. The Loom & Leaf by Saatva is a great pick for sleepers weighing 130 to 230 pounds due in part to its firmness selection; the mattress is available in ‘Medium’ (5.5) and ‘Firm’ (8) options, which should accommodate nearly all side sleepers weighing 130 pounds or more.
The Loom & Leaf also conforms closely with comfort layers of gel memory foam and standard memory foam. As a result, the bed will alleviate pain and pressure to a significant extent. Unlike many all-foam beds, the Loom & Leaf absorbs minimal body heat and sleeps fairly cool; this is largely due to its organic-cotton cover. The mattress also minimizes motion transfer very well and is virtually silent when bearing weight.
Like other mattresses from Saatva, the Loom & Leaf qualifies for free White Glove delivery anywhere in the contiguous U.S.; most competitors will charge customers an additional fee of at least $100 for this service. The mattress is backed by a 120-night sleep trial and a 15-year warranty, as well.
Unveiled in 2018, the Purple Hybrid– like the Purple Mattress – is constructed with the unique ‘Smart Grid’ comfort system that consists of buckling-column gel dispersed throughout an elastic polymer grid. This layer hugs the body closely to align the spine and alleviate pressure points in sleepers, much like memory foam, but the polymers do not deteriorate as quickly and the Purple Hybrid’s expected lifespan is much longer than most all-foam beds.
The Purple Hybrid also sleeps exceptionally cool. This is due to good airflow through the ‘Smart Grid’ and the pocketed coil support core. The mattress comes in an 11-inch profile and a ‘Medium Firm’ (6.5) firmness setting, making it suitable for most average and heavyweight sleepers and back sleepers of all weights, though lightweight side and stomach sleepers may find it too firm. The purple Hybrid carries a higher-than-average cost, making the Purple Hybrid a good pick for shoppers with bigger budgets.
Purple will ship this mattress anywhere in the contiguous U.S. at no extra cost. The Purple Hybrid is backed by a 100-night sleep trial and a 10-year warranty.
Acid reflux is the primary symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition that affects roughly 20% of the U.S. population. Acid reflux occurs when stomach acid enters the esophagus, which connects the mouth to the stomach. This backwash can seriously damage stomach lining and may lead to severe discomfort — particularly after evening meals. As a result, people who regularly experience acid reflux often have a hard time falling and staying asleep.
Sleep experts have noted that people who sleep flat on their backs with minimal head support are most susceptible to acid reflux during the night. One potential solution to this issue is an adjustable bed base that allows the sleeper to elevate their head. However, it’s important to note that some mattresses are better suited for adjustable beds than others.
This guide will explore the best mattress choices for sleepers with acid reflux who use an adjustable bed. Below you’ll find some general information about the causes and symptoms of acid reflux, tips for first-time mattress buyers, and our top mattress model picks for sleepers who experience GERD on a regular basis.
According to the Mayo Clinic, frequent acid reflux often leads to GERD. The root cause of most acid reflux cases is a weakened esophageal sphincter, the ring of soft muscle that relaxes when you eat and drink, and then closes when you finish. Weak esophageal sphincters can allow stomach acid to flow into the esophagus, which can lead to the following symptoms:
People who experience acid reflux should consider seeing a physician if their GERD episodes become more severe and/or more frequent, or if they take heartburn medication more than twice per week. Over time, GERD and severe acid reflux can lead to the following complications:
Most people experience acid reflux occasionally. People with GERD typically report at least one or two reflux incidents per week, while those with mild to severe acid reflux usually experience one incident per week. Certain risk factors can lead to more frequent reflux, such as:
Next, let’s look at how acid reflux affects sleep — and effective measures people with acid reflux can take in order to get a good night’s sleep.
People with GERD or acid reflux often experience sleep disruption due to the following factors:
Additionally, GERD has been linked to sleep apnea, a condition characterized by temporary loss of breath while sleeping. The most common form of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea (or OSA), occurs when a physical obstruction hinders air circulation in the breathing passages. Many people with OSA experience frequent heavy snoring, but the condition has been linked to more serious conditions such as cancer and chronic heart disease.
Numerous sleep studies have revealed that certain measures can effectively reduce the symptoms of acid reflux, as well as minimize snoring for people with OSA. These measures include:
For many people with acid reflux, adjustable beds make a world of difference. Adjustable beds allow sleepers to elevate the head of their bed, which (as we’ve discussed) can help prevent both snoring and acid reflux symptoms. Many adjustable beds can also be raised or lowered at the foot, which can aid sleepers with poor circulation.
Not all mattresses are compatible with adjustable beds. When shopping for a mattress that will be used with an adjustable bed, here are a few factors to take into account:
Here are a few key questions to ask when shopping for a new mattress to be used with an adjustable bed: