Sleeping On The Floor: Benefits, Treatment, And Side Effects

People usually can’t sleep without a good mattress. Moreover, high-quality sleep is always linked with a good mattress.

But, did you know that is some cultures mattress is not anyhow linked with good sleep or sleeping in general.

With the rise of minimalistic living, even Western culture is taking into consideration new ways of sleeping. Therefore, the mattress is becoming unnecessary. But, how effective sleeping without a good mattress is?

In this article, we will tackle this question, and see how sleeping on the floor is effective and if there are any side effects, and benefits.

Sleeping On The Floor

Mattresses are common. Everyone has one, whether it be simple, new, old, specially designed, or a fancy one. Moreover, these comfortable items are designed with one goal – to help you sleep better.

Could you even imagine your night without sleeping on a mattress? But, what if there were better ways for us to sleep? As you probably know, humans slept on the ground for millennials.

If they could do it, could we? And most important is should we sleep on the floor?

As it turns out, sleeping on the floor comes with numerous pros and cons.

So, if you are interested in this type of sleeping, it’s essential to make sure that you won’t be injured in the long term. Lett’s explore first the benefits of sleeping on the floor.

Benefits Of Sleeping On The Floor

There is no specific evidence that floor-sleeping can anyhow help with your back pain or bad posture, However, according to many, floor sleeping helps in providing relief. In a way it makes sense.

For example, a soft mattress can never provide mandatory support. Without support, the body sinks down, causing the spine to curve. Eventually, this can lead to back pain and severe back pain issues. This is different than back pain in sleep.

In fact, if your mattress is too soft, you should think about changing it for a more solid one or about placing plywood under your mattress.

One more effective move would be to place your soft mattress and place it on the floor.

Good to know: Scientists are still recommending mattresses.

Sleeping On The Floor And Back Pain

Many claims that sleeping on the floor did wonders for their back. Truth is that a firmer surface may ease your back pain. However, you need to take more factors into consideration such as the

As you probably know so far, there is isn’t one universal back pain. Therefore, knowing the cause of your pain should be the first step.

When it comes to floor-sleeping, back pain and science one study showed the following. The journal Sleep Health published an article in 2015. The study conducted 24 different articles and the final conclusion was that only benefits were linked to medium-firm surfaces.

Sleeping On The Floor And Sciatica

Next to back pain, many reported that floor-sleeping helped them with treating sciatica. But before we say if this is more of an anecdote or truth, let’s explain sciatica in the first place.

So… What is sciatica?

Sciatica is pain that involves your sciatic nerve. These nerves are present all the way from your lower back to your hips, buttocks, and each leg. This pain is often caused by a herniated disc or bulging.

But… Can floor-sleeping help with sciatica?

It’s a fact that firmer surfaces can help both with sciatica and back pain. The soft surfaces can worsen sciatica and stress your joints. Still, there is no hard evidence that floor-sleeping definitely treats sciatica.

So, if you have sciatica the very best thing that you can do is to contact your doctor and physical therapist before you plan and start floor-sleeping.

Sleeping On The Floor And Posture

This is another common anecdotal benefit. Many reported that floor-sleeping improved their posture. Again, this is still to be scientifically confirmed.

Yes, soft surface and cure your spine, while hard surfaces will provide much-needed support. According to many, the firmness of the floor helps the spine stay straight.

Still, without hard scientific pross, it’s best to be careful if you have spine problems, talk to your doctor first. Moreover, if you now have poor posture or any spinal disorder like kyphosis or scoliosis, talk to your doctor about floor-sleeping. Your doctor will know the best if floor-sleeping is safe for you.

Since we have listed the possible benefits of floor-sleeping, you should be aware of the possible negative sides of floor-sleeping. Let’s see what are downsides of floor-sleeping.

How Bad Is Sleeping On The Floor For You

Some will forever claim how floor-sleeping helped them tremendously, while others won’t. Like there are those who only have good things to say about floor-sleeping, there are those who actually suffered from trying this.

So, if you are just starting your floor-sleeping or you are thinking about it, think about possible side effects as well.

Increased Back Pain

While some claim that their back pain was significantly lower or gone forever, others claim that floor-sleeping had opposite effects on them. This is something to think about since hard surfaces can make it difficult for your spine to maintain its natural curve.

Researchers even found that hard surfaces were associated with fewer benefits.

They published their founding in a 2003 study published in The Lancet.

This study included 313 adults who had non-specific low back pain. Participants were randomly divided into two groups to sleep on a firm mattress and a medium-firm mattress for 90 days.

Interestingly, the group that slept on firm mattresses reported more pain. The others, sho slept on a medium-firm mattress reported less back pain. This includes pain both in bed and during the day.

What we know for sure is that more research and scientific studies are needed so we can truly understand the link between the back pain and sleeping on the firm surfaces.

Allergic Reactions

Before we start talking about allergic reactions linked to the floor, we need to mention the obvious. Mattresses must be cleaned in order to avoid any allergic reactions.

For strict mattress cleaning instructions, check this link. And, of course, the allergic reactions that we are going to talk about here, are different than common allergies.

So, you know already, we walk on the floor. Some have even the habit of entering the home with their shoes on. Of course, that means that you put extra dust and bacteria in your home. So, you can expect to find, at any time, on your floors common allergens, such as:

  • dust mites
  • dust
  • mold

Naturally, some people are heavily allergic to these substances. Therefore, sleeping on the floor might lead to:

  • runny nose
  • red eyes
  • wheezing
  • sneezing
  • trouble breathing
  • itchy eyes

Exposure To Cold

Your floor will always be cooler than the rest of the room.

Unless you have specially installed floor heaters. Therefore, it might feel good to sleep on the floor during the summer months, but in the winter… The situation is significantly different.

A cold floor during the winter can reduce your body heat and temperature, making you feel colder than usual.

Avoid Sleeping On The Floor If…

In general, experimenting with sleeping on the floor is fine, as long as you don’t any medical problem. However, if you have any physical difficulties or you have been advanced to avoid firm surfaces, you should stay away from the idea of floor-sleeping.

There are a few groups of people who would totally avoid or be very careful before trying it.

So, if you find yourself in any of the groups listed below, you should take with your doctor before start practicing floor-sleeping.

1. The Elderly

If you are part of this group, you should know that with floor-sleeping you could actually do more harm than good.

Loss of muscle and thinner skin, on top of fat loss, means that you can be susceptible to severe bruising and pressure.

Therefore, sleeping on the firm surface could only be enhanced with hard sleep.

Also, your joints are more vulnerable as you age.

2. Cold Sleepers

If you love to sleep among many blankets and on something that feels as if you are sleeping on the cloud, sleeping on the floor might not be your thing.

This is even more realistic if you plan to sleep on floors without carpeting.

Since the ground is the coldest part of the room when the heat rises, you just might stay away from floors.

So, if you are a cold sleeper and you insist on sleeping on the floor, you should always wear warm pajamas and focus on building a warm padding base.

3. You Suffer From A Serious Health Problem

If you have a serious medical issue, make sure that you speak with your doctor before continuing.

This is especially important if you suffer from muscular or skeletal issues. Don’t forget: your health comes first.

How To Sleep On The Floor

If you still believe that sleeping on the floor might ease your pain, you should know how to sleep on the floor. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps for a safe and comfortable floor sleeping.

  1. Prepare well: think about warmer pajamas and changing your pillow.
  2. Mental preparation: think about it days before you actually start. Be ready that you might feel discomfort in the first few days, even a week.
  3. Create the right surface: research floor-sleeping mats, sleeping bag pads, layers of blankets, and foam mattress toppers.

    You will probably have to buy them all so you can test them.