How to Pick Your Perfect Mattress
Ready for a new mattress? Here's how to find the one that suits you best.
Innerspring mattresses are still by far the most widely used. They
support you with coil springs, and in most built today, each coil is
individually enclosed. This helps the bed weather years of use and
prevents the coils from popping out of the mattress. On top of the coils are a
wide variety of materials added for comfort, from pillow to latex to memory
foam. It's all a matter of preference.
Salespeople may try to sell you on the idea that more coils mean more
comfort, but that's not necessarily true, Breus and Shamie say.
"You don't really need a coil count above 390," Breus says. Beyond that, the
difference in feel is so small it would be difficult to notice.
Pros: There are plenty of innerspring mattresses on the market from
which to choose. They range in firmness, the fluffiness of the pillow top, and
in price to fit nearly every preference and pocket book.
Cons: There's no direct relationship in most cases between
price and comfort, but Shamie suggests steering clear of the cheapest
innerspring mattress. If there aren't enough springs and cushion to offer you
proper support, he says, you'll likely wake up with an aching back.
Conditions: For someone who is very overweight, spring mattresses may
offer a firmer support, making them easier to get in and out of, Breus says.
Firmer versions are good for people with back pain. But spring-based mattresses
can be comfortable for almost anyone.
Memory Foam Mattresses
Memory foam mattresses are growing in popularity. They are made of layers of
different densities of foam that respond to weight and temperature, and are
known for comfort because they contour to the specific shape of your body.
Memory foam toppers are also available.
Pros: By molding to the shape of your body as your weight shifts
through the night, memory foam reduces pressure points, and relieves pain.
Memory foam also absorbs movement, so if you sleep with a partner, you're not
likely to be disturbed by his tossing and turning.
Cons: One of the biggest complaints with memory foam mattresses is
that because these mattresses are temperature sensitive, softening and molding
with your body heat, they can make you feel extremely hot during the night.
Breus also says memory foam mattresses have been known to emit an unpleasant
Conditions: "If you have a hard time getting comfortable, if you have
chronic fatigue, or some type of muscle pain, then a memory foam mattress would
work well for you, assuming you don't have temperature issues," Breus says.