Everything You Need to Know When Buying a Mattress
A good night’s sleep goes far beyond resting the body to recover the energy spent during the day. It is a physiological need, is essential to stay healthy, improves the quality of life and even increases longevity. During night-time rest, the body performs extremely important functions, such as cell regeneration, production of certain hormones, strengthening the immune system, and consolidating memory and learning.
To sleep peacefully and to ensure that all the functions performed during the night by the body are carried out successfully, a good mattress is a fundamental item. Using the wrong mattress can cause discomfort at night, in addition to muscle pain, cramps, poor circulation of blood, and tingling, causing micro awakenings or even insomnia.
Choosing the Best Mattress:
On average, every person spends a third of their life sleeping, so choosing a quality mattress and a suitable pillow is very important to ensure a good night's sleep and proper rest; because when we sleep well, we are much more productive the next day.
Choosing the right mattress is what will ensure that you have a good night's sleep. When buying a mattress, you should consider factors such as your weight, whether you have back problems, or even allergies. Balance is everything when it comes to deciding about a mattress. For this reason, the mattress must yield to follow the curvature of the body and the pillow must allow the neck to be straight.
The truth is, a good mattress must not be so hard that it hurts your body, or so soft that you feel like you're lying on a pillow. It should follow the curve of your spine to provide you with rest while you sleep. However, if you often suffer from back pain, a medium-density mattress is a great choice. Heavier people if they prefer, can opt for a firmer mattress, to ensure better support.
Several indicators can help you in the initial mission of identifying whether your current mattress needs to be replaced. Among them are issues such as discomfort in bed while sleeping; waking up with back pain, neck pain, and stiffness; a noticeable increase in allergy symptoms; and product surface wear (signs of sagging, bulges, bumps, holes, and/or tears).
What to Keep in Mind when Choosing or Buying a Mattress?
Buying a mattress is somewhat tricky and not always an easy task. There are so many possibilities that you probably already have doubts about which is the best option. Among the various possibilities when choosing a good mattress, there are a few fundamental characteristics that must be considered, namely:
Quality and comfort of the mattress:
Perhaps the most important items on this list are quality and comfort. Always look for the seal of quality which will vary, depending on the materials and technologies used by the manufacturer. For comfort level select a mattress that is not too soft or too hard. It needs to be flexible to ensure joint comfort and, at the same time, firm enough to provide the necessary support for the spine and your entire body weight.
Durability it offers:
Durability is another point that requires special attention. We know that mattresses have an expiration date according to the materials and technologies used in their manufacture. A worn mattress can have deformities, holes, and unevenness, which are very harmful to the spine.
Density as per weight and height:
Density is one of the most important factors for the accommodation of the organism. The higher the density, the more weight the mattress supports. Therefore, when choosing the ideal mattress for you, consult the biotype table to find the density that corresponds to your weight and height.
Finishing fabrics must have anti-allergic, anti-fungal, and anti-mite treatment. The main mattress cover materials are synthetic, mixed, and natural fibers.
In general, there are four main types (and many sub-types) of mattresses namely, foam, spring, Viscoelastic, and latex. Each one has a particular feature and functionality that must be adapted to your needs at the time of purchase.
Values should be evaluated when investing in a good mattress, considering that this is an acquisition that will be used for the long term. There are several types of mattresses with affordable prices, so you should analyze the set as a whole.
Certification and Warranty:
The mattresses’ useful life and durability must be ascertained before buying a mattress, as it will have to be changed as soon as it expires, to avoid loss of quality and consequential damage to health.
At the time of purchase, it is very important to thoroughly observe and decide on the type of mattress you need to buy. The choices are: a single or a double, a spring or foam mattress and even analyzing the density of the material.
Types of Mattresses with Differences:
There are several types of mattresses on the market, with many differences between them, including the manufacturing material. The composition of the mattress needs to meet the consumer ‘s taste as it is a very personal decision.
You need to know about the various types of mattresses that are available so you can decide which one suits you best, according to your requirements. If you think that the best way to find the ideal mattress is to go to a store, look at the models available and test them for yourself, to decide which is most comfortable. The fact is that you will probably be only 50 percent right. Knowing the differences between mattress types has a huge impact on choosing the ideal model.
- Foam Mattress - the most used type of mattress
Probably the first type of mattress that comes to your mind is the foam mattress, which is the most popular and has the lowest price. Because it is a little denser, it offers better support for the spine, which is great for those who suffer from back pain – if you are careful and buy a product with the correct density for you. This type of mattress comes in the widest range of models, which on the one hand serves a wider audience, and on the other, offers a greater difference between one model and another; in terms of price, quality, and density.
- Spring Mattress - a mixture of comfort and quality
If you are looking for comfort and quality, this is the best type of mattress. Spring mattresses respond better to the pressure that comes from the weight of your body, as they practically mold themselves to it and provide greater comfort. They have a different relationship with density. There are no model options for each person’s weight and size, but a maximum is recommended for each subtype.
