Nothing produces groans from guests quite like having to sleep on a sofa bed. They’re notorious for thin mattresses on top of stiff springs and other hardware, causing sleepers to wake with sore backs and groggy heads. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way!
Whether you’re planning a getaway during which you’ll have to sleep on one, or you’re trying to make your home more accommodating for visitors, there are several tricks to test for how to make a sofa bed more comfortable. Let’s take a look at our five favorites.
1. Add Extra Cushioning
One of the most straightforward uncomfortable sofa bed solutions is to add cushioning to the mattress and the bed itself. It creates a more comfortable sleeping surface.
If your sofa bed mattress is thin, try adding a comfortable mattress topper to provide extra support. Egg crates work fine, but something a bit more advanced, such as a memory foam mattress topper, is even better.
Use Lots of Pillows
Another thing you can do (as a host or a guest) is gather many pillows. Sofa beds tend to have gaps between the back and arms of the couch and the mattress when it’s folded out.
Increase your sleeping space and prevent your limbs from awkwardly occupying those spaces by stuffing pillows into them. If extra pillows aren’t available, use the couch cushions themselves.
2. Use High-Quality Bedding
Nothing can help create a good night’s rest quite like luxurious bedding. If your sofa bed isn’t the most comfortable place to sleep, you can at least enhance the experience with high-quality bedding. For pillows, provide memory foam or other supportive pillows designed for spinal health.
Generally speaking, when it comes to sheets, the higher the thread count, the better. But besides thread count, there are other ways to tailor your sofa bed sheets for a good night’s rest. If the room tends to get warm overnight, consider cooling sheets with moisture-wicking material. If it’s cold, go in the opposite direction.
Provide or have on hand many blanket options. Sleepers should be able to add or subtract blankets to adjust to the temperature of the room and their sleep preferences. Start with a medium-thickness comforter, and offer throw blankets. If the sofa bed is in a basement or cold room, invest in a thermal or even a heated blanket.
This occasion might even be a good time to try a weighted blanket. They have several benefits for sleep and overall health.
3. Keep It Clean and Maintained
Properly maintaining your sofa bed is another way to make it more comfortable for sleeping. Some of these maintenance steps are especially important if you don’t use it as a bed often.
Each time you pull it out, test to make sure the mechanisms hold and no important screws have loosened or anything else is damaged.
Regularly vacuum the mattress, ideally before or after each time it’s used. This will help prevent dust mites and other yucky elements from accumulating and making the mattress smell old and musky. You can also use a hand steamer on the cushions and mattress for a truly deep clean.
If the room itself is damp (which is common during the summer in basements especially) be sure to keep a dehumidifier running and empty it regularly. This not only protects the sofa and the mattress, but the floors and other furniture in the room.
4. Provide Support
If you’re seeking solutions for how to make a pull-out bed more comfortable in your home for guests, one option is to provide additional structural support. The simplest way to do this is by adding a plywood board underneath the mattress itself.
A flat, thin piece of plywood works similarly to a box spring. It provides the sleeper with an extra layer between themselves and the often uncomfortable, awkward springs and mechanics of the sofa’s interior.
You also have the option of replacing the mattress itself. Often, mattresses that come with sofa beds aren’t very high-quality, unless you explicitly purchase them as such. The good news is that many companies make replacement sofa bed mattresses that are much more comfortable. Invest for your guests’ sake!
5. Improve the Overall Sleep Environment
Especially if you’re staying in someone else’s home, these options we’ve discussed for how to make a sofa bed mattress more comfortable might not be possible. Still, there are things you can do to improve your sleep hygiene and better your chances for a good night’s rest.
First, try to make the room as dark and quiet as possible. Close the curtains and the door, and use a white noise app on your phone if that works for you. Avoid screens in the hour before turning in for the night.
Second, avoid drinking alcohol or caffeine in the few hours before bed, as it disrupts your sleep cycle. You can also set up an essential oil diffuser with scents that promote sleep, like lavender, yling yling, and chamomile.
Finally, do what you can to control your body temperature. Try to keep the space cool, and consider showering before bed. Showering allows your body temperature to come up a bit and then gradually fall, which helps your body relax.
If you can’t control the mattress or bedding itself, you at least have these tools at your disposal to feel restored in the morning. Bonus: they’re great tricks for when you’re home, too!
Don’t Lose Sleep Over Losing Sleep
The bottom line? Do what you can to make your sofa bed experience more comfortable, whether it’s for you or for your guests. But don’t let it cause you too much stress; don’t letless the stress itself cost you sleep!
The chances are good that if you’re traveling or enjoying a visit with loved ones, the excitement and adrenaline from the occasion will give you the extra boost of energy you need. Focus on them, and sleep will come easy.