How Often Should You Buy a New Mattress?
Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to watch a program on television without seeing at least one mattress sale commercial? Top brands are always advertising the newest technology even in mattresses, thus encouraging you to purchase a new mattress when you might not need to.
It can be easy to dismiss those commercials, but the reality is that mattresses were not built to last forever. It’s true that you don’t have to replace mattresses very often. Still, you should know exactly when you should start looking into a new mattress.
So just how often should you buy a new mattress? Ask yourself the following questions so you can easily find out when is the right time to say good-bye to your current mattress.
What’s the age of your mattress?
Most mattresses can last up to ten years, with the average lifespan being seven years. Any mattress company worth considering would give you a warranty of at least eight to ten years.
It’s best to think of a mattress like a car. You don’t usually drive a car until it’s completely useless, right? Once you see the signs of deterioration, you start to look at other, safer car options. This is because:
- An old car can break down at the worst possible moment, putting several lives at risk
- It would probably run slower, making you late for work and everywhere else
- The appearance could also be embarrassing
Sure, sleeping on an old mattress is hardly as dangerous as driving an old car. However, it can interfere with your life in more ways than you think. These are some consequences of having an old mattress:
- Staying with your ancient mattress may cause severe