- Viscoelastic Mattress - better known as Nasa foam
Mattresses with Viscoelastic technology can absorb practically all the force exerted by a body’s weight on the structure without exerting backpressure, which generates an unbeatable level of comfort. This property of viscoelastic also helps blood circulation, which is even more interesting. Another point that draws attention to viscoelastic mattresses is thermal comfort since the material is affected to a lesser extent by external temperature. People who have allergies, also find it a great option.
- Latex Mattress - Temperature stabilizers
Lesser known among the different types available, latex models are usually only found in specialized stores. Latex is the type of foam with the highest quality and boasts 100 percent natural production. The models have greater durability, being able to last for up to 15 years without major problems, as well as offering the greatest level of thermal comfort. In terms of comfort, latex beats the foam models but does not surpass spring and memory foam mattresses.
Less Common Types of Mattresses - A Quick Informative Guide:
There are also other types of mattresses that are less common and not so suitable for everyday use. They are as follows:
Water Mattress: A water mattress is nothing more than a plastic structure filled with water, which is similar to an air mattress but with the added benefit of being softer. This type of mattress is recommended for bedridden people with bedsores.
Air Mattress: Air mattresses, better known as inflatable mattresses, are a low-cost plastic mattress, that when inflated is a soft and clumsy structure.
Horsehair Mattress: Horsehair is a material with high ventilation and differentiated softness, but its use in mattresses is just to provide a pillow top and upholstery finish, with its main structure being springs or foam. Horsehair is one of the most sophisticated raw materials for making luxury mattresses.
Cotton Mattress: Cotton and organic cotton are soft and breathable raw materials, but their use is only linked to pillow tops or fabric finishing. Some international brands use this type of raw material a lot.
Animal Wool Mattress: Yes, in the same way that there is the mattress with horsehair, sheep wool, alpacas, llamas and even camel hair can be found in the market. Pillow mattresses made of this raw material are considered a luxury but nowadays many people reject the use of this type of mattress.
Magnetic Mattress: Magnetic mattresses are normal mattresses like any of those mentioned above, but use magnets in their composition; as, according to their manufacturers, they have the power to help fight some diseases.
The Best Mattress for the Spine and/or Backaches:
If you're having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep due to back pain, here’s a tip: your mattress could be the culprit. The main cause of back pain is often poor posture, whether it's the way you sit at work or the way you sleep at night. Most people know that posture is important, but they only think about their posture in the context of standing and sitting. This can cause them to overlook the importance of having a proper mattress, based on their body shape, weight, and sleeping position.
What many don't know is that between the vertebrae of the spine are intervertebral discs, which rehydrate at night (therefore we are taller in the morning and part of the reason seniors lose height as they age). In this scenario, poor posture can prevent the discs from rehydrating.
Attached to the vertebra are smaller muscle groups (like the erector spinae) and large muscles (like the trapezius). Poor posture can put muscles in awkward positions, which can cause irritation for a prolonged period which consequently results in pain.
When it comes to choosing the right mattress, it is important to keep in mind a model that provides the right support for your spine. A mattress that is too hard can put a lot of pressure on the areas where you feel uncomfortable, while a mattress that is too soft doesn't provide support for the areas that need it — which allows your spine to spend long periods in bad, unhealthy positions.
The right mattress should make you feel like you're floating on air. Of course, the perfect mattress is a matter of personal preference, but certain properties must exist for it to be healthy for your back. Here are the top three things to look out for when buying or reviewing mattress quality:
- The mattress needs to support your entire body when in a neutral position with proper spine alignment.
- It should not be too firm so as not put pressure on the main pressure points of the spine.
- It shouldn’t be so soft that it doesn’t leave your pressure points unsupported by creating curvature in the spine.
The truth is that there is no ideal best mattress for the spine, but there is an ideal mattress for every person, that suits the person's biotype and can provide the support that the body needs during resting times; as well as sufficient sleeping time. For example, for people with back problems, technological mattresses are the most suitable.
An important point to consider when choosing a good mattress for the spine is to look for one that offers quality certification, permanent technical assistance and has been developed on a scientific orthopedic basis to guarantee the best treatment for the spine.
Thus, checking the natural curvature of the spine, the rigidity of the abdomen, or even the health of the vertebrae via a medical examination is always essential. If you have the right mattress, specific to your spine, you can achieve an even better quality of life and consequent reduction of pain.
Mattress Types for the Elderly - Respect their Limitations
We know how difficult it is to choose a mattress for the elderly. In addition to being important to observe aspects such as comfort and safety, it is also necessary to consider other factors to meet the needs that determine the health conditions of the elderly person.
