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It is not uncommon that when traditional beds that include a box spring and mattress are worn out and uncomfortable you will see deep body impressions within the mattress surface. Does that mean my mattress thinks I’m fat? However, Memory foam mattresses don’t use coils and are well known to leave your body imprint in them yet they spring back to their original form almost instantly. So, not all body impressions in mattresses are a bad sign.
Our worst nightmare comes to life each and every morning after waking up and getting out of bed. Our memory foam mattress, of all things, reminds us who we really are. That’s right we wake up only to witness our own body imprint silently lying there, showing us evidence in 3D that I may have put on a few pounds. That is when the realization kicked in that I should without a doubt, walk straight past the refrigerator and head immediately to the gym. Seriously with a mattress like that why give up the tried and true mattress and box spring for what seems to be nothing more than an expensive slab of foam claiming to have memory–whatever that means?
Well, it turns out that pesky little momentary body impression is proof that memory foam mattresses actually contour and mold to the body like no other mattress since the inception of the waterbed. Through near-perfect displacement of weight, people experience fewer pressure points on the critical areas of the body, such as shoulders and hips, which in comparison to a mattress containing coil springs, is completely opposite. Coil springs made of steel have a propensity to push back against our skin causing restlessness and turning throughout the night. Viscoelastic memory foam claims to diminish those annoying firm spots that can develop on our bodies during the sleep process as pressure points and it appears to decrease morning soreness, aches, and pains.
Even more amazing is the fact that when you turn over you do not disturb your bed companion–but were getting ahead of ourselves. Memory foams roots stem from a material that NASA invented and Tempur-Pedic® perfected, which was later made and claimed to be even better with iComfort by Serta. It was initially intended that this new material, that was later called memory foam, would curtail the vibrations and shaking felt by astronauts throughout their space travels and encourage better blood circulation during lift-off.
A group of Swedish physicians found a way to make this material into a mattress and thanks to Tempur-Pedic®, all can experience this Swedish comfort. Industry insiders believe that by simply reducing the tossing and turning caused by our partner’s restlessness, we can improve our quality of sleep by 20% through memory foam products. There are many mattresses to choose from that include gel foam, plush foam, support foam and cool gel memory foam for the ultimate in comfort and body contouring. These mattresses wrap you in comfort all through the night for a great night’s sleep and they dampen your sleeping partner’s movements, so you are not disturbed. The National Sleep Foundation recommends these mattresses with memory foam that are more giving to lead to better sleep in people with something as severe as back pain or a minor as morning achiness.
The most recognizable brand name memory foam mattress today is Tempur-Pedic®, although Serta iComfort has followed suit in making and even improving the memory foam mattress, they have done so with special proprietary cooling gel foam. Memory foam mattresses first made an appearance on A&E and The History Channels’ popular TV show Modern Marvels. With effective marketing and infomercials, Visco elastic memory foam mattresses have literally become a household name. Through an advertisement that includes a wine glass that doesn’t spill, which helps to demonstrate why you won’t wake up your sleeping partner when turning over. Then on to an exhibit of an egg that doesn’t break when thrown against a mattress, effectively displaying its energy absorption ability. Lastly, they use a gigantic, weighty, breakdown roller in the attempt to smash down The memory foam mattress, showing that it is the ultimate display of memory foam’s durability and strength.
Through 21st-century mattress technology, memory foam has definitively changed the way we sleep. But more importantly, there seems to be real evidence showing ease in health-related issues such as headaches, minor muscle aches and pressure points that cause numbness and morning fatigue. It seems plausible that, if these problems could be reduced, or cured by the memory foam mattresses, a great many more people suffering from minor insomnia may also benefit as a result. Not to mention that viscoelastic foam mattresses are also especially defiant to mold & mildew, bacteria, and dust mites. This point on its own is a great quality in any type of mattress, especially for allergy sufferers. Dr. Donna Arand, MD is a sleep specialist and she believes that memory foam mattresses can be very beneficial to older people in minimizing extra movement to reduce the number of times they awake during the night and that they will get more hours of sleep because of this fact.
At one time or another, most of us have experienced a squeaky, loud, annoying mattress. However, foam products such as latex and all memory foam mattresses will not make noises because they do not use coil springs in the bed’s construction. Better quality construction and high-quality foam eliminate the need to flip the mattress which has all but disappeared with the brand name mattresses anyway. In theory, this may be a great advantage for consumers because they don’t need to flip the mattress and turn it end to end to make it more comfortable due to uneven wear. The memory foam mattresses are considered a one-sided mattress, as it is built from the bottom up to the top layer. In comparison, a traditional mattress has metal coils in the center and it has padding on both sides to be flipped occasionally.
In the beginning, all memory foam was temperature reactive meaning Memory foam mattresses reacted to temperatures. In warmer areas, such as upstairs or bedrooms in the attic, you could experience a softer feel due to a warmer climate in the room. Cooler basements have the opposite effect on memory foam and cause the mattress to be firmer and less flexible. Today more and more memory foam is becoming temperature neutral meaning it does not react to temperatures for a more consistent feel regardless of room or household temperature. The bottom line in the average house, a memory foam mattress will perform well to reduce the average number of times you turn over in a night and increase your quality of sleep, so it’s no wonder that this is the fastest-growing area of mattresses today.
The longevity of any mattress depends on several factors. The life expectancy of various memory foam mattresses can range from only a few years and up to 20 years depending on the exact manufacturing process and the quality of the products inside the mattress. So the average life of a memory foam mattress is approximately 7-10 years. Memory foam has an open-cell structure to absorb and disperse pressure and energy throughout all of the material as it discharges to air and conforms to the body. Then the material springs back to its original form after you get out of bed. This doesn’t mean it will spring back to form forever, but it should last you 2 to 3 times over cheaper mattresses and box springs that give a comfortable life about 2-5 years when you can noticeably see the mattress starting to break down and deteriorate.
Whether a person chooses firm or soft density memory foam with higher or lower IFD (Initial Force Deflection), durability simply does not appear to be the question and nearly all people can find a memory foam mattress to fit their sleeping habits.
We are only now beginning to understand how sleep, or the lack of it, really affects us. But, with various health benefits, innovative, long-lasting material, great support, and luxurious comfort, it is no wonder that people will want to remember memory foam when purchasing their next mattress.