Can You Use an Air Bed on an Adjustable Bed? A Detailed Guide with Pros and Cons
Adjustable beds have long been associated with the elderly or people with mobility limitations. While this was once their principal use, adjustable beds have gained popularity and are now used by people of all ages for their health and lifestyle benefits. In this article, we discuss whether you can use an air bed on an adjustable bed frame.
Use an adjustable air bed on an adjustable bed frame. Adjustable air beds are designed to bend and flex while remaining structurally sound because they feature multiple inflatable chambers. They can contour to a sleeper and support different parts of the body with variable pressure zones. Alternative mattresses that can be used on an adjustable bed include memory foam mattresses, latex foam mattresses, traditional innerspring mattresses.
Foam mattresses are the best type of mattress for an adjustable base due to their flexibility. Innerspring mattresses and air beds can be used on adjustable bases but do not flex as easily. In some air mattresses, the bending of an adjustable base might limit airflow, making the mattress too rigid to flex easily. If you prefer your air bed to be softer, an adjustable base might not be the ideal choice for you. Read our article on how to choose a mattress topper for a hospital bed to learn more about customizing your comfort level when using an adjustable bed.
What is an Adjustable Bed?
An adjustable bed is a type of bed that can move and bend to offer a choice of sitting or lying positions. It allows for the sleeper to move parts of the bed into a position that best supports the natural curvature of the spine.
Adjustable beds are available in a variety of configurations and sizes such as king, queen, twin, and full. You can even choose a split king or split queen to allow each sleeping partner to control their side of the bed and choose their own position. An adjustable bed is ideal for post-operative recovery. This article from the Annals of Surgery, reviews why raising an adjustable bed into a sitting position assists with patient recovery.
How Does An Adjustable Bed Frame Work?
An adjustable bed frame consists of an adjustable base, which allows you to customize your bed’s alignment so that you sleep more comfortably. It also makes it easier for people to get in and out of bed.
An adjustable bed frame has a number of joints that rotate at different percentages allowing the base to move independently from the mattress to achieve different positions.
Most basic adjustable bases feature two settings to raise or drop the upper or lower portion of the mattress while keeping the middle of the mattress in a horizontal position. For example, if you need to keep your head slightly upright owing to acid reflux, heartburn, or sleep apnea, you can simply raise the head portion of the base. If you are concerned about edema or water retention, the adjustable base settings allow you to raise your legs above your body and head. Because the adjustable bed's joints are all motorized, a remote control is used to create the perfect position. Keep in mind that people with complex health conditions who need attention from a caregiver, are likely to need a more specialized hospital bed for home care.
What is an Adjustable Air Mattress?
Not all mattresses are created equal, and some are incompatible with adjustable beds. The finest mattress for an adjustable bed is one that bends smoothly, fits perfectly in the frame, and doesn't 'ruck up' when the mechanics are turned on.
An adjustable air mattress has adjustable pressure systems with foam comfort and contouring layers. It can be used permanently with an adjustable base in a bedroom or guest room. The adjustable air mattress can be inflated and deflated to achieve the desired firmness for optimal comfort.
Can You Use An Air Bed On An Adjustable Bed?
Because every detail matters when it comes to sleep, a mattress should support you well enough to maintain the neutral alignment of your spine. When choosing a mattress for an adjustable bed, it should bend with the base while still laying flat on it.
An air bed can be used on an adjustable bed because it combines a support core of multiple air chambers with foam comfort and contouring layers. It allows a user to adjust the firmness, as needed. Alternative mattresses for adjustable beds include memory foam, innerspring and latex mattresses.
An adjustable air mattress is made of air chambers, which allow you to adjust your head, feet, and lumbar sections to the precise level of support you require. You can increase or decrease the amount of air in each zone until you reach the ideal settings for your sleep style. Read our article about how to inflate an air bed, so that you can achieve the ideal level of firmness. Alternatively, you want to take a look at these common air bed dangers and how to fix them to make sure that everyone can safely sleep at night.
Disadvantages of Using an Air Bed On An Adjustable Bed Frame
The most important consideration when choosing the type of mattress to use on an adjustable bed, is the flexibility and durability of it, because the movement of the frame might pinch the material of your air mattress in between the mechanisms, causing damage. Placing a high amount of pressure on a small section of an air mattress can cause holes and tears. If your air bed does have a hole or tear then read our article on how to fix an air bed leak. Additionally, you may want to learn what to do if an air bed is not inflating so make sure to take a look at our step-by-step guide too.
Adjustable air mattresses are more costly. In order for an adjustable bed to work properly, you generally need a special mattress that can accommodate the adjustments. This makes your typical price tag for an adjustable air mattress significantly higher. But very often the higher cost can be justified by the health and medical benefits that these types of mattresses offer. This alternating air pressure mattress for an adjustable bed with a durable nylon fabric cover costs around $450 and has a weight capacity of 350 pounds.
The bending of an adjustable base can restrict the airflow in certain air bed mattresses, which can cause the mattress to be too rigid to bend and flex with ease. Adjusting the inflation level of the air mattress may help to make the mattress less rigid.
Heavier mattresses can place considerable strain on adjustable bases, potentially causing faster wear of both the base and the mattress. Choosing a medical air mattress will ensure that the combined weight of the mattress and the person using it, won’t overwhelm the bed frame. To learn more about the weight limits of various air beds read our comprehensive guide on air mattress weight limits.
Additionally, you may be interested in our related article explaining how to choose between an air bed vs memory foam mattress. Make sure to check it out to find out. Also, you'll want to read our complete guide to air bed alternatives for more ideas.
Commercially Available Air Mattresses for Adjustable Beds
Below is a list of commercially available air mattresses for adjustable beds:
|Air Mattress with Link||Compatible with Adjustable Bed Frame?||Approximate Price|
|Night Air, 10" Adjustable Number Mattress,||Compatible with adjustable bed frames, containing two to six air chambers||~$1800 to ~$2500|
|Night Air, 13" Adjustable Number Mattress||Compatible with an adjustable bed frame with an adjustable firmness system||~$2200 to ~$2700|
|REM Air System Compatible with Sleep Number | Select Comfort and Other Name Brands||Compatible with an adjustable bed frame||~$330|
|Medical MedAir Mattress Digital with Remote Control||Compatible with a digital air inflation system and adjustable firmness system||~ $600|
|Med Aire Low Air Loss Mattress with Alternating Pressure||Compatible with adjustable bed frame||~ $440|