One of the biggest questions that mattress owners have is “How often should I replace my mattress?” There are a few commonly cited “rules” in regards to this question, however, they should not be taken as absolute. Some people believe that a mattress should be replaced every eight years, every decade, or even every couple of years. The answer, as with many things relating to sleep, is a mixture of basic guidelines designed to help you figure out your comfort level and personal preference.
It’s important to note that every mattress will age differently, which is part of why it’s difficult to assign a set amount of time in which you need to replace the mattress. Some mattresses are used nightly, as in a master bedroom, while others are used less often in situations like guest bedrooms. Obviously, a bed that is slept on very rarely should last a lot longer than one that is regularly used. Children’s mattresses may need to be replaced more often, because, let’s face it, jumping on the bed happens as soon as the adults leave the room.
One major factor in how long a mattress will last is whether or not proper care was taken to clean and maintain the boxspring and mattress set, as well as the quality of the mattress itself. While you can often find a cheap mattress that performs just as well as an expensive one at the date of purchase, the quality difference will begin to show with time. Oftentimes the key reason for a mattresses longevity or lack thereof is the level of care that went into building the mattress itself. This is why it’s important to balance price with quality and to find a reasonable middle ground between the two.
Questions to Consider Before Replacing Your Mattress
The most important thing to consider when thinking about whether or not to replace your mattress is your personal comfort level. Our bodies are constantly changing and need varying levels of support as we grow older, and personal preferences change with time. Over the course of a few years you may find that while your mattress is still in decent condition, it just isn’t comfortable for you anymore. I’ve compiled a few questions for you to consider before deciding if it’s time to replace your mattress.
Are You Sleeping Better or Worse Than This Time Last Year?
This is a fairly obvious one, but if you are simply not sleeping as well as you used to, it could be a sign that it’s time to change your mattress. Of course, there are other factors that come into play in regards to how well you sleep, but your mattress is a major part in your overall restfulness. Consider keeping a weekly or monthly sleep journal to help you track how well you have been sleeping. This can benefit you in a few different ways, as well as allow you to decide if the quality of your mattress is fading over time. Sleep is important, and when we don’t get enough of it, our lives are impacted in numerous negative ways.
Do You Wake up Feeling Stiff or Sore?
The way that we sleep can have a huge impact on how we feel the next day. If you have been experiencing aches and pains but can’t pinpoint the root cause, it may be time to examine that old mattress. Sometimes, as a mattress wears out, it becomes less effective at evenly distributing the weight of our bodies as we sleep. This causes the mattress to wear down faster and can cause issues in the body due to particular points on the back having uneven amounts of pressure overnight.
Are There Visible Signs of Wear & Tear?
While some visible signs of wear & tear are only cosmetic and don’t need to be worried about, others can signify that a mattress is beginning to degrade structurally. Look for things such as permanent indentations in the surface of the mattress, raised spots, or lumps. These visible signs all show that the mattress is wearing out internally and is no longer doing its job of providing proper support to your body while you sleep. You should check for these things at least twice a year, which is about as often as you should be cleaning the mattress anyways.
If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, it’s a good sign that it may be time to start looking for a new mattress. By keeping these questions in mind and regularly checking for the signs that it’s time to replace your mattress, you can avoid many of the problems that come with using a mattress that’s worn out. It’s better to know ahead of time that your mattress is beginning to show signs of aging than to be rushed into purchasing a new mattress because of sleep or health problems.