Getting the right hospital bed is a challenge, but finding the best hospital bed mattress for your needs is a different challenge altogether. With so many brands to choose from and so many mattresses that look similar on the outside, you have to consider what is beneath the surface. Check out our list of the top 13 hospital bed mattresses to compare features, specs, and find the one that suits you best!
What is a Hospital Bed Mattress?
Although hospital bed dimensions are usually equivalent to that of a twin XL bed, you cannot simply put any twin XL mattress on a hospital bed. If the mattress is too stiff, it won’t adjust to the bending/flexing of the bed frame when you move the bed into an elevated or seating position.
On top of that, traditional mattresses aren’t designed to accommodate medical needs that are commonly experienced by people who are confined to a bed. That’s why specially-made mattresses for hospital beds are necessary.
Hospital Bed Mattress Types
These are the most similar to the mattresses that you’ve likely used for most of your life. However, they’re designed to be more supportive of the user, and simultaneously more flexible so that they can adapt to changes in the bed’s position.
Innerspring mattresses for hospital beds are made from small metal coils encased in thick foam. Unlike the coils on a traditional mattress which are more rigid and connected by a wire frame, innerspring hospital bed mattresses have coils that are individually wrapped. That allows the bed to remain supportive of the user and still be flexible enough to be used on a hospital bed!
These mattresses are usually the longest-lasting (due to the coils) and the cheapest type of hospital bed mattress. Unfortunately, they also tend to be the least comfortable; some users, though, do prefer them because they’re more firm than other mattress types!
The most common type of mattress for a hospital bed is made of foam, though not exactly the same as the memory foam you might be familiar with. Normal memory foam mattresses tend to be too soft for many people, especially those who have more severe back/pelvic issues and therefore need more support. Because hospital bed users are in their beds for more than just sleep, foam hospital bed mattresses need to function well for sleeping, sitting, and reclining alike.
Typically, foam hospital bed mattresses will be made of two layers. The top layer is much softer and will sometimes be designed to have small air channels that keep the user cool while in the bed. The bottom layer is much more firm and provides the majority of the support. The combination of these two layers makes foam hospital mattresses a solid combination of comfortable, breathable, and supportive!
The most expensive and beneficial type of hospital bed mattress, these products are designed with a series of small air chambers that can fill and deflate independently of one another. This allows the user to customize the firmness/softness of the mattress to their needs in each position throughout the day.
These air mattresses aren’t like the ones you might know from camping trips or visits to relatives. They are much more hi-tech and have a layer of foam on top that makes them softer than those other air mattresses.
The real advantage of a hospital bed air mattress is that they reduce the risk of pressure sores. Pressure sores are a serious issue- over 2.5 million require a doctor’s attention each year, just in America. Air mattresses come with a control unit that can cycle air through all of the air chambers.
The air chambers, applying gentle pressure to the body to shift body weight and stimulating tissue, help prevent pressure sores from forming. It’s like a very gentle form of air massage and is very beneficial to anyone who is confined to a bed!
13 Best Hospital Bed Mattresses for Every Need
1. Best Pressure Relief Mattress for Hospital Bed: Apex Medical Domus Air Mattress
One of the biggest drawbacks to air mattresses is that they can be pretty expensive. The Domus, from Apex Medical, isn’t cheap, but it is more affordable than other, similar models. The mattress can inflate or deflate to your comfort, ranging from 5 inches thick at full inflation to 3 inches at the lowest setting.
There is also a version of the mattress that ranges between 5 and 8 inches thick, depending on the setting you choose. This makes it a bit more comfortable but doesn’t change the overall effectiveness of the mattress.
The real strength of the Domus is in its easy-to-use control box. Users and caretakers can easily select a setting that makes them feel the most comfortable, whether they are sitting, reclining, or sleeping. The Domus also has a cycle mode that, while it cannot be adjusted, is very comfortable and works well for most users. The mattress can sense the weight of the user, and adjusts the air pressure in the chambers accordingly; the user can then fine-tune things more to their liking.
Finally, the Domus has a couple of features that make it a suitable air mattress for just about anyone. The covering on the mattress wicks away moisture and draws heat away from the mattress surface, keeping you comfortable around the clock. Also, the covering, though breathable, still resists fluid and stains better than most similar air mattresses!
2. Best Hospital Bed Air Mattress with Pump: Drive Medical Low Air-Loss Mattress
This is one of the best hospital bed mattresses for people who are at risk for pressure sores or other conditions related to bed confinement. The included air pump is very quiet, even in the alternating pressure mode, so you or your loved one can sleep soundly no matter what the pump is doing.
The mattress also continually monitors for changes in weight placement and air pressure and automatically adjusts the mattress back to the user’s most comfortable level.
