Changes in sleep and wake in response to different sleeping surfaces: A pilot study

William Vaughn McCall, Niki Boggs, Alan Letton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Six married couples (12 adults, mean age 34.8 years) were randomized as couples in a cross-over design to sleep on a queen-size conventional mattress for 2 weeks and a specially-designed pressure-relief mattress for 2 weeks. The pressure-relief mattress was designed to reduce the number of contact points exceeding 30 mm Hg. Actigraphic measurements of sleep and self-reports of sleep and daytime symptoms were collected at baseline for 2 weeks on each couple's home mattress and box springs at home, followed by 2 weeks of data collection on each randomized mattress for a total of 6 weeks of data collection. Pressure maps were created for each participant on each sleeping surface. There were no significant differences between the randomized sleeping surfaces for any measure of actigraphic sleep or self-reported sleep and daytime symptoms. However, poor pressure relief performance of the home mattress was associated with better actigraphic sleep on the randomized pressure-relief mattress. We conclude that while pressure-relief mattresses may not be universally preferred, baseline characteristics of the sleeper and/or their mattress may explain performance and sleeper preferences on future mattress selection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalApplied Ergonomics
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012


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