How to pick a mattress: Tips on how to choose the right mattress for your bed

memory foam mattress

Take the right move to get yourself a comfortable mattress and a decent night’s sleep

Other than just choosing a mattress, few items come down to personal tastes. What can feel like a cloud to one individual can be back pain in the making for someone else. What makes the decision even more difficult is the sheer variety of choices, with mattresses available in almost every budget and style you might think about.

You have a lot of options from the new age bed in a box mattresses to the more conventional one, you feel like it weights a lot of pocket sprung options that can only be sold in specialist bed stores. The good news is that certain factors make the process of decision making easier-read on to know what they are.

How to look for a mattress

When am I going to change my mattress?

The National Bed Federation suggests that you replace your mattress every seven years, although the very good ones will last eight to ten years even more in some cases. They inform that a mattress got worn out very frequently before you know it. In fact, the Sleep Council points out that after seven years, your mattress would have had more than 20,000 hours of wear and tear, half-pin fluid lost every night and pound of dead skin cells shed every year.

Tell-tale signs that you want a new mattress include discovering you’re sleeping better in other beds and knowing you’re not sleeping the same as you did a year ago. When you start waking up with stiffness or discomfort, it could also be a sign you need to splash the cash.

A mattress that’s perfect for you and not worn out would mean that you’re moving less, wake up less and less interrupted by your partner. You are much less likely to awaken with shaky feeling or with any aches or discomfort.

How big my mattress should be?

People aren’t buying big enough beds, the Sleep Council says. For example, many people don’t know that a double bed is only 135 cm wide – it’s not even two single beds and there’s no space close enough for two adults to sleep comfortably without disturbing each other. Just going up one size at 150 cm to a king size mattress will make a huge difference.

The reality is, if you’re sharing your bed, buy as large a bed as you can fit in your bedroom; one of the most common sleeping issues is interference from a partner. Furthermore, don’t forget to fit the size of your mattress to your bed frame for example; European mattress sizes vary slightly from regular UK sizes.

Should I try before purchasing?

In addition to having the right size, your mattress should also have the right amount of support and comfort. That’s why it’s necessary to either attempt a trial period before you buy or get a mattress. This means either checking it out in the store – taking time to lie on it in your normal sleeping position, or opting for one that comes with a 100-day trial period if you buy one online.

What are the various mattress types?

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There are five main types:

Pocket sprung -the most common type of mattress and, thanks to the springs sewn into individual fabric pockets, it has a bouncy, springy feel. The springs available with varying tension levels, also make the mattress comfortable and durable. Pocket-sprung mattresses can be packed with all kinds of materials to match your needs, including comfort and breathability in wool. They don’t mold your body or chill you at night, unlike the latex and memory foam.

Memory foam – These don’t have a lot of spring, instead moulding to your body form, which means you’re less likely to interrupt your partner when you’re moving at night. They keep their shape well, and many of those of new generation arrive ready to roll (can fit easily in your boot) or even vacuum-packed and delivered to your door step. They can hold body heat on the downside, making you feel hot and sweaty especially if they’re really soft.

Latex– Identical to memory foam, but with a little more spring. Ordinary latex is superior to synthetic latex, as well as being antimicrobial and resistant to mould and dust mites. There are two latex types- heavier, denser Dunlop latex, and the lighter and softer Talalay latex. These are also available in the style of the “modern generation,” with the downside that they are equally susceptible to body heat retention. Some latex mattresses are claiming to last more than 20 years.

Hybrids – these combinations are match-and-mix variants of the styles of mattress. For instance, the pocket-sprung core (so you get the buoyancy) has a top layer of foam so you get the moulding effect.

Continuous coil or open coil-the first one is made of a single looped cable, while the second one is made of single springs connected together with one cable. Although these are the most affordable of all mattresses, they can be annoying (in the worst situations, you really feel the coils) and the entire thing shakes as you move, which means you are likely to disturb your partner very much. Coil mattresses wear out the fastest, too, and you can well find that you and your partner meet in the middle while you are rolling inwards.

Will my natural sleeping position have some effect on which mattress I buy?

Indeed. Different sleeping positions require different forms and support levels, so choosing your mattress accordingly make sense.

Side sleepers – You need a lot of pressure relieving mattress here, particularly at the points where your body pushes down the most. You can work them out by pretending that you are lying on a floor. Pocket sprung is better with a soft cover, but certain memory foam or latex mattresses can fit well too. Remove very hard mattresses which can cause discomfort at main points of strain.

Front sleepers – The pocket spring mattress will perform well to support you in all the right positions, while you may feel constrained with memory foam. Latex will also perform well, because there’s bounce back.

Back sleepers – Several types of mattress will work for back sleepers, but aim for one with decent support and enough to keep the spine well balanced as you sleep.

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Will I buy mattress that’s soft, medium or firm?

Typically speaking, heavy people tend to go for solid support while lighter people consider medium or soft mattresses more convenient. However, the sleeping positions and personal desire need to look at too. Personal choice really matters more than you would thought.

For weak backs and older people, don’t think strong mattresses are necessarily safer, that’s a fiction. And note that if you have different tastes with your partner, you should get mattresses of which each half has different friction.

Will any mattresses need some sort of base bed?

Bed base will change both your mattress feel and efficiency, so always find out which type of base the mattress manufacturer advises you to use. Some recommend a sprung slats base that offers adequate protection and resists movement when you move about in sleep. A base structure may also carry any mattress, offering a more stable basis. It is worth remembering that, over the years, a slatted base will cause a mattress to bulge, so you can make sure that the slats are no more than 70 mm apart to guarantee their maximum lifespan.

Do all mattresses need turning?

Any of the mattresses need to be regularly turned to ensure sufficient wear and tear. Consider this particularly when many mattresses are incredibly heavy when purchasing one. Most mattresses just need to rotate rather than turning, even though it can be a tricky task when weighing a tonne. Nevertheless, you can buy mattresses which do not need to turn or rotate.

How important is the warranty?

Review the warranty, not just for how many years it would last but also for the fine print. Many warranties cover product defect that are sure to happen very easily – such a popped spring, or foam that doesn’t bounce back. But if you have not used the suggested bed base or refused to use a mattress protector when they insist that you require one, the warranty may be invalid.

How much will I spend?

This used to be the case that a cheap mattress was a false market, but we find there are variations, including the Ikea Morgedal, which cost only £ 125 for a bed. This is not to suggest, however, these mattresses costing thousands of pounds are not worth it – just make sure you do your research first.