The major purpose of a good mattress is to provide you with a peaceful night. Even though it is important to stay within budget, the one thing you should not compromise with is comfort while sleeping. Going for a cheap mattress which does not give you comfort and you sleep badly every night will drain your bank account in the long run by giving you back pain and other medical conditions. At the same time, you will be sleep-deprived, which can also fall heavily on your daily activities and give rise to mental health problems. That is why we have noted down here the features of the mattresses available in the market so that you can make an informed decision the next time you want to buy one.
Why is it important to use a good mattress
A good night’s sleep is essential for proper cognitive functions, information retention and storage, and most importantly, having enough energy to go about all the tasks you need to perform through the day. While diet, exercise, and sleep-timings play a good part in this, sleeping on the right mattress is equally crucial in order to achieve the refreshing sleep that you require. Sleeping on a good mattress helps you through a number of issues:
Sleeping on a good mattress helps you sleep better, and hence it is proven to have reduced stress in people significantly.
Back and joint pain reduction:
If you are experiencing back and joint pain, your mattress may be at fault. If it is too soft or too firm, it can harm your spine and joints. Your mattress should support each part of your body equally, with your weight distributed over it evenly. Skewed stress on one part of your body means your spine is not supported throughout, and hence the pain. If left untreated, this can give rise to a plethora of other problems too.
The right mattress should hold your body in a straight line for the whole night so that your body is aligned in the correct manner. Plus it should relieve pressure points and support your posture, which will help inhibit pain.
After you leave your bed in the morning, the sweat left on your mattress becomes the breeding ground for dust mites. A mattress consisting of natural components and having a dense structure prevents allergens from accumulating, so you stay disease-free.
Lastly, comfort matters the most when it comes to sleeping. If you keep tossing and turning throughout the night, it also disturbs your partner sleeping alongside you. So you need to choose a firm mattress which prevents these motion waves as well as provides you with the comfort you need for the right sleep.
Which mattress is the best
There is no one good choice for a mattress, you will need to choose what suits you the best – in terms of both comfort and alignment. To recognize that, you need to understand the main types of mattresses found in the market.
Innerspring or coil mattresses have been the most commonly sold mattresses for about a century. They are constructed of steel coils individually enclosed inside cushions. These compress when you put weight on them. Depending on the shape, size, and a number of coils, there are a number of variants of this kind of mattress available – continuous coil, Bonnell, offset, and marshall or pocketed coil.
- Benefits: As a general rule, more coils mean higher quality and more support. Therefore, this type of mattress is sturdy and durable and allows better motion transfer support. These are the most conveniently obtainable and affordable ones as well, making them so popular.
- Drawbacks: These tend to wear out easily. On top of that, they are more springy and bouncy, and some variants of them make a lot of squeaky noise, which can be really annoying.
- Who should opt for them: These are ideal for side and stomach sleepers. These offer more convenience of movement in and out of bed, making them quite beneficial for really overweight people. Some variants have dense innerspring and cushion support which is beneficial for people with back pain as well as pregnant or lactating women.
Natural latex is a byproduct of sap from a rubber tree, so latex mattresses are considered to be eco mattresses. If you are looking for a natural bedding solution, look for organic natural latex mattresses, as opposed to synthetic latex which is not so eco-friendly. Latex foam mattresses provide firm and bouncy support uniformly throughout the bed.
- Benefits: Latex mattresses are really durable – some of their warranties are known to last up to twenty years. They are firm, yet very comfortable. They are cooler, more resilient; and maintain their shape together with absorbing movements, letting people sleep together peacefully. Some forms of natural latex mattresses also have anti-allergen properties and being organic, feature the least off-gassing of all.
- Drawbacks: The major downside of latex mattresses is their cost, even though they add quite the value for those extra dollars. Besides, they are heavier; making them difficult to move, which some people may consider as a disadvantage.
- Who should opt for them: Latex mattresses are the best combination of support and comfort, and hence, are the best for relieving pain.
When you think of airbeds, the first image that comes to your mind is the blow-up mattresses your grandfather used to take for camping. It is time you change that picture because technology has come a long way since then. Modern-day air mattresses look like standard innerspring mattresses, but use air-filled chambers instead of coils, and are covered by a foam layer on top. The best part is, they do not even sag over time like any other mattress out there.
