You probably sleep in a nice, comfortable bed every night. But some people choose not to.
Sleeping on the floor is popular for people who prefer a minimalist lifestyle. Claims are made that a soft mattress is bad for your spine and posture and that sleeping on the floor is a much healthier option.
But is there any truth to these claims?
Why a Soft Bed Might Be Harmful
If your mattress is too soft, you might not be doing your body a favor.
A soft mattress can also cause you to sink too deeply into it, leading to poor posture and spine alignment. It won’t provide the necessary support for your hips, spine, and neck.
This can lead to lower back, neck, and shoulder pain.
A bed that’s too soft may also cause you to roll into an uncomfortable position and put excess strain on your muscles and joints.
By provoking these painful issues, a soft bed can negatively impact your quality of life and prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.
Additionally, a soft bed can make it challenging to get in and out of, which can be dangerous for people with mobility issues.
Is it Better to Sleep on the Hard Floor?
So if soft mattresses are not too great, what about the opposite circumstance?
Floor-sleeping practitioners say it’s much healthier to sleep on a hard, flat surface.
They claim that sleeping on the floor helps improve your posture and can prevent or even treat back pain. Sometimes it will even be claimed that it can help increase circulation and improve your digestion.
While there may be a rational argument for sleeping on the floor, there is not much evidence to support these claims.
Sleeping on a solid surface may lead to increased back and neck pain due to the hard contact with the floor. Sleeping on the floor can be quite uncomfortable if you’re not used to it, and it may make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep.
Another potential issue is the presence of dust and other allergens on the floor. These can trigger asthma and allergy symptoms, irritating your respiratory system and making it difficult to breathe properly.
Floor sleeping can also be problematic for older adults or people with mobility issues. It can be difficult to get up and down from the floor, and there’s added risk of injury if you slip or fall.
The Happy Medium
The best option for most people appears to be a medium-firmness mattress—not too hard or soft. Even better if you can adjust it to your individual preference.
It should provide enough support for your spine and hips but not be so hard that it’s noticeably uncomfortable or disruptive.