Adjustable bed experiences and recommendations
February 9, 2018 11:04 AM   Subscribe

We are going to buy a new bed. My wife spends 23 hours a day or more in bed. She has rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. We are looking for an adjustable bed, almost certainly with split king mattresses-- basically two long twin mattresses next to each other so each of us can have our own mattress and make adjustments independent of the other. What have your experiences with this type of bed been? Is there anything you would do differently? What advice and recommendations do you have?

As far as brands, in stores we have tested Tempurpedic and Oregon Mattress (a local company) and find them both acceptable. I can order (on sale, even with Presidents' Day) from the military exchange from the Serta line.

I have not tested Mattress Firm or Sleep Country USA because I assume from their TV ads that they are not good, or at least not good in what we are looking for. Is this wrong? Looks like all of what we want-- dual mattresses, adjustable frames, massage feature (for me, not her) that our total cost is around 4-8 thousand dollars. With that much expense, we aren't buying a headboard or foot board at this time, but want to in the future.

Right now I am tending toward Oregon Mattress, Serta or Tempurpedic because we can buy them from brick-and-mortar stores in our small town, and have them serviced here when they (inevitably?) break down. The wife wants to take advantage of military exchange sale to buy Serta.

We also have dogs, so a ramp or set of steps is also going to have to be added. Thank you for any advice you can offer.
posted by seasparrow to Health & Fitness (5 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
For what its worth, I have an adjustable bed which was LITERALLY the cheapest adjustable frame I could buy. I adjust it daily, multiple times, both the head and foot sections, and have had no issues with it whatsoever. Mine came from Leon's (Canada furniture sort of superstore), and it was their 'house brand' but I think it's also available on Amazon under a variety of names. If I could make any changes, I'd make the whole thing taller off the ground. The mattress I have was also dirt's a memory foam knockoff, and it hasn't lasted tremendously well, but it was cheap, so I'm not sore about replacing it 6-7 years out. If you wife spends that much time in bed, have you looked at a hospital style bed for her....the available features like better positioning, better pressure relief, air support mattress may be worthwhile. Depending on your insurance situation, you may even be able to get funding, and then purchase a bed which will fit neatly beside it for you. A rehab specialist or perhaps physiotherapist may have some recommendations, even in a non hospital style bed, and might be worth a quick ask before spending 8K on a bed. Sweet Dreams and good luck in the hunt for a perfect bed.
posted by Northbysomewhatcrazy at 11:25 AM on February 9, 2018 [1 favorite]

I had no problem paying more than the norm for a bed, I figure I spend more time in it than my car and will have it longer.

Last year I bought my second Sleep Number bed, I had the first one for 13 years (the new one is expected to last longer).

I bought a half split king and in the first 30 days had them replace it with the full split king. I found that I sometimes would adjust my side again in the middle of the night because I would raise it higher if I started coughing (allergies & post nasal drip, ewww!) It's been great to be able to do that, but with the half split bed my hubby would wake up when I adjusted it and now he doesn't when I adjust it with the full split bed. Also, every now and then he snores and doesn't stop when I touch him lightly so I use the partner snore setting which raises him up just a touch and he stops snoring.

The Sleep Number bed is air filled, the pump is a touch noisy but I set it to what I want when I first get in, and put it to 100% when I wake up so it's solid when I get out of bed.
I do adjust my side from moderate to softer when I can't sleep and it helps me get back to sleep quicker. Pre hip replacement with the old bed I would put it softer when I was aching.
My hubby tends not to adjust his at all, he likes a harder bed than I do.

We have an old house (pre-WWII) with small bedrooms so the king takes up the entire width of the room, I bought a stand alone bookcase headboard from Amazon to take the place of side tables and that has worked out well.

The only negative I really have is that it makes it hard to travel because hotel mattresses are generally hard and it's difficult to sleep when I don't have my own bed.
posted by IpsoFacto at 12:14 PM on February 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

With your wife's extreme needs, you should be trying out every possible option. Big bed chains do have many different kinds of mattresses on different platforms, although they may not have medical-supply types.

Your wife should also test some of the newer non-traditional mattresses, such as Purple. Check Mattress Firm; they have them in-store where we live, at least.
posted by sageleaf at 12:25 PM on February 9, 2018 [1 favorite]

I whole-heartedly second the Sleep Number recommendation. Her needs are so intense that having the ability to adjust the firmness will be just wonderful for her. I bought the basic one and put a memory foam topper on it. If you’ve ever looked inside one, the $$$ ones are the same as the $ ones- just that with the $$$ ones they put the memory foam on the inside. I prefer to change my foam out when it gets too worn so it didn’t make sense to spend the extra $$ on the more expensive one.
posted by PorcineWithMe at 12:31 PM on February 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

It's not clear from your message whether you want to adjust the mattress, or the frame, or both. What does your wife's physician suggest? What will bring the greatest relief?

As you can see from the responses, the Sleep Number bed has many fans. It may be what you need. You might want to investigate whether a Sleep Number mattress works that well in conjunction with an adjustable frame, though. For example, the mechanism inside the Sleep Number which provides the softness/firmness differential may not respond well to being bent by an adjustable frame.

Although there is probably a range of quality among adjustable frames, I would expect that a store that sells a high-end mattress would also offer a quality adjustable frame. Your metric for that might be warranty period.

Two other things to keep in mind. Adjustable frames are very heavy, typically requiring a two-man crew to manage and install. Also, you can usually purchase leg extenders for the frame which allow you to raise the mattress height an additional eight inches or so from the floor.

Adjustable frames offer relief for a variety of ailments. Whether they help your wife is a different question. Again, consult her physician.
posted by John Borrowman at 1:38 PM on February 9, 2018 [1 favorite]

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