The cover of the mattress is simultaneously breathable and water-resistant, made from nylon that is similar to light rain jackets- soft and sturdy. The mattress is made up of 20 different 8-inch air cells, and each cell can be very easily removed and replaced if it fails or stops working properly.
These two features combine to form one of the most durable hospital bed air mattresses on the market!
Finally, the mattress features an upgraded version of the alternating pressure cycle mode that most air mattresses have. The three air cells that the user’s head lay on top of do not inflate or deflate with the rest of the cycle; they form a static “pillow” that stabilizes the head and neck while the rest of the mattress works to displace body weight and reduce pressure sores!
3. Best Twin Hospital Bed Mattress: Invacare Softform Excel
It’s hard to find a true Twin-sized hospital bed mattress; most mattresses are more akin to the Twin XL size. The Invacare Softform Excel is available in three different lengths: 76, 80, and 84 inches accommodating for the length of any hospital bed. It’s not just the perfect fit that makes this a great choice; the mattress is also incredibly comfortable.
The excel is made of two different foam layers, each with a different purpose. The bottom layer is significantly thicker, providing ample support for users up to 450 pounds. The top layer is made up of much softer foam, with a series of grooves that draw heat away from the body and allow for cooler, more comfortable sleep.
If you’re looking for a perfect-fitting twin hospital bed mattress, the 76-inch version of this mattress is best for you. Keep in mind, though, that hospital beds typically require a slightly longer mattress so that they won’t “bunch up” as much when the bed is in a seated position!
4. Best Memory Foam Mattress for Hospital Bed: Graham-Field Memory Foam Mattress
Although it’s a very simple-looking mattress, there is more comfort to it than what is immediately visible. The reason for the unappealing cover is that it’s made of liquid and stain-resistant nylon. On the inside, though, this mattress is made with the same type of high-quality memory foam you’re more familiar with.
This mattress was designed specifically for long-term use in hospital beds. It’s every bit as comfortable as normal memory foam mattresses intended for traditional beds. If you’re looking for a hospital bed mattress that makes you forget you’re even in a hospital bed- this could be it.
This is a wonderful option for seniors and other people who are confined to a bed, not to mention quite affordable! In fact, it’s one of the least expensive options on our list!
While it might not do much for pressure sores in the way that an air mattress would, it’s still possible to get this mattress and an air mattress topper without breaking the bank.
5. Best Bariatric Hospital Bed Mattress: Medacure Pressure Redistribution Bariatric Mattress
Three different layers of foam make up this incredibly comfortable and supportive mattress, capable of holding users who weigh up to 550 pounds without degrading! The bottom layer is made of thick, super-firm foam, followed by a much softer but still supportive middle layer. The top layer is both the thinnest and the softest and is channel-cut to allow the foam to gently mold around the user and dissipate body heat.
For bariatric patients, there really is no better option than this. It lacks an innerspring construction, something that would normally make the mattress comfortable but weak. But, the three-tier foam construction actually makes this the strongest mattress on the list! If you weigh more than 300 pounds and need a hospital bed mattress, look no further than this model from Medacure.
On top of the strength and comfort it provides, this mattress also includes all the features that make up a quality hospital bed mattress for home use. It has a removable, washable cover that is stain and fluid-resistant- that’s a valuable feature for keeping microbes from making a home on the bed surface. It comes in three different lengths- 76, 80, and 84 inches- and it’s designed to fit on most bariatric hospital beds.
6. Best Gel Mattress for Hospital Bed: Excel Sleep 6-Inch Gel Foam Mattress
Gel-infused foam mattresses correct one of the biggest problems that people have with memory foam: that it holds onto heat like it’s afraid to lose it. This gel mattress, though, works to draw heat away from the body, letting hot sleepers feel cool and comfortable. It’s one of the few hospital bed mattresses that is made with cooling foam, making it the absolute best choice for people who want a cool, soft mattress.
Like other foam hospital bed mattresses, this item has a thicker bottom layer of foam. It provides lots of support for the user and prevents the mattress from wearing down too fast.
One last thing: this mattress is available in five different widths. If you have a bariatric hospital bed or any model that is wider than the standard 36 inches, it can be hard to find a mattress to fit. This cool, comfortable, long-lasting mattress is a great option for anyone who’s looking for gel foam or just a mattress that’s wide enough!
7. Best Firm Hospital Bed Mattress: Drive Medical Extra Firm Mattress
This mattress is the firmest on our list and quite likely one of the firmest on the market. But, being extra firm doesn’t mean it’s like laying on a rock. Rather, it’s like laying on an ultra-supportive yet still gentle bed- which is exactly what it is!
Firm mattresses are great for sleepers who wake up feeling sore and tired after using a memory foam or traditional innerspring. They’re also great for people who have certain back, hip, or neck issues and can’t safely use a soft bed.
