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Lumbar support pillows support the lower part of a person’s back during sleep. This might help with recurring back pain and help a person sleep better.

A quick look at 7 of the best lumbar support pillows

The lumbar region is the lower area of a person’s back.

When a person is lying down in bed, they may have a gap between their lower back and the mattress. This can lead to trouble sleeping and may cause discomfort and pain upon waking up.

A 2015 study suggests that around 80% of people experience low back pain.

According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), around 7–19% of adults in the United States are not getting enough sleep.

The NHLBI also states that this can result in a range of health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and depression.

Many people may benefit from lumbar support pillows to help reduce back pain and improve sleep quality.

A lumbar support pillow is a pillow that sits between a person’s lower back and the bed. It offers additional support to the lower back while the person is in bed.

If left unsupported, the flexed curvature of the spine can cause lower back pain.

A person can also use a lumbar support cushion to support their lower back when sitting. These cushions have a different design but work in a similar way.

This article looks at lumbar support pillows for use while lying in bed.

When a person is sleeping, their muscles slow down, and gravity becomes the major influence on the body, particularly on the spine.

While a person is resting in bed, the force of gravity may deform the soft tissue of their back, leading to back pain and other issues.

An older survey revealed that 95% of orthopedic surgeons believed that mattresses played a part in managing low back pain. A further 76% of these surgeons thought that a firm mattress was beneficial to lower back health.

In addition to using a firm mattress, a person may wish to use a lumbar support pillow.

One study found that lumbar support distributed pressure over a wider body area when people were sleeping. This may help limit back pain and other back problems that can arise from a lack of lumbar support.

As well as reducing low back pain, lumbar support pillows may help a person get a better, more comfortable sleep as they lie in bed.

Before purchasing a lumbar support pillow, a person may wish to consider the following factors:

  • durability
  • comfort
  • type of support
  • eco-friendly certifications
  • sustainability
  • price

MNT chooses pillows that meet the following criteria, where possible:

  • Certifications: MNT will choose products that have CertiPUR-US or other certifications. This means that the products are low in pollutants and free from heavy metals and volatile organic compounds.
  • Size: MNT chooses products that are available in various sizes.
  • Materials and fill: MNT selects products made from different materials and fills, such as memory foam and latex, to suit a range of sleeping positions and lifestyles.
  • Budget: MNT features products to suit a wide range of budgets.
  • Sleep trials: MNT chooses companies that offer a sleep trial.
  • Shipping: Where possible, MNT will include shipping information, such as where the company delivers to and whether shipping is free.
  • Warranties and returns policies: MNT will include products that carry warranties and clear returns policies.

There is a wide variety of lumbar support pillows available on the market. Below are seven options that people may wish to try.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.

Best for posture: The OPTP Original McKenzie Night Roll

  • Price: from $38.50
  • Customer rating: 4.8 out of five stars

According to the manufacturer, this pillow supports the spine and helps a person maintain optimal posture when they are sleeping.

The product ties around the waist and has tapered ends to help a person move freely while wearing it.

It also has a removable cotton-polyester cover that is machine-washable.

The OPTP Original McKenzie night roll is available in three sizes.

Additional features include:

  • dimensions of 31 x 5 x 5 inches (in) for the extra small and medium sizes
  • dimensions of 40.5 x 5 x 5 in for the large and extra large sizes
  • available in red, white, and blue colors

Best for a cool sleep: Gentle Living Lumbar Support Pillow for Sleeping Back Pain

  • Price: $34.99
  • Customer rating: no reviews available on the website

The manufacturers say this pillow supports a person’s back while they sleep in any position.

The company also states that the pillow is made with eco-friendly materials and uses memory foam to adapt to the curve in a person’s spine.

This product has heat-dissipating cooling gel, which the manufacturers state helps regulate a person’s sleeping temperature.

Other features include:

  • adjustable height
  • a hypoallergenic bamboo cover
  • a travel-friendly design
  • dimensions of 19.6 x 8.2 x 2.9 in

Best hypoallergenic pillow: TruContour Super Lumbar Pillow for Sleeping Back Pain

  • Price: list price of $59.99
  • Customer rating: five out of five stars

According to the manufacturer, this pillow offers support to people who sleep on their backs or sides. It can also sit under the stomach for front sleepers who use softer mattresses.

