When my daughter transitioned from crib to toddler bed we used the same crib mattress. Outgrowing the toddler bed around age 5, we replaced it with a twin-sized mattress and foundation. We didn’t buy anything fancy, just the least expensive model on hand. She loved it for about a year. She began complaining of back pain. A 5-year-old with back pain is not exactly normal.
After a few months of light massage her complaints didn’t stop. Her back hurt first thing in the morning. Her neck began to bother her, too. I told my husband we should change her mattress. We had a full-size pillow top mattress with support in our guest bedroom. One day we put the full-size deluxe model in her bedroom. She loved it, of course! She jumped around on it for a week!
After sleeping on the better mattress for a week she stopped complaining of back pain. She no longer told me her neck hurt. Getting up at bedtime stopped. She slept very well. While it may seem silly to buy an expensive mattress for your child it might be a good idea to think about the benefits of buying a better mattress.
Think about it: when you shop for a mattress you try to buy the most comfortable one you can afford. You look at support, springs, softness/firmness, comfort, then price. You know how valuable a good night’s rest is for your mind and body. Why should we give our children less?
You don’t have to buy a mattress as expensive as your own. Children don’t weigh as much as adults. Kids don’t have the same back or arthritis problems. Most furniture stores have a mid-level priced mattress line. Typically the least expensive mattress has the least support. You want a mattress that provides support. Some have pillow tops, some don’t. Pillow tops are just one preference. You may prefer a firm mattress. Bring your child shopping with you since he will be the one sleeping on it. Don’t forget to buy a mattress protector. These protect against bathroom accidents and spills. Most mattress companies won’t honor warranties if there are stains.
Look for signs of poor/uncomfortable sleep: gets up in the night, can’t get comfortable at bed time, complains of certain body aches, irritability, tiredness, changes in behavior. If you think your child isn’t resting well ask him if he’s comfortable. Take a nap in her bed to see how you feel in it. Help your child have better days by making sure he/she has good nights.