Mattresses, Mattresses Everywhere: Memory Foam

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A good mattress lasts 9 to 10 years, but according to the National Sleep Foundation, you should consider replacing yours every 5 to 7 years if you don’t sleep well. When it’s time to change your mattress, it’s important to keep in mind the many different mattress options there are. In our previous article we discussed the pros and cons of an innerspring mattress and today we’re going to detail memory foam mattresses.

Memory Foam Mattresses

First designed in the mid-1960s for NASA airplane seats, memory foam is made from a substance called viscoelastic. It is both highly energy absorbent and soft and molds to the body, evenly distributing body weight and returns to its original shape once pressure is removed.

If you prefer an extra-firm base for your mattress, memory foam has very little spring and provides support to your head, shoulders, hips, knees and feet while keeping your spine in proper alignment. Resting in a comfortable position all night helps promote a good night’s sleep and ensures that you wake up feeling rested without aches and pain.

Pros

  • Polyurethane foam found in memory foam mattresses is naturally resistant to allergies and dust mites.
  • Memory foam mattresses do not have to be flipped. They do not contain the innersprings that end up sagging after many years of use.
  • Mattress does not creak and whine every time you or your partner adjusts positions throughout the night.

Cons

  • The main complaint is the mattress has a tendency to retain heat. This results in the bed getting hot, especially in warmer weather. However over the years, manufacturers have taken steps to produce foam that is much cooler to sleep on with an open cell structure and channels that allow air to circulate more freely.
  • A number of people found their memory foam mattress to be more firm than expected upon first use, thought he foam softened and became more comfortable as it absorbed body heat.
  • When new, memory foam can produce an odd chemical smell. To minimize this problem, it is recommended to air out the mattress for at least 24 hours before putting sheets on.

It’s important to keep all of this information in mind when picking out a new mattress. Having the right mattress is important not just for maintaining a good night’s rest, but for your overall health as well.