The pillow top mattress is making its way onto the market with fairly good reception. It offers individuals an extra measure of comfort over standard mattresses because it adds a very soft and comfortable layer to the top of the mattress. Typically the pillow top mattress is an innerspring mattress rather than a foam or air mattress. 

It stands to reason when you consider that many of the properties found in a pillow top are part of foam and air mattresses by design. That’s not to say you’ll never find foam or air pillow top mattress; sometimes, you will. Let’s take a look at some of the factors that will help you buy the best mattress using a pillow top and pillow for back pain.  


The Pillow Top Concept 

The two most important criteria when choosing a mattress are firmness and overall comfort. Of the two, firmness is probably more important because it will have long-term consequences on a user’s health. A mattress that is too soft will not provide adequate back support, which could result in mild to severe back pain. On the other hand, a mattress that is too firm can cause pain in the shoulders and hips, and exacerbate conditions like arthritis. 

The pillow top helps because it allows users to err on the side of firmness. In other words, you could purchase a mattress that ended up being slightly too firm but use a pillow top to mitigate firmness issues. The pillow top acts as a very soft and cushioning layer usually made up of something like latex, wool, or even feathers. Pillow-top covers come in a variety of thicknesses and standard sizes to accommodate most mattresses. Keep in mind that European size classifications are not the same as Americans.  

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Try Before You Buy 

If you’re thinking of replacing an old mattress with a new pillow top model, you might want to spend a little money on a pillow top cover for your old mattress and see how well it helps. The fact is, the only difference between a pillow top mattress and a standard mattress is that it comes with a pillow top cover. But since you can purchase these covers as stand-alone items, it might be wise to see how well they work for you before investing your money in a brand-new pillow-top mattress.  

In the event that you do decide to purchase a new mattress, you’ll have an extra pillow top on hand when the one that comes with the bed wears out. And make no mistake, pillow top mattress covers do wear out long before the mattress itself. If you hold onto your mattress for a full 20 years, you probably have to replace your pillow top 3 to 4 times within that time frame. 

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The Pillow Top and Inner Springs 

As previously stated, most pillow-top mattresses are of innerspring construction. Due to the fact that innerspring mattresses cause pressure points, they are the perfect candidate for pillow top mattress toppers. The added softness and cushioning they provide protect the individual from those pressure points — at least until both mattress and pillow top begin to degrade. As a general rule, you should look for mattresses with as many springs as possible. A larger number of springs will mean better weight distribution and more comfort for the user. 

If you’re choosing a latex foam mattress or even a newer air foam mattress, you might find the pillow top option available, as well. While foam mattresses tend to be free of pressure points, they can be a little too firm at the surface for the tastes of many sleepers. For them, the foam construction itself isn’t that big a problem, but the lack of softness might be. That’s a perfect scenario in which a pillow top option is ideal. A pillow top cover on a memory foam mattress, on the other hand, is probably a bad move.

When shopping for a pillow top mattress, the same selection criteria apply. Take the time to lie on several mattresses for an extended period of time so you can see how your body will react. Also, be careful to pay attention to warranties, return policies, and so forth. The last thing you want to do is end up with a mattress you can’t live with, only to find that you have trouble returning it and getting your money back.

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