A Mattress for Arthritis

I tossed and turned, the springs of my mattress jabbing into my hip bones, grinding against my joints. My shoulders buzzed with a lack of circulation. My neck ached and I spent several nights switching pillows. Nothing seemed to alleviate the discomfort and pain. I flipped over and heard the fated crack of a spring beneath the thin material…

I wandered through the store amid a forest of mattresses, pushing on fabric, peering at price tags and whispering to my partner. A salesperson offered his assistance, narrowing down our choices by leading us to a little pocket of softer mattresses, specially made for people who suffered with body pain. They were designed to be flexible and yielding on top, but offer firm support underneath. I lurked around one particular mattress, intrigued by its attractive qualities. My body sunk into its spongy surface; the mattress curled over my body, soothing my tender joints. I lay on my side with ease, enjoying the soft fabric against my skin. I happily introduced my credit card to our new bed set.

A week later, the store delivered our new bed. The workers leaned the mattress and box spring against my living room wall; their girth seemed to engulf half my apartment and blocked the light coming through my window. My partner and I would have the task of dragging them into the bedroom and placing both box spring and mattress into our frame – or more accurately, my partner would have that luxury.

It didn’t take long to put everything in its place. I gazed at our new bed…there was something peculiar about it…I couldn’t put my finger on it…something…I stepped closer and was surprised to see the mattress came up just above my waist – it was at least a foot taller than our last bed. I climbed up on it, with a slight bit of difficulty – I wondered how I would climb into it on the days when the old lady took possession of my joints. I looked around for a solution and located a small footstool I used when organizing the sweaters on a high shelf in my closet…it was the perfect step to boost me onto our new tall bed.

That night, I slipped under fresh sheets onto a comfortable mattress, and sunk into it’s comforting embrace.

No Comments

  1. Bob Grant on September 23, 2013 at 6:09 am

    Hi J.G.,

    Good to hear you’ve found a mattress that gives you a bit more support. Maybe too late for you, but in case any of your readers see this please have a look at memory foam mattresses. If your body needs support during sleep for any reason, arthritis, pack pain, etc., these are designed to mould to your body shape to give complete support whatever position you sleep in. I don’t think I’ve found anyone who would go back to a sprung mattress.

    I hope this helps,


    • J.G. Chayko on September 24, 2013 at 5:13 pm

      Hello Bob,

      Thanks for the suggestion. Another reader has also mentioned the benefits of a memory foam mattress.
      J.G. Chayko

  2. Wren on September 23, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Mmmmm, isn’t it nice to rest on a mattress that doesn’t hurt? I have a good one at my own home, but here at my mother’s place I use the guest bed. For the first three months or so I was miserable. Even with a good mattress I usually wake to stiff, sore joints, but this one, an extra-firm, rather old mattress was just awful. And of course, the pain interrupted my sleep. Finally, I bought a 4-inch-thick memory foam pad for the guest-room mattress. What a difference! Whew!

    I’m glad you were able to get a new mattress that soothes rather than aggravates. Sleep well! 🙂

  3. J.G. Chayko on September 23, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    Thanks Wren, it made a huge difference; it’s funny, I would never have bought a new mattress had it not been for arthritis. I would have made do with what I had.

  4. Irma on November 11, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    I know you wrote “comforting embrace.” But I read: comforting splendor, LOL! I guess that’s what I feel when I snuggle in my bed. And mine is high too. Too high to sit and bend over to tie my shoes.

    Don’t know how I missed this in my inbox. Could be all the emails that were backlogged 🙂

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J.G. Chayko is a writer, actress, and international arthritis advocate who’s been involved in theatre for more than 30 years and has published poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction.