How do you feel when you first wake up in the morning? Are you comfortable and refreshed, or do you feel as if you just spent the night in a wheelbarrow full of gravel? You might not know it, but the quality of your mattress directly impacts the general quality of your life. The healthier your mattress, the better your chance of leading a healthy life. Here’s why.
Your mattress can adversely affect your health
You might not see them, but dust mites, pathogens, mold, and bacteria may be lurking in your mattress. These and other microscopic bugaboos can contribute mightily to a bad night’s sleep and a feeling of unwellness when you wake up. The older your mattress, the bigger the chance that your bedding system is infested.
Dust mites and bed bugs are some of the most common critters to infest mattresses. They can get into your pillows, sheets, and blankets, too. Dust mites are known asthma triggers, and bed bugs cause red bites that itch. It doesn’t take many mites to trigger an asthma attack, and asthma can be fatal.
Strip the bedding and vacuum the mattress every week to significantly reduce a dust mite population. Airing the mattress regularly can alleviate a mold problem. Bed bugs are another story and may require intervention by an exterminator.
It’s not only little lurking things that can contribute to a bad night’s sleep and ill health. Sagging springs and worn out foam cause a sleeper to toss and turn throughout the night. Each time the sleeper moves due to discomfort, they wake up. Even a slight awakening during the night can make a major disruption in the quality of the sleep cycle.
Your mattress can positively affect your health, too
A relatively new bedding system that offers proper to your spine and other body parts will allow you an undisturbed night’s sleep that provides the kind of deep relaxation the human body requires. A too-soft mattress compresses the backbone, whereas a too-firm mattress may put undue pressure on your hips.
The benefits of a decent mattress and a restful sleep cycle are numerous. Harvard University explains that a proper night’s sleep may improve memory, metabolism, and the ability to learn. A good sleep cycle may also boost immune system function.
Harvard University also notes that adequate, restful sleep is imperative to the body’s ability to repair and restore itself. Important bodily functions such as protein synthesis, muscle and tissue repair, muscle growth, and the release of certain hormones generally occur while the body is in a state of deep sleep.
A good night’s sleep is important for cognitive function, as well. Harvard University says that deep sleep assists in brain development in babies and young children. This “brain plasticity” may also be present in adults during deep REM dream cycle sleep.
A great mattress can actually save you time, too. If you wake up in the morning and need to stretch for fifteen minutes to take the kinks out of your backbone, that’s wasted time. A mattress that’s just right for your body allows you to get up and get moving right away.
The science of mattresses and sleep
Not long ago, The National Institutes of Health conducted a study about bedding systems and they way they affect human health and happiness. Forty-nine subjects participated in the 28-day research project, and the results were remarkable.
The NIH study proved that better mattresses equate with better backs, improved quality of sleep, and dramatic abatement of stress-related symptoms.
How to choose the perfect mattress
The Sleep Council suggests scouting about for a new mattress after seven years. That’s the average life span of a mattress. Even if your mattress looks the same as when you purchased it, the springs, foam, and whatever else it contains is probably well past its prime.
Your best bet to avoid morning back pain and obtain a restful night’s sleep is to select a mattress that’s not too hard, not too soft, and offers “neutral” support to your spine, according to experts from Mattress-Guides.net.
Never buy a mattress just because it’s pretty. Test each mattress you consider to find one that offers the neutral back and hip support you need. Bring your own pillow, and be sure to rest atop each mattress for at least 10 minutes. Don’t worry; mattress stores want you to test their products.
If you don’t have time to go to a local mattress store to try out mattresses, that’s ok too. Most online mattress stores let you test your new mattress for at least 60 days. Layla Mattress lets you try out their copper-infused memory foam mattress for a whopping 4 months! Trust me, it won’t take you that long to fall in love with their mattress. Learn more about it here.
This same try-before-you-buy principle applies to all mattresses, whether they be filled with memory foam, latex, inner springs or air. Choose the perfect mattress, and you may improve your sense of well-being in so many ways.