How To Elevate Mattress For Acid Reflux?

Elevate Mattress for Acid Reflux: Your Step-by-Step Guide

Acid reflux, a condition where stomach acid moves up into the esophagus, can often be managed by making dietary and lifestyle changes. One common and effective way to alleviate the symptoms, particularly during sleep, is to elevate the head of your mattress. Elevating the mattress helps to keep the acid in the stomach and prevents it from flowing back into the esophagus, thereby reducing the discomfort and potential damage caused by acid reflux.

Understanding Acid Reflux

Before diving deep into how to elevate your mattress, it’s important to understand what acid reflux is and why elevating the mattress can help. Acid reflux occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter, a muscle ring at the bottom of your esophagus, doesn’t close properly or opens too often. This condition allows stomach acid to rise into the esophagus, leading to symptoms like heartburn, regurgitation, and discomfort.

Several factors can contribute to acid reflux, including diet, obesity, smoking, pregnancy, and certain medications. By elevating the head of your mattress, you use gravity to your advantage. Gravity helps to keep stomach contents from rising into the esophagus, thereby reducing the symptoms of acid reflux and promoting a more restful sleep.

Methods to Elevate Your Mattress

There are various methods to elevate your mattress, each with its own benefits and drawbacks. Selecting the best method depends on your preferences, budget, and the severity of your acid reflux.

Adjustable Beds

One of the most effective and convenient ways to elevate your mattress is by using an adjustable bed. Adjustable beds come with a motorized base that allows you to raise and lower the head and sometimes the foot of the bed. This feature can be particularly useful for those who need a precise and adjustable elevation to manage their acid reflux.

Adjustable beds offer several benefits, such as:
– **Ease of Adjustment**: You can change the elevation with just a push of a button.
– **Customization**: Fine-tune the angle to find the perfect position that alleviates your symptoms.
– **Additional Features**: Many adjustable beds come with additional features like massage functions, USB ports, and memory settings.

However, adjustable beds can be quite expensive, ranging from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. They may also require some assembly and could be heavier and bulkier than traditional beds.

Wedge Pillows

A cost-effective alternative to an adjustable bed is a wedge pillow. Wedge pillows are triangular-shaped cushions designed to elevate the upper body. They are typically made of foam and come in varying degrees of incline.

The advantages of using a wedge pillow include:
– **Affordability**: Generally, wedge pillows are much cheaper than adjustable beds.
– **Portability**: They are easy to move and can be placed on any mattress.
– **Versatility**: Wedge pillows can also be used for other purposes, such as reading or watching TV in bed.

However, wedge pillows may not provide the same level of comfort and adjustability as an adjustable bed. Some people may find them too firm or too steep, making it hard to get comfortable.

Using Bed Risers

If you prefer not to use a wedge pillow or purchase an adjustable bed, bed risers can be an effective solution. Bed risers are usually made of sturdy plastic or wood and are placed under the legs of the bed to lift it off the ground at the head end.

The benefits of using bed risers include:
– **Cost-Effectiveness**: Bed risers are relatively inexpensive.
– **Ease of Installation**: They are simple to set up and do not require significant effort.
– **Space-Saving**: By raising your bed, you can also create additional storage space underneath.

It’s essential to ensure that the bed risers are firmly in place and can support the weight of the bed and occupants. Unstable bed risers could lead to safety issues.

DIY Solutions

For those who enjoy do-it-yourself projects, there are several homemade methods to elevate your mattress. These methods can be customized to fit your needs and are usually budget-friendly.

One common DIY method is to place a sturdy object, such as wood blocks or bricks, under the legs of the bed at the head end. Another option is to place a foam wedge or rolled-up towel between the mattress and box spring to create an incline.

Top 5 Mattresses Recommended By

While DIY solutions can be cost-effective and customizable, they also come with potential drawbacks. Ensuring stability and safety is crucial, as makeshift solutions might not provide the same support as commercial products.

Important Considerations

When choosing how to elevate your mattress, consider the following factors to ensure that you select the best solution for your needs.

Degree of Elevation

The ideal elevation for reducing acid reflux symptoms is typically between 6 to 8 inches. Elevating the bed too much can cause discomfort, while too little elevation might not provide significant relief. Experiment with different heights to find the elevation that works best for you.

Comfort Level

Comfort is an essential aspect to consider, especially if you have a partner sharing the bed. A solution that is comfortable for one person might not be suitable for another. Adjustable beds offer the highest degree of customization but consider how changes might affect your partner.


Your budget will play a significant role in determining the best method to elevate your mattress. Adjustable beds are the most expensive option, while wedge pillows and bed risers are more affordable. DIY solutions can be even cheaper but may require some effort and creativity.

Health and Safety

Ensure that whatever method you choose is stable and safe. Unstable bed frames or poorly supported bed risers can lead to accidents. If you’re using a wedge pillow, make sure it provides adequate support and does not cause strain on your back or neck.

Material Durability

Consider the durability of the materials used in your chosen method. Adjustable beds are built to last but come with a higher initial cost. Wedge pillows can wear out over time, especially if they are made from lower-quality foam. Bed risers should be made from sturdy materials like heavy-duty plastic or wood to ensure they last long and can support the weight of the bed.

Additional Tips for Managing Acid Reflux

Elevating your mattress is one effective strategy, but it’s essential to combine it with other lifestyle changes to manage acid reflux effectively.

Dietary Changes

Avoid foods and beverages that can trigger acid reflux. Common culprits include:
– Spicy foods
– Fatty or fried foods
– Citrus fruits and juices
– Onions and garlic
– Caffeinated drinks
– Alcohol
– Chocolate

Eating smaller, more frequent meals rather than large meals can also help to keep acid reflux at bay.

Weight Management

Excess weight can put pressure on your stomach, causing acid to move up into your esophagus. Maintaining a healthy weight through regular exercise and a balanced diet can significantly reduce acid reflux symptoms.

Quitting Smoking

Smoking can weaken the lower esophageal sphincter, making it easier for stomach acid to rise into the esophagus. Quitting smoking can help improve the function of this muscle and reduce acid reflux.

Timing of Meals

Avoid eating large meals close to bedtime. Aim to have your last meal at least 2-3 hours before going to bed to give your stomach enough time to digest the food and reduce the risk of acid reflux.

Clothing Choices

Wearing loose-fitting clothes can help reduce pressure on your stomach, decreasing the likelihood of acid reflux. Tight clothes, especially around the abdomen, can squeeze the stomach and push acid upwards into the esophagus.

Finishing Thoughts

Elevating your mattress is a practical and effective way to reduce the discomfort caused by acid reflux, promoting better sleep quality and overall health. Whether you opt for an adjustable bed, a wedge pillow, bed risers, or a DIY solution, it’s essential to find the method that works best for you. By combining mattress elevation with other lifestyle changes, you can manage acid reflux more effectively and enjoy a more restful sleep.

Remember to consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice, particularly if you have severe or persistent symptoms. Doing so ensures you receive the appropriate treatment and support tailored to your specific needs. With the right approach, you can take control of acid reflux and live a more comfortable life.


  • Aiden Lawrence

    I'm Aiden Lawrence, a certified Sleep Science Coach and senior editor of GoodSleepHub, proud parent of two amazing kids, and a pet lover with a cat and a dog. Join me as we explore the world of sweet dreams and comfy pillows. Let's make bedtime the highlight of your day!

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