How Do I Fix My Sagging Mattress?

Written by
Purple Staff
Last Updated
September 8, 2022
min read

If you've been experiencing a sinking feeling in your mattress, don't worry – you're not alone. A lot of people find that their mattresses start to sag over time. Not only is this problem annoying, but it can also cause a whole spate of health issues down the line, such as lower back pain and insomnia.

Fortunately, there are some simple things you can do to fix the problem and prevent a mattress from sagging prematurely. 

But before we answer the question “how do you fix a dip in a mattress?”, let’s take a closer look at what makes mattresses sag in the first place. 

looking for a new mattress? Purple offers a variety of mattresses for all sleeping positions and body types. Purples Gelflex Grid is firm enough to support you. While providing the comfort you need. 

Why Do Mattresses Sag?

There are several reasons why a mattress may sag. The three main reasons are:

Sleeping Preferences

Do you have a favorite side? Do you sleep with a partner or a pet that has a particular spot that they love? Sleeping in the same spot day in and day out can affect how quickly a mattress sags. If you prefer to sleep on your side, you could also be applying too much pressure on certain spots than others. 

Poor Support

Using an old or flimsy box spring or bed frame could lead to a mattress sagging, especially if the box spring or bed frame can no longer support the weight of the mattress. 

Wear And Tear

Sagging is, unfortunately, just a normal part of a mattress’ life cycle. It happens slowly over time, as you (and your partner) apply pressure to the foam layers every night. This pressure causes the foam to soften and gradually lose the buoyancy and support it used to provide. 

For innerspring and hybrid mattresses, sagging can also happen when the metal coils lose their tension after years of use.

What Does Sagging Feel Like And Where Does It Usually Occur? 

You’ll know what it feels like when you encounter it. A sagging/sinking mattress feels like it has an uneven spot or a dip in the center, particularly where your hips and shoulders come into contact with the mattress the most. 

How Do You Fix A Sunken Mattress?

You can’t exactly undo the damage that’s already been done. But there are some things you can do to minimize sagging and help you sleep more comfortably, despite your mattress starting to sink.

Rotate Your Mattress

We recommend rotating your mattress every three to six months to prevent early sagging. Rotating your mattress regularly ensures that your weight is distributed evenly across the mattress’ surface.

Rotating also helps slow down the process of sagging if it has already begun. By switching the head and foot of your bed regularly, you alternate which parts of the bed bear the most weight for a given time. 

Again, it’s about distributing your weight evenly so that one part of the bed doesn’t sink lower and lower in a short amount of time. 

Purchase A Mattress Topper

A mattress topper is an extra layer of foam that you place on top of your mattress for added comfort. If your mattress is already sagging, a mattress topper can provide additional cushioning and keep you from experiencing back pain, sore shoulders, stiff neck, etc. 

Change Your Foundation

An inadequate mattress foundation can speed up the sagging process. This is especially true for foundations that make use of slats – the unsupported areas can be ground zero for sagging – or don’t have a lot of support at the center of the mattress. 

Fill Up The Space With Pillows

For a really quick fix, grab some pillows for additional support in areas where your mattress has started to sag. This will help reduce any pain you might feel from sleeping on an uneven and unsupportive surface. 

Add Some Plywood Underneath The Mattress

A thin piece of plywood placed between the bed frame and the mattress could add the support you need to sleep well at night. That said, laying on a piece of plywood isn’t the most comfortable experience, even with a mattress on top. 

Another issue would be temperature regulation. By placing plywood underneath your mattress, you make it harder for air to flow out from underneath. This might cause you to have warmer, sweatier nights in bed. 

When To Replace An Old Mattress

All of the tips mentioned above are only temporary solutions. If your mattress continues to sag, you will eventually need to replace it before you encounter any major problems. 

But how do you know when it’s time to replace your old mattress? Watch out for the following signs:

You Wake Up With Pain Or Discomfort

If you keep waking up with lower back, hip, and/or neck pain, it’s worth investigating whether your mattress has sagged beyond salvation. If you continue to put up with a mattress that doesn’t provide you with the right support for your joints, you could end up with health issues that would take more than a new mattress to fix.

Long-term use of a sagging mattress can lead to the following health problems: 

  • Lower back pain: Lower back pain is one of the most common ailments in the world, but it can be difficult to treat. People who sleep on unsupportive mattresses and experience lower back pain for years may need to undergo physical therapy.
  • Weight gain: Using an uncomfortable mattress can lead to poor sleep quality. When you don’t get enough sleep, your metabolism slows down – making you gain weight faster.
  • Cognitive impairment: Poor quality sleep doesn’t just make you physically unhealthy, but it also keeps you from concentrating on difficult tasks, affects your memory, and reduces your ability to solve problems. 
  • Mental health issues: Lack of sleep has also been associated with higher incidences of depression and anxiety. The latter has been known to manifest physically as fatigue, nausea, muscle aches, shortness of breath, excessive sweating, palpitations, etc.
  • Allergic rhinitis: Also known as hay fever, allergic rhinitis is characterized as sneezing, watery eyes, congestions, and itching due to an allergic response to certain triggers. When a mattress sags, it’s more likely to collect dirt and debris – including allergens like dust, dust mites, pet dander, etc. 

You Hear Creaking Or Squeaking Noises

This could just mean that your box spring or bed base needs to be repaired. However, creaking noises could also point to broken innerspring coils, which can mean that your mattress will just keep on sagging no matter what you try.

You’d Rather Sleep Somewhere Else

Does the couch seem more comfortable than your own bed? Do you find yourself sleeping like a baby in hotels but riddled with insomnia back home? Perhaps it’s high time you looked into replacing that mattress. Your bed is supposed to offer you ample support and comfort so you can get a restful night’s sleep. 

Your Mattress Is Over 7 Years Old

There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to mattress lifespans. However, Consumer Reports recommends users replace their mattresses every seven to ten years. 

FAQs About Sagging Mattresses

Why is my mattress sinking in the middle?

Mattresses sink due to natural wear and tear. Over time, the foam and coils that are designed to support our body weight can no longer do so. When this happens, it may be time to evaluate whether your mattress has reached the end of its life. 

How do I fix my sinking mattress?

You can’t fix a sinking mattress, but you can prevent it from getting worse. One way to fix a sagging mattress is by rotating it every three to six months. This will help distribute your weight more evenly and stop the mattress from continuously sagging in one spot. 

You can also check your bed foundation. If the foundation is inadequate, particularly around the center of the frame, then your mattress is more likely to start sagging early.

Can you refurbish a mattress?

You can refurbish a mattress but it will take a lot of work to do so. Typically, most people will only go so far as to deep clean an old mattress. Refurbishing an old mattress can be costly and time-consuming.