Sleep is one of the most important aspects of human health. Without quality sleep, our bodies are not able to heal and rejuvenate themselves and our brains struggle to process emotions and store memories.
One of the biggest factors in getting a good night’s sleep is the comfort of your mattress. There are few other products that can have such a significant effect on our health and happiness. Therefore, it’s important to invest in a quality mattress and replace it according to expert guidelines.
Most people need at least a month to adjust their bodies to a new sleep surface. Considering how long we spend in bed in a 24 hour period, it’s no wonder that our muscles and joints have a memory of how to find the most comfortable spot on the mattress.
The real question is, WHEN should you replace your mattress? Under normal conditions, mattresses should be replaced every 6 to 8 years. Of course, this is a general guideline and not a one-size-fits-all solution. There are various factors that influence when you should replace your mattress.
The materials used to manufacture your bed greatly influence its durability. Lower-quality inner spring and all-foam mattresses tend to have the shortest lifespan, as they are prone to sagging and body impressions respectively. Hybrid mattresses are also prone to these issues, but since they’re often sold as higher-end options and made with higher-quality materials, they tend to be more durable.
Latex mattresses are the most durable, lasting upwards of 8 years depending on the material, there are a few good ways to predict durability. For inner spring and hybrid mattresses, look for a lower coil gauge (which means thicker coils). For mattresses with foam, look for higher foam densities (1.7+ PCF for poly foam, 5+ PCF for memory foam). Finally, make sure you’re getting natural latex rather than synthetic latex.
Sleeper Size & Weight
Your weight, as well as the weight of anyone sharing your bed, also influences the rate at which the mattress will degrade.
Reduced Motion Transfer
Older mattresses tend to transfer more motion from one side of the bed to the other. This means that a partner changing positions in the night can disrupt your sleep. A new mattress, and particularly an all-foam or hybrid bed, will transfer less motion, helping couples get better rest together.
Reduced Aches & Pains
If you wake up with pain or stiffness in your back , shoulders, hip or neck, it’s quite possible that your mattress may be part of the problem. Older beds tend to sag in places, which reduces support and makes it less likely that your spine will be properly aligned.
A 2009 peer-reviewed clinical trial found that new mattresses significantly improved sleep quality and reduced both back pain and perceived stress in the trial population. Most new mattress owners also report that their sleep quality improved after purchasing a new bed. Omitting to do so can worsen allergies or asthma, which could be due to dust mites and allergens.
Although you really should replace your mattress after 6 to 8 years, there are a few things you can do to help keep it in tip-top shape and stretch its lifespan as much as possible.
Maintenance & Care
Like any other product, a mattress will last longer if you take good care of it. This means rotating your mattress every 3 months or so if the design permits it, (unless the manufacturer recommends otherwise) Rotating will help redistribute the load and prevent sagging.
Utilize a Mattress Protector
Keep your mattress clean and protect it from normal wear and tear, dirt, spills and more. They also protect your mattress from mold, bed bugs and debris build-up, not allowing any liquids to get inside.
There are many on the market, find a sustainable, eco-friendly cover that is breathable and liquid proof, stains might void your warranty.
Let it Breath
You can also let your mattress breathe every once in a while. Simply remove the bedding for 20-30 minutes. This will help excess moisture, which may have got inside the layers, evaporate. Also, if possible, take your mattress outside, as exposure to sunlight can help you combat the dust mites.
Is your mattress showing signs of wear and tear?
If you can see a visible dip in the middle, or if you can feel the springs through it, then it’s definitely time to change your mattress. The same goes for a noisy mattress too. If it’s creaking, groaning and pinging all night long, then it’s obviously not in a sound condition.
What causes a mattress to sag or deteriorate?
A few things can accelerate your mattress’s decline, such as weight, improper care, or even using the mattress on an incompatible foundation, for example, not using a bedspring. Most mattresses are extremely versatile and may be used on a slatted or platform bed frame, on the floor or with a box spring. There is no preferred setup beyond your own personal preferences. You simply want it to suit the large majority of body types, sleeping positions and setups.
Most mattress covers are not removable. We recommend the use of a mattress protector immediately upon use to protect against spills and dirt. If needed, spot clean the desired area with a mild detergent (gently dab the affected area and avoid rubbing). Please ensure the cleaned area is completely dry before adding your mattress protector or sheets.
What is the best time of the year to buy a mattress?
When it comes to buying a new mattress, there isn’t necessarily the ‘right season’ or time. Timing really depends on your current mattress needs more than anything, and offers can often be found year-round.
Can an old mattress cause back pain?
Absolutely. As the materials break down and become softer, your back and hips receive less support which can lead to back pain.