Guide: Best Tips & Mattress for Stomach Sleepers

Last Updated on September 14, 2020

by Marc Werner, Founder - Ghostbed

Are you a stomach sleeper? Only 7% of people sleep on their bellies, so you’re a rare breed.

Whether you fall asleep on your stomach and stay like that, or you’re more of a combo sleeper, finding the most comfortable position is the key to a great night of sleep. Your mattress and pillow can definitely contribute, as well.

Stomach sleepers in particular need to find the right mattress to keep them comfortable, as well as help them avoid some common aches and pains that come with the territory.

Keep reading as we explore mattress types and tips for sleeping soundly on your stomach.

Overview: Best Mattress Type for Stomach Sleepers

Our pick for the best mattress for stomach sleepers is a firm mattress with a good amount of support and pressure relief. If you like memory foam, a foam-latex mattress will offer a more supportive feel. If you prefer coils, look for a hybrid mattress that offers the best of both worlds.

I. What to Know About Sleeping On Your Stomach

II. Best Mattress for Stomach Sleepers

III. Extra Tips for Sleeping on Your Stomach

IV. GhostBed’s Mattress Pick for Stomach Sleepers

I. What to Know About Sleeping On Your Stomach

Stomach sleepers sometimes get a bad rap, but there are some benefits to this sleeping style.

Primarily, sleeping on your stomach can be great if you have digestive problems. This position can help reduce heartburn and reflux, as well as lower the risk of snoring and sleep apnea, since your throat and tongue won’t block your airway.

However, this position can be incredibly taxing on your back and neck, which we’ll get into further in the next section.

Is Sleeping on Your Stomach Really That Bad?

When you sleep on your stomach, the natural curve of your spine flattens out. With most of your body’s weight concentrated in the middle, this can put further pressure on your spine if you end up sinking into your mattress a bit. With your spine out of alignment, you may end up with pinched nerves and lower back pain.

Furthermore, sleeping with your head turned to one side for a long period can stretch and strain your neck muscles. Sleeping with a pillow that’s too full can make this even worse.

So does all of this mean you should train yourself to sleep in a different position? Not necessarily.

While it’s always smart to check with your doctor to get their advice, in many cases investing in the right mattress (and pillow!) can make a world of difference.

II. Best Mattress for Stomach Sleepers

The key to a great night of (pain-free) snoozing as a stomach sleeper is to keep your hips lifted and in line with your shoulders. Avoid mattresses that are too soft, leaving you sinking in and adding to the misalignment. A firm, sturdy and durable mattress is the best choice.

The firmness of a mattress is usually rated on a scale of 1 to 10. And while firmness can be subjective, anything from 5-7 is generally considered middle-of-the-road. You might see these mattresses labeled as “universal comfort,” meaning they’re great for pretty much everyone.

As a stomach sleeper, consider that 5-7 range your minimum to get the support you need. Keep your body weight in mind, too; if you’re on the heavier side, you’ll need a firmer mattress (closer to 6.5 or 7 on the scale) to prevent sinking.

On the mattress firmness scale, stomach sleepers should aim for a score between 5 and 7

Another element to consider is the support that your mattress provides. This refers to the way the mattress conforms and contours to your body, and varies depending on the materials used. A hybrid mattress that blends individual coils with memory foam will provide the most well-rounded support. Responsive latex combined with contouring memory foam is another great choice.

Avoid mattresses with too much cushion on the top layer (like a pillow top), as you’ll just end up sinking in more. And if you’re a hot sleeper, look for additional cooling elements like gel memory foam, cooling fabrics and individually-wrapped coils that allow for greater airflow.

III. Extra Tips for Sleeping on Your Stomach

  • Another way you can align your spine is by placing a pillow under your pelvis and hip area. This will take pressure off the spine, allowing your back to stay in a more natural position.
  • When you’re sleeping on your stomach, avoid bringing one leg up toward your side. This will twist your lower back and hips to an even more unnatural position.
  • Make sure to never use a thick pillow when stomach sleeping. A thinner pillow will keep your head relatively level. An adjustable memory foam pillow is an excellent choice for stomach sleepers because you can customize the fill, it will retain its shape well, and the foam will keep your head supported.

If you do want to train yourself to move from stomach sleeping to a healthier side position, invest in a few side or body pillows. Placing pillows next to your stomach will mimic the comfortable pressure you’re used to feeling, while adding pillows behind your back provides a bit of support.

IV. GhostBed’s Mattress Pick for Stomach Sleepers

So, which GhostBed mattress is best for stomach sleepers? All 4 options are in the ideal range of firmness, with the top 2 firmest choices being the original GhostBed and the GhostBed Flex.

The GhostBed’s layers of springy latex and gel memory foam offer cooling comfort, while the GhostBed Flex features individually-wrapped coils topped with gel memory foam and our exclusive GhostBounce layer. Both have a high-density base layer that provides ideal support, durability and longevity. Not too soft (like some memory foam mattress can be) but not too firm, GhostBed will keep your pressure points happy while keeping your spine aligned.

Compare them below and check out some of our helpful reviews:

The GhostBed GhostBed Flex
The GhostBed Layers Shop Now GhostBed Flex Layers Shop Now
Gel Memory Foam Hybrid: Individually-Wrapped Coils + Gel Memory Foam
From $545
As low as $35/mo
From $1145
As low as $69/mo
Medium-Firm (7 - 8 out of 10) Medium (6 - 7 out of 10)
Best Choice If...

- You have a limited budget—but don’t want to skimp on comfort or quality

- You need a mattress that’s soft yet supportive to alleviate back, neck or joint pain

- You want a bed that’s springy enough to move around on, but with minimal motion transfer so your partner doesn’t wake up when you move

- You’re making the switch from a traditional innerspring mattress

- You love the idea of supportive coils combined with comforting gel memory foam (the best of both worlds!)

- You want a mattress that contours to your body without making you feel “sunk in”

Sleeper Style

- All sleeper types: stomach, back, side and combo

- All sleeper types: stomach, back, side and combo

- Couples with slightly different comfort preferences

Compare All GhostBed Mattresses


Marc Werner - Founder, GhostBed

Marc Werner

Founder - GhostBed

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After undergoing three neck surgeries, Marc knew what it was like to live and sleep in constant pain. In 2001, after searching fruitlessly for a comfortable pillow and mattress that supported his neck and back ... Learn More

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