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Adjustable Beds

An adjustable bed offers significant advantages over a flat bed in certain situations:

  • It can ease back pain, because the combination of a raised head and elevated /feet minimizes gaps between you and the mattress, which prevents your muscles from remaining in tension all night.
  • When combined with a heater/massager, the adjustable mattress can increase blood flow to the back and legs, which in turn can soothe aching muscles.
  • Elevating the legs can reduce swelling and edema (the pooling of fluids in the lower legs).
  • Keeping the head elevated improves air exchange and reduces snoring.
  • An adjustable bed can adjust to a comfortable position for watching TV.
  • An adjustable bed can reduce acid reflux and heartburn because an elevated upper body allows gravity to keep stomach acid from flowing up the esophagus.

Frame and Controls


Adjustable beds use an electric motor controlled by a remote control to position the head and foot of the bed. You will find that you will be adjusting the bed often. For example, you might raise the head high for reading and watching TV and then lower it a bit for sleeping. Better remote controls are wireless to avoid the potential of getting tangled in the cord. They also have illuminated controls that you can see at night if you need to adjust the bed or to lower the bed angle to make a trip to the bathroom.

The bed frame does the adjusting, and the mattress conforms along with it. Look for a frame that is sturdy and can support your mattress size and weight and verify that it provides the amount of lift you want. If you share the bed, make sure that both sides can be adjusted individually, which also requires separate mattresses and sheets.

Mattress Types

Mattresses can be traditional coil spring, or for the ultimate in comfort and conformity to your body as the bed adjusts, foam or slightly less expensive latex. Even if you choose coil spring, use a foam pad on top of at least two inches for better comfort. Mattress lengths for adjustable beds tend to be slightly longer to accomodate the bend and angles without forcing your feet off the end.

People who have moved to an adjustable bed usually love it and find it hard to go back. Just remember: water bed or air matresses and adjustable frames don't mix. So it you are accustomed to these bed types, an adjustable bed may take some getting used to.

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