This mattress combines three different layers of supportive foam to create a firm yet comfortable mattress surface. If you’re looking for a mattress that you won’t sink into and won’t wear down over the course of a few months, this is the one for you!
8. Best Comfortable Hospital Bed Mattress: Invacare Solace Hospital Bed Mattress
The top layer of the Invacare Solace has three different zones, each with a different density, designed to uniquely cradle and comfort different parts of the body. People’s heads have different comfort requirements than their backs, and so do their legs; this mattress accommodates all three areas! On top of that, the Solace features what Invacare calls a “fortress-cut” surface that evenly displaces body weight and reduces overall pressure.
If you’re looking for a mattress that concentrates on comfort more than anything else, this is it. You can count on sleeping soundly and comfortably using this mattress, as well as sitting up without feeling uncomfortable and restless. For people who spend more time in the bed than out of it, a mattress like this is a great relief.
Furthermore, the Invacare Solace performs better than most mattresses when it comes to pressure sores. It isn’t an air mattress, so it won’t be extremely effective, but the “fortress-cut” foam does a great job of balancing your body weight rather than concentrating it in one area, which is what leads to pressure sores.
9. Best Innerspring Hospital Bed Mattress: Invacare Innerspring Mattress
Innerspring mattresses for hospital beds aren’t very common, but they are a great choice for users who like a medium-firm bed. The reason they aren’t very popular is that innerspring mattresses usually cannot bend the way that they need to if used on a hospital bed. This model from Invacare, though, is designed with smaller, individual coils that let the mattress flex with the bed.
Two of the biggest advantages of choosing an innerspring mattress for your hospital bed are that they last much longer and cost far less than memory foam or air mattresses. That’s especially true for this mattress because it’s made by Invacare, a company with a long-standing reputation for making durable and comfortable medical products.
There aren’t too many luxurious features on this mattress; it’s purely functional. If you’re looking for an affordable hospital bed mattress that will have a longer useful life, this is it! Keep in mind, though, that if you are worried about pressure sores, this mattress won’t do much. It’s a good idea for people who choose this mattress to opt for an alternating pressure air mattress topper!
9. Best Low Air-Loss Mattress for Hospital Bed: MedAir Low Air Loss Mattress System
If you’re in the market for an air mattress, this is likely the best one on the market- provided you have the funds to cover it. This mattress is stuffed full of features that will keep you comfortable, supported, and relaxed 24 hours a day.
First of all, the 8-inch air cells are designed to both retain air pressure and slowly circulate cool air; this keeps you comfortable and gives additional protection against bed sores. Second, the air pump can be customized to your exact weight and comfort level and includes a small hand-held remote you can use to fine-tune the mattress to your liking.
Third, this mattress has a pump setting specifically for the seated bed position, concentrating the air pressure under you, where your body weight is concentrated. This allows you to stay in the upright seated position for as long as you like without having to adjust the inflation or worry about “bottoming out”
Finally, the pump has a battery backup that can provide 24 hours of operating time before it needs to be plugged back in. If you’re worried at all about power failures, this emergency feature will feel like a great relief!
10. Best Invacare Hospital Bed Mattress: Invacare Softform Premier
Invacare’s hospital mattresses are in keeping with Invacare’s reputation. They’re comfortable, long-lasting, and slightly expensive. The Softform Premier is a well-constructed, soft, durable, and easy-to-clean mattress. As such, it should be a great fit for nearly any senior who is confined to a bed.
Most hospital bed mattresses have a cover that resists stains and fluids, but that usually means they feel rough and “synthetic”. The Softform Premier has a stain-resistant cover, but it’s made with four-way stretch fabric that makes it feel more like a traditional mattress when you lay on it.
Two layers of foam and a premium stain-resistant cover make up one of the most comfortable, durable mattresses around- a great choice from Invacare!
11. Best Drive Medical Hospital Bed Mattress: Drive Medical Gravity 7
Drive focuses on making products for seniors and other people with serious needs; they aim to make simple products that provide real benefits. This mattress is no different: it’s simple, comfortable, and very affordable.
There isn’t much to this mattress: two layers of foam, one firmer than the other. The top layer has grooves in it that more effectively and evenly redistribute body weight, similar to mattresses that cost far more. If you need cost-effective, beneficial solutions, Drive Medical is a great choice, more often than not!
12. Best Medline Hospital Bed Mattress: Medline Advantage Therapeutic Mattress
This hospital bed mattress is the only easily-available mattress from Medline. If you have a Medline hospital bed or simply prefer this brand, look no further! Keep in mind, though, that it’s not going to be a luxury mattress.