The choice of mattress must take into consideration whether the elderly person is bedridden, suffers from a problem with the spine, or has some limitation of movement, among other particularities, which will serve as a parameter when one is making a decision on the ideal model.
It is possible to find different models of mattresses for the elderly. In general, they must meet the needs of comfort, hygiene, safety, and practicality. Thus, it is important to know the function of each of them to make the correct choice.
Because they are anatomically designed, orthopedic mattresses are ideal for the elderly, especially for those with spinal problems, such as herniated discs, scoliosis, sciatic nerve pain, or postural changes. The right shape helps to relax the joints and reduces pressure on them during sleep, as it distributes the body's weight better.
This is the one most recommended for elderly people with limited mobility who are bedridden, and therefore have to stay in the same position for a long time. This condition causes interruptions in blood circulation to some parts of the body and can lead to pressure ulcers or bed sores. A pneumatic mattress has individualized pressure cells, which stimulate blood circulation through low-intensity massage, regulated by an air compressor. In this way, they relieve excessive pressure on different areas of the body.
A mattress with massaging properties is constructed in such a way as to include the application of magnets that have on average, 800 Gauss of magnetic force. These elements are inserted into a profiled foam layer (Rabatan), with structures in relief on its surface, which resemble small fingers — which provides a feeling of self-massage during rest.
Choosing a Mattress for the Elderly - The Caring Factors:
Height: the mattress must have a maximum height of 28 centimeters. This is essential to avoid serious falls when the person is getting up.
Support on the Sides: it is important that the mattress offers this support so they can sit down.
Anti-mite Treatment: It is essential that the mattress fabric has this type of treatment so that mites do not cause or worsen respiratory problems.
Again, it is important to emphasize that, at this age, a medical opinion is essential to choose the ideal mattress for the elderly. Sleeping well is essential for a healthy old age. Therefore, choosing the right mattress for the elderly is fundamental!
Healthy Mattress Choice for Children - A Matter that Matters!
The choice of mattress for children should be made very carefully, as the quality of sleep is directly related to physical and mental health in the development phase. It is during this period of rest that organs, muscles, and bones develop.
Choosing a suitable mattress should be done with great care to ensure that the product provides good support for the child’s posture. In addition, it must provide safety and have hypoallergenic properties. In this sense, before buying the mattress, it is essential to observe several aspects to ensure the health and wellbeing of the child. Here are the main points to consider!
Avoid Spring Mattress
Until the age of eight, children do not have the bone structure necessary to sleep on spring mattresses because the springs in the mattress have a lot of resistance and return the absorbed impact. Foam materials are softer and better distribute weight, like the memory foam mattress, known as NASA, which balances body pressure evenly across its surface. In this way, there are no high compressions at specific points such as the head, shoulders, or waist.
Check for Proper Density
This is the aspect that deserves more attention, as it directly influences the quality of sleep. Density is what defines the firmness level of the mattress and children have different needs according to their growth stage. To ensure adequate support for the body, the mattress must be age appropriate. The bearing capacity is measured by its density, which refers to the amount of foam used in the product.
Observe the Ideal Size
The size of children's mattresses is the one that most varies among the available options. From a crib to a mattress for bigger children, this aspect is designed with the bed type chosen in mind.
Examine the Features
The mattress surface must be flat and without reliefs (embroideries), so that it can provide the perfect accommodation for the body. Another aspect to be observed is the existence of plastic as a coating. Although this type of material makes cleaning easier, it is not recommended because it causes heat and discomfort. For this purpose, it is preferable to purchase a protective cover that allows it to be removed for washing.
Benefits of Sleeping on the Floor:
Sleeping on the hard floor is becoming more common because some people say it helps with back pain, while others just find it more comfortable.
Sleeping on a hard, straight surface is good for your back, and can be helpful in combating even the aches and pains you've experienced over the years. Of course, sleeping on a soft bed is comfortable, but the mattress can start to sag over time, leading to spinal curvatures and back pain. In fact, medical experts even recommend putting plywood under your mattress if it's too soft. Sleeping on the floor keeps the spine aligned and prevents the body from adopting an unnatural position.
When we sleep in the correct position and our spine has the necessary support, it is much easier to keep the back in the correct posture throughout the day. By sleeping on the floor, we can correct wrong postures, and when the back doesn't hurt, we don't feel the need to adopt a hunched position.
Those who sleep on the floor have an increase in blood flow, as the body's weight is evenly distributed, exerting less pressure on different parts of the body. Adopting a natural sleeping position still prevents the tingling sensation caused by poor circulation.
If you have trouble leaving the comfort of pillows and sheets in the morning, know that you are not alone. Many people struggle with the alarm clock and can't resist the temptation to hit the "Snooze" button. But when you sleep on the floor, it's easier to improve your sleep quality, and you won't be so comfortable that you want to stay in bed all day.