TruContour also states that this pillow is hypoallergenic. Other features include:

  • medical-grade memory foam
  • a super soft, machine-washable design
  • dimensions of 10 x 24 x 3 in

Best for pregnancy:

  • Price: list price of $79.99
  • Customer rating: five out of five stars

According to the manufacturer, this product offers support to pregnant people while they are in bed.

The company claims that anyone can use the pillow to get adequate lumbar support while sleeping.

This product features organic bamboo charcoal memory foam. The manufacturers say this offers temperature regulation and absorbs moisture when a person is in bed.

Additional features include a machine-washable slipcover and hypoallergenic materials.

Best for all sleeping styles: ComfiLife Lumbar Support Pillow for Sleeping

  • Price: list price of around $37
  • Customer rating: 4.1 out of five stars

ComfiLife states that this pillow may help relieve lower back pain in back, side, and stomach sleepers. People can also place this pillow under their knees or feet.

Additional features include:

  • a memory foam fill
  • dimensions of 27.5 x 15.5 x 1.25 in
  • a breathable and removable soft cover
  • a lifetime warranty

Best for back and side sleepers: DYNMC YOU Lumbar Support Pillow

  • Price: list price of around $25
  • Customer rating: 4.2 out of five stars

This butterfly-shaped pillow may help relieve back pain. The manufacturer states this product is suitable for use while sitting in a chair or when lying on the back and side.

This pillow contains memory foam and OEKO-TEX-certified materials. Other features include:

  • dimensions of 19.69 x 3.54 x 13.78 in
  • a weight of 1.21 pounds
  • machine-washable

Best for the office: Coop Home Goods Lumbar Support Back Cushion

  • Price: $35
  • Customer rating: 4.8 out of five stars

Coop Home Goods states that this cushion may be suitable for individuals with arthritis, people who assume improper posture, and those who work in an office.

The cushion has a firm memory foam with cooling bamboo charcoal and an oversized strap for ease of use.

The company also offers free shipping and returns.

The following table compares the pillows in this article.

DimensionsMaterialCustomer ratingList price
The OPTPfrom 31 x 5 x 5 inno information available4.8 out of five stars$38.50
Gentle Living19.6 x 8.2 x 2.9 inmemory foamno information available$34.99
TruContour10 x 24 x 3 inmemory foamfive out of five stars$59.99
Slumbar Pillowsno information availablememory foamfive out of five stars$79.99
ComfiLife27.5 x 15.5 x 1.25 inmemory foam4.1 out of five starsaround $37
DYNMC YOU19.69 x 3.54 x 13.78 inmemory foam4.2 out of five starsaround $25
Coop Home Goods16.4 x 16 x 4.9 inmemory foam4.8 out of five stars$35

Alternatives that a person can use to support their back in bed instead of a lumbar support pillow include:

  • a foam pool noodle
  • rolled up household towels
  • small throw pillows

A person may also choose to use one of the following methods to treat their low back pain:

If a person has severe pain in their lower back that does not get better over time, they should consult a doctor.

A person should also seek guidance from a doctor if they have low back pain alongside any of the following:

Below, we answer some common questions about lumbar support pillows.

Do lumbar support pillows really work?

A 2015 study notes that lumbar pillows can help relieve back pain and reduce tension in the body.

However, a person should consider how they are intending to use a lumbar support pillow before purchasing one.

For example, some companies may offer pillows that are suitable to sit against while in a chair, and others only offer pillows that are suitable for use while lying down.

How thick should a lumbar pillow be?

A person should choose a lumbar pillow that is a comfortable thickness. Many lumbar pillows are around 4 in wide at their thickest point.

If a pillow is too thin or too thick, a person may experience further back pain.

What is the difference between ergonomic and lumbar support?

A lumbar pillow supports the lower back. Many people place these pillows between their lower back and the mattress.

By contrast, ergonomic pillows support the head, neck, and shoulders. These pillows often contain memory foam and are curved to avoid extra pressure on the spine during sleep.

Getting sufficient lumbar support in bed can help ease low back pain. A variety of good quality lumbar support pillows for sleeping are available.

A person can use a lumbar pillow to support their lower back while they are lying in bed. It may help reduce a person’s low back pain or improve sleep quality.

However, if a person experiences more severe low back pain or has low back pain alongside other health issues, such as difficulty walking or urinary incontinence, they should seek medical attention.