It’s a very simple item, with only one solid layer of foam throughout. It’s still high-quality foam, but there isn’t anything special about it. This means that the risk of developing pressure sores will be higher with this mattress than others.
However, with the money you save getting this mattress, you can likely afford a nice, high-quality air mattress topper to create a cost and health-effective hospital bed setup! This is a great way to save money and still get the same experience as a much more expensive air mattress.
13. Best Tempurpedic Hospital Bed Mattress: Tempurpedic Tempur-Cloud Prima
For starters, we should mention that this isn’t technically a hospital bed mattress; Tempurpedic doesn’t make them. However, this mattress is both the right dimensions and the right thickness to work on a hospital bed.
If you’re looking for a luxury mattress to go on top of your hospital bed, this is it. It won’t provide the same kind of stain-resistance or pressure redistribution as dedicated hospital bed mattresses, but it will be extremely comfortable! This is a good idea for people who will be using a hospital bed long-term but don’t have the sort of serious medical needs that necessitate a serious hospital bed mattress.
Best Hospital Bed Mattress Pad: Bevel Medical Alternating Pressure Mattress Pad
This mattress pad is a stellar combination of low price and high benefit. You can use it over any foam or innerspring mattress to get the best of both worlds: the comfort of memory foam and the pressure redistribution of an air mattress.
The pump on this mattress pad is very easy to use; it’s simple for any user to find a relaxing pressure level or use the alternating pressure cycle to treat/prevent pressure sores. Because pressure sores are such a high risk, this affordable preventative measure shouldn’t be overlooked!
Best Hospital Bed Mattress Sheets: Drive Medical Bedding in a Box
Most of the time, you have to purchase the fitted sheet, flat sheet, and pillowcases for your hospital bed separately. This product gives you everything you need in one box; each of the pieces is made with easy-to-clean, soft fabric that’ll hold up for a long time without looking dingy or faded.
In the package, you also get a matching cotton blanket. It might not be the most comfortable blanket in the world, but it is warm and stain-resistant. Overall, it’s a nice, practical solution for any hospital bed user.
Buying Guide: What to Look for in A Hospital Bed Mattress
Can You Use a Regular Mattress on a Hospital Bed?
Most of the time, the answer to this question is that you cannot use a regular mattress on a hospital bed. Traditional innerspring mattresses are too thick to bend with the bed in elevated or seated positions. Memory foam mattresses, flexible though they are, are typically too thick to be comfortable in a seated position.
If you want to use a regular mattress on your hospital bed, try to find a memory foam mattress that is less than 10 inches thick. If you go this route, do keep in mind that you will be at a higher risk of discomfort and for developing pressure sores! Hospital bed mattresses are built differently for a reason- they provide better support and pressure redistribution, necessary for the comfort of seniors and other bed-confined people.
Hospital Bed Mattress Sizes
The above are the two different hospital bed mattress sizes; virtually every hospital bed mattress will fit one of those two descriptions. While getting a wider bed is appealing to many, mattresses wider than 36 inches will be unable to fit through common doors with the user inside them. This limits the benefit of having a hospital bed; keep this in mind before buying one for your home!
Where Can I Buy a Hospital Bed Mattress?
For most people, the best place to get a hospital bed mattress will be on Amazon. They have the largest selection online, an easy ordering process, and are very generous with returns/refunds. You can also order directly from popular manufacturers, but the process isn’t as simple. Below, you can go to different brand/store websites to check out their selections:
Tips for Buying the Best Hospital Bed Mattress for Your Needs
Price Range of Hospital Bed Mattresses
How much should you expect to pay for a hospital bed mattress? It depends on the type of mattress you’re in search of:
The reason for the large difference in price for each type of hospital bed mattress comes down to the brand name and features of the mattress. The more features and brand recognition, the higher the price.
Medicare Rules for Hospital Bed Mattresses
You can get your hospital bed mattress covered by Medicare as long as you have a doctor’s prescription. Hospital beds are considered Durable Medical Equipment (DME) and are quite useless without a mattress! Medicare will cover 80% of the cost; the remaining 20% will be paid for out of pocket or by supplemental insurance/Medicaid (if applicable).
Preventing Pressure Sores
The best way for seniors to prevent pressure sores is to get an air mattress or mattress topper for their hospital bed. They will gently stimulate tissue and evenly distribute bodyweight, which will prevent pressure sores from forming.
If you are concerned about pressure sores due to bed confinement, we strongly recommend considering either an air mattress or air mattress overlay!
The best hospital bed mattress strikes a delicate balance between comfort and benefit. There are many types of hospital bed mattresses, each with different strengths and features. If you’re looking for a hospital bed mattress, chances are you can find one that suits you perfectly from our list!
Which hospital bed mattress do you think you’ll be going with? Let us know in the comments section below!