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What to look for in a mattress?

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When it comes to mattresses, one size (and type) does NOT fit all.

We all have different body shapes, sleeping positions, health needs and preferences. A bed that’s comfortable as a cloud for one person may keep their partner tossing and turning all night.

It’s hard to feel good and perform your best if you haven’t had quality sleep the night before. 

In the long term, sleep deprivation can wreak havoc on your health – leading to all sorts of problems such as high blood pressure, depression, heart failure, weight gain and low immunity. 

When you’re lying down in bed, your comfort is strongly influenced by the firmness, material and structure of your mattress. This helps to determine how much uninterrupted sleep you get!

This article explains what to look for in a mattress so you can sleep comfortably and wake up feeling rested.

Three important questions to ask when looking for a mattress:

  • Does the mattress support your body and health?
  • Are you sharing the bed with anyone? 
  • Has the mattress been built with quality in mind?

The basics of what to look for in a mattress: does it support your body and health?

Firmness and pressure:

The perfect mattress keeps your spine and torso in perfect alignment, without placing pressure on your body. A lot of this comes down to how firm your mattress is (there are different levels).

The level of firmness that suits your needs is usually related to your sleeping habits. Do you sleep on your back, side or stomach? And how deeply do you sleep?

This is what GENERALLY works best for people:

  • Soft mattress: side sleepers (also people who enter a light sleep)
  • Medium mattress: side sleepers, combination sleepers
  • Medium-firm mattress: back sleepers
  • Firm mattress: stomach sleepers (also people who enter a heavy sleep). 

The question of what to look for in a mattress becomes even more important if you have back pain or other injuries. A medium-firm mattress typically provides the best support and keeps the spine aligned (studies show that medium-firm beds can effectively lower back pain). 

Even though we give advice on the perfect firmness for different circumstances, what’s true on paper may be different in reality for you. It’s always best to visit a bed store to take various types for a “test drive”, if you have that option.

How comfortable does the mattress feel to lie on?

Just like Goldilocks, you may need to try the bed to find one that’s “just right”!

Size matters:

If you’re particularly tall or heavy-set, you’re probably going to feel cramped sleeping on a Single bed. Perhaps you need to consider a Queen or King bed? It’s even possible to get an extra-long mattress and frame, so that your feet don’t knock against the bed frame. 

On the flip side, don’t necessarily get a bigger bed if you don’t need it – especially if space is tight in your room.

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Material options:

To confuse matters further, mattresses are made from many different materials with properties that could hinder or enhance your sleep based on your needs. 

Mattresses mainly consist of springs or foam. Demand is generally highest for innerspring and memory foam mattresses, but all have their unique benefits.

Innerspring mattress: The inside of the mattress consists of a network of steel spring coils, which provide support, firmness and bounce. A high quality innerspring bed features coils that are individually wrapped. This helps the mattress contour to the body. 

A word of advice: you don’t want a mattress with a low coil count, as this reduces bodily support. Having said this, although a high number of springs may be more supportive, it is just as important to consider the gauge of the wire.

Back and stomach sleepers favour innerspring beds in particular, as do people who tend to overheat at night (air flows better through innerspring mattresses, compared to traditional memory foam). 

Memory foam mattress: This is a good option for pressure relief, since memory foam readily contours to your body. It effectively supports the spines of people who have back pain, or sleep on their side. Memory foam is usually anti-microbial, so it works well for allergies too.

However, this material may not be suitable if you get hot easily, as it tends to trap heat. Having said this, modern versions contain additions such as gel, to keep people cool. If you have arthritis or joint pain, consider a gel memory foam mattress because it has pressure-relieving properties but shouldn’t overheat you.

When buying a foam mattress, it’s important to consider the density of the foam . A high-density foam mattress generally provides better support and pressure-relief, so it’s usually a superior option.

Latex mattress: You can buy a latex mattress that’s 100% natural latex, synthetic or blended. Latex mattresses are growing in popularity because they offer good temperature regulation, while supporting the body and keeping the spine in natural alignment. This antibacterial material is wonderful for people with dust mite allergies, but NOT if you have a latex allergy (or suspect you do).

Hybrid mattress: A good option for people who want the best of both worlds (foam and innerspring). This breathable bed doesn’t retain heat and it’s comfortable, with decent pressure relief.

Adjustable mattress: These contain air chambers that allow you to inflate or deflate the firmness level with a remote or app, but they’re not ideal for people on a budget as they tend to be more expensive. Please note, an adjustable mattress is not the same as an adjustable bed frame.

What to look for in a mattress if you’re sharing a bed

If your sleeping partner constantly moves around, you may prefer a mattress that isolates movement. A memory or latex foam mattress does this better than an innerspring bed. However, if you’re favouring innerspring options, consider buying one with individually wrapped coils (pocket coil), as this isolates motion more effectively than other innerspring types.

Has the mattress been built with quality in mind?

It’s important that your mattress is made from quality materials – regardless of the style that you choose. The best quality mattresses are manufactured to last a long time and don’t contain harmful chemicals. To this end, it’s generally better to select a mattress that was made locally in Australia, as the production standards are more reliable than China, for example. Reputable bed sellers should be able to provide certifications that show their mattresses are made from non-toxic materials from suppliers like Dunlop foams and Foamco.

Why Choose Simply Beds?

We invite you to visit one of our Queensland stores to try our mattresses for yourself. If this isn’t possible and you need to buy online, don’t worry, we offer 120 nights for you to get used to your new mattress. If it doesn’t meet your needs, you can exchange it for another (based on certain conditions).

Simply Beds can even custom build a mattress based on your unique requirements!

Our mattresses come with up to 10 years of warranty, for peace of mind.

We offer a fast delivery service and guarantee the lowest price. If you can’t afford an upfront payment, there are flexible payment plans (without any interest).  You can choose payment options like Afterpay, Zippay and Openpay.

Please call our team on 1300 132 231 or fill out our contact form if you have any questions.