- Benefits: The best feature of airbeds is their split-side option – they have the separate right and left chambers and the two sides can be set to two sleeping partners’ separate sleeping preferences. The building material is PVC which minimizes and often completely nullifies off-gassing as well.
- Drawbacks: The issue lies in assembling the mattress which can take a long time, and it is expensive too because of the high-end technology that is used in it. Moreover, the settings need to be done correctly, otherwise it can be harmful to your back instead of giving you comfort.
- Who should opt for them: Airbeds are one of the few options that anyone can go for as the pressure setting can be adapted to anyone’s priorities. They work best for injured patients who need to spend a long time in bed since they allow you to change the pressure of the mattress at any point.
- Waterbed mattresses are the oldest kind out there. A waterbed consists of a chamber of water padded with foam or fibres. The water can be in a free-flow chamber where it moves freely from one side of the mattress to the other, or a limited-flow “waveless” chamber, where fibres limit the water’s movement.
- Benefits: Waterbeds have been used for centuries for supporting the back better. In addition, waveless waterbed mattresses can be separated into chambers like airbeds specific to two sleeping partners’ preferences.
- Drawbacks: You have to maintain the right heat level in these mattresses at all times which will cost you electricity. What is more, the disassembling and assembling is a long process which makes these terribly inconvenient for moving. There is always the probability of puncture and leakage also.
- Who should opt for them: Waterbeds are best for back sleepers.
Originally invented by NASA for aircraft cushion safety, memory foam is now used everywhere, including mattresses, and they are getting hugely popular day by day. These are made of layers of different densities of foam that respond to weight and temperature. What makes memory foam so special is that it contours to the specific shape of your body making it extremely comfortable, and also bounces back to its initial form easily once the weight is lifted.
- Benefits: Almost all the benefits you expect your mattress to have, memory foam contains them all. Along with comfort, it offers pressure point relief and hence, pain relief, correct spinal alignment in any sleeping position, pain prevention, little to no motion transfer, as well as resistance to dust mites and allergens. Because of their special feature, they do not even sag.
- Drawbacks: The only major limitation of memory foam is that being temperature sensitive, they contain the body heat in them, and can make you feel excessively hot during the night. If not cared for regularly, they might emit unpleasant odour too after a point.
- Who should opt for them: If the temperature rise does not bother you, memory foam is the most comfortable mattress you can opt for. Especially, if you have chronic fatigue issues, or muscle pain, or are a restless sleeper, memory foam will help you out.
In case the temperature troubles you, alternatively you may use Gel mattresses. These have all the features of a memory foam mattress, except gel is infused into the memory foam to reduce its affinity towards trapping heat. However, they may be slightly more expensive than their memory foam counterparts because of this extra feature.
As the name suggests, hybrid mattresses are a combination of some or all of the material mentioned above. You can totally customize them up to your specifications. They are getting increasingly popular these days because of this flexibility they offer – you get the best of both worlds. Having said that, also because of the same versatility, they are costlier.
How to choose the right mattress for you
Now that you are equipped with a comprehensive knowledge of the major mattress types, keep them in mind while buying a new one for yourself. Here is how you choose the best one for yourself –
- Do not trust any label pasted on a mattress by any seller as “orthopedic” or “medically-approved” – there is no particular medical association that approves mattresses.
- The best way to check if a mattress will tend to your needs is by lying on them for 10 to 15 minutes. This way you can be sure of the support it can offer on every sleeping position. Online shopping for mattresses is not really smart as you cannot test them.
- Many retailers offer a “comfort guarantee” period. Ask for it before you buy, and be sure to understand all the details about shipping charges, a money-back guarantee, or an exchange, time-frame of so, etc.
- A good mattress will have a minimum of a 10-year full replacement or non-prorated warranty. Do not forget to request for it.
- Be sure to shop only at a store specialized in mattresses where all the varieties will be available.
- If you have a medical condition, definitely check with your doctor before visiting the mattress store.
When considering mattresses, options are many; you need to understand which one will keep you happy at night. Follow the tips mentioned above, and it will not be that difficult a task for you. Nevertheless, make sure to go to a certified mattress seller with expert and knowledgeable salespeople who can guide you in the right direction.