Skip to Content

Are Air Mattresses Good or Bad for Your Back? (Explained!)

Air mattresses are comfortable, portable, even the hospital uses them for bedridden patients, so why are there so many complaints about air mattresses? Why do people criticize the overall user experience? 

The air mattress may be comfortable but it has a high tendency to deflate over time. The deflated air mattress won’t be able to provide the required support to your back and may lead to stiffness and terrible back pain.

For campers and bedridden patients, air mattresses are one of the popular choices, should they be worried? What are the positive aspects of an air mattress? Let’s find out.

Are air mattresses good or bad for your back?

Air mattresses may be comfortable to sleep in, they might also increase the blood circulation in the body. However, air mattresses are unable to provide sufficient support to the spine and back muscles. Regularly sleeping in an air mattress often results in stiff muscles and back pain.

Air mattresses deflate pretty easily and lose their durability and effectiveness. Our spine, hips, shoulders need adequate support while sleeping for 6 to 8 hours. Air mattresses are unable to provide that support for a long time.

However, an air mattress comes in handy for bedridden patients as it puts less pressure on the body and helps achieve better blood circulation throughout the body. For their portability and lightweight features, Air mattresses are one of the most popular choices of bed for campers and outdoor adventures.

Air mattresses may not be able to provide satisfactory service for a long time and may be bad for your back but they can be a great alternative bed for campers and bedridden patients.

Are air mattresses good for back pain? 

While sleeping your back muscles and spine need proper support to avoid any kind of muscle stiffness and pain. An air mattress might be comfortable to sleep in but it also has a high risk of deflation over time.

With a new air mattress, you might not feel any trouble but with time the mattress will surely deflate and you will have a bad posture while sleeping.

Due to bad sleeping posture and lack of proper support from your air mattress, your spine, hip, shoulder joint, and connected muscle will surely go through stiffness. Muscle stiffness will make it hard for you to move freely, you might face muscle cramp, muscle tears, joint pain, hip bone displacement, and much more.

If you already have back pain then avoiding regular use of an air mattress is highly recommended.

Can an air mattress cause back pain? 

If you are going through back pain then it’s high time you change your lifestyle. You should start by changing your mattress and maintaining a proper sleeping posture.

You will be sleeping for 8 to 9 hours a day and if your bed is unable to provide your spine and back muscles the required support to maintain the proper posture then you are up for a great deal of trouble. 

The main problem with an air mattress is it has a high chance of deflation over time. If you use a deflated air mattress then your shoulder, spine, hips, all the joints, and connected muscles will go through a great deal of strain and may become stiff. If your body is in a bad posture throughout the night it won’t take too much time to experience back pain.

What are the benefits of sleeping on an air mattress? 

Better blood circulation:

sleeping on an air mattress will surely help in getting better blood circulation throughout your whole body. The air mattress will put very minimal pressure on the body, your body will be at ease and the blood circulation will get a decent amount of boost.


air mattresses are known for their comfortability. Your body will feel at ease thanks to the inflated mattress. 

Require less storage space:

air mattresses are easy to inflate and deflate. You can deflate your air mattress in seconds and fit it in a bag. Its lightweight and compact build will make it easy for you to carry and store it anywhere you want.


Compared to the other mattress available on market, an air mattress is far more affordable. You can get an air mattress for twin size bed at $30 to $40, and for a queen size bed you can get an air mattress at $60 to $80


the most admirable quality of an air mattress is it’s lightweight and portability. You can release the air from the mattress then fold it and put it in a bag, it’s that simple to carry. The air pump may weigh 7 to 9kg, that’s also pretty light to carry around.

Easy to Maintain:

nowadays air mattresses are made of durable, puncture-proof, water-resistant material. You can simply inflate your mattress and forget all your worries. The cleaning and maintaining process will also be easy as pie. 

Why are air mattresses used for bedridden patients?

Better recovery:

the air mattress is comfortable and helps in better blood circulation. A bedridden patient needs lots of rest to completely recover and achieve a healthy state, an air mattress comes in handy and serves the overall purpose.

Put less pressure on muscle:

while sleeping, an air mattress will put less pressure on muscles and joints. This specific quality of air mattress makes it the preferred and best choice for bedridden patients. 

Are air mattresses good for everyday use? 

Air mattresses may be comfortable to use and one of the best choices for bedridden patients but when it comes to regular use it’s better to avoid it. Air mattresses lack the ability to provide proper support to your spine, hip muscles, and joints. Air mattress tends to deflate with time and lose its efficiency and comfort.

 If you use an air mattress every day then get ready to have a stiff back and a never-ending cycle of back pain. Walking around with a stiff back will surely worsen the situation, so using an air mattress once in a while might be a comfortable experience but it’s not a good idea to use it every day.

Are air mattresses good for camping? 

Air mattresses are really good for camping. Its portability and comfort make it a perfect choice for camping. You can release the air and pack it in a bag and go camping. The Air mattress and air pump are lightweight,  so you won’t be feeling energy drained even if you are carrying all the stuff on your back. 

Modern Air mattresses are durable, puncture-proof, waterproof, and much more, so using an air mattress on camping will be a great choice. Even on a rainy day, you can enjoy a pleasant sleep without any worries if you have an air mattress at your disposal.

Can you put an air mattress on top of a regular mattress? 

An Air mattress might not fit on your regular bed frame, but putting an air mattress on top of a regular mattress isn’t a good idea either. Air mattresses are used as an alternative for regular beds. Air mattresses are durable and comfortable but not designed for regular beds. Putting an air mattress on top of a regular mattress ain’t gonna give you any extra benefits.

 If you are thinking that putting an air mattress on a regular mattress will add on extra comfortability then it’s not that simple. It might not fit into the frame, the overall balance might be disturbed and the air mattress has a high risk of deflation, So using a regular mattress on a regular bed and using an air mattress separately will be a wise decision.

How long can you use an air mattress? 

Air mattress has longevity of almost 5 to 6 years but it might not be able to provide satisfactory service for that long. Air mattresses are durable, comfortable, easy to use, and easy to maintain. It’s been a popular choice for camping and medical use for bedridden patients. 

However, air mattresses are not suggested for regular use as they won’t be able to provide adequate support to spine and back muscles. If an air mattress is used on a regular basis then it will deflate pretty soon and lose its comfort and effectiveness. 

So the longevity of your air mattress will depend on how long it’s been in use and how well it’s maintained.

Hope you got an in-depth idea about the air mattress, its positive aspects, and its lackings. Air mattress is a great alternative bed option, it’s suitable and famous around the campers.

Air mattresses also help bedridden patients to relax and recover in a comfortable environment. The only shortcoming of an air mattress is its tendency to deflate over time.

The regular use of a deflated mattress will definitely lead to stiffness and pain in the back muscle and joints. So using an air mattress once in a while may be okay but don’t make it a regular habit.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Are Air Mattresses Recyclable?

Are Air Mattresses Waterproof?

Do Air Mattresses Come with Pumps?

Do Air Mattresses Have Weight Limits?

Do Air Mattresses Make You Cold?

Can You Leave an Air Bed Inflated?