You would think that a little background knowledge and a modicum of common sense would let most people know when it’s time to get a new bed. And yet so many of us hold onto our beds for too long. Is it a sentimental attachment, inertia, or are we just too busy to bother? A surprising number of patients with chronic back pain are guilty of this as well as people without back pain. Remember, you trust your mattress to support your spine for the third of your life that you spend on it. And also remember that just because you’re not in pain doesn’t mean that your back is not hurting. Pay attention to the mattress you are sleeping on, and make sure it is adequate to the task of properly supporting your back.
Know this: Most mattresses should last for approximately 10 years. However, depending on the quality of the mattress and how you treat it, the life-span may vary. When a mattress starts to sag in the middle, or a permanent impression of your body is left in the mattress, or it starts to sag to one partner’s side, it’s time to look for a new one. It’s also time to look for a new mattress if the edges of your mattress are no longer providing support, or if the seams of the mattress start to rip or tear. If you wake up with aches or pains, it may also be time to consider a new mattress.