As a long-haul truck driver, you are required to spend a copious amount of time on the road. This is a job that demands long, tiring hours, as well as a lot of focus. That is why truck drivers need to obtain quality, restful sleep in their downtime.
One major determining factor in how good of a rest a trucker has is how good their mattress is. Choosing the right mattress for your truck’s sleeper berth will make all the difference in how you feel when you wake up in the morning. Our goal today is to dive into the factors you should consider when selecting the best mattress for long-haul trucking so that you can truly get the most out of your rest.
Long-haul trucking is an operation that involves countless logistic and administrative tasks. It is generally defined as covering distances of more than 250 miles. However, many drivers cover well over that distance, sometimes having to cross several states in a single trip.
Drivers are often away from home for up to several weeks at a time which in itself can be strenuous. Aside from that, this is a job that can introduce many challenges, such as vehicle breakdowns, gridlocked traffic, accidents, etc.
As we touched on earlier, long-haul trucking is no easy feat. You don’t want to deal with the challenges you may face on the road with a drowsy mindset. Drowsiness can be dire when driving, especially when driving large loads over long distances.
Professional truck drivers are at a greater risk of falling asleep at the wheel than the general population. The less sleep you are able to get, the more likely you are to be involved in a crash. That’s why it is vital that these truckers get a good night’s sleep. A restful sleep will also generally lead to better physical and mental health, allowing drivers to concentrate on the road with a clearer, fresher mind and have a safer trip.
However, achieving a restful sleep is easier said than done. The key to a night of good sleep is having a mattress that’s conducive to sleep. You need a mattress that promotes comfort, stability, and relief, especially for truckers who have been sitting up straight most of the day while driving.
The search for a truck mattress is rather different from what you would look for in a residential mattress. Truck mattresses are, in fact, not the same as residential mattresses. The biggest difference between the two is their sizes.
Truck mattresses do not fall into the standard mattress sizes like “king” or “queen”. Some of the standard truck mattress sizes you may see include:
Keep in mind that the size you’ll need will depend on your truck sleeper berth, meaning you should measure the space to confirm the exact measurements. From there, you can choose a mattress that provides both the best comfort and the best possible utilization of your cab space.
Other specific factors that long-haul truckers should consider when shopping for a truck mattress include:
There are various mattress types and mattress materials available on the market. Some popular options include memory foam, innerspring, and hybrid mattresses. The type you choose will depend on your needs and preferences, with memory foam having a more supportive, softer feel, and innerspring options being more firm.
While width and height are important aspects to think about, so is thickness. Many trucks tend to have less headroom. An extra few inches of thickness can make you feel cramped, but a mattress that is too thin might take away from your level of comfort.
Proper firmness can aid in maintaining spinal alignment as well as alleviating pressure points. The right level of firmness depends on your weight and typical sleeping position, as well as your height.
Some other factors to think about include whether the mattress offers adequate support, fits their sleeping style, falls within their budget, and will withstand the strenuous nature of their trips.
Like residential mattresses, trucking mattresses can be made from, and are available in, a variety of materials. If you’re searching for a mattress size that’s aligned more so with residential sizes, you’ll likely have the full variety of mattress type options available to you.
Trucking mattress types include:
- Pros: Memory foam mattresses are among the most comfortable mattress types. They provide softness and support, alleviating pressure and promoting pain relief. This mattress type accommodates you no matter what position you sleep in.
- Cons: Traditional memory foam mattresses have little breathability. They trap heat which may cause you to become uncomfortably hot.
The interior of innerspring mattresses is open, allowing air to flow freely within. This will keep you cool throughout the night.
These mattresses are also exceptional in the support they provide, which is perfect for sleepers who need extra help with their backs.
Innerspring mattresses tend to have pressure points that can put pressure on your back and joints. This mattress can exacerbate any aches and pains you already have.
Latex mattresses are made from all-natural materials. This environmentally friendly material is perfect for those who are conscientious about the environment. Latex mattresses are also extremely durable, as they can last up to 20 years.
This material is also hypoallergenic and it’s resistant to bacteria, mildew, and mold, making it a great option for more cleanliness-focused individuals.
Compared to other mattresses, latex mattresses are rather expensive. These mattresses are on the firmer side, so they won’t conform to your body as well. Latex mattresses do also tend to trap heat, which isn’t ideal for drivers who already run hot.
A hybrid mattress is a combination of an innerspring and memory foam mattress, so it has two internal systems working together to support your body. It’s the perfect balance between soft and firm.
This mattress is designed to cradle your body, leading to better spinal alignment and an alleviation of aches and pains. Because of their coil support systems, hybrid mattresses are more likely to keep their shape and less likely to sag.
Because of the memory foam, hybrid mattresses are more prone to retaining heat. They can also tend to be too firm for some individuals.
When searching for your long-haul mattress, you want to consider the durability of the mattress. A durable mattress is essential for long-haul trucking, considering its high level of use when the driver is on the road. Specifically, look for mattresses with high-quality materials and construction methods offering long-term durability. A mattress’s foam density, coil gauge, and overall build quality contribute to its longevity. You should also take a look at the manufacturer’s warranties to gain more insight into the lifespan of the mattress.
Moreover, if you properly maintain your mattress, you can better ensure its longevity and performance. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for cleaning and maintenance. Use a mattress protector to shield your mattress from stains and dust. Regularly vacuum and spot-clean your mattress to keep it fresh and hygienic. While these are just a couple of the ways you can care for your mattress, they can be the difference of getting a couple extra years of life out of your mattress.
At the end of the day, you want a good mattress that’s in it, like you, for the long haul. The right mattress for you depends on your own needs and preferences, and no two truckers are the same.
As we discussed, there are different types of trucking mattresses, each with its benefits and disadvantages. From different mattress sizes to additional factors to consider such as budget and sleep position, etc, there’s a lot you will need to consider. At the end of the day, what’s most important is that you invest in a mattress that will help you sleep better on the road. We encourage long-haul truckers to prioritize their sleep and comfort while traveling, as it not only contributes to their better health but the health and safety of everyone else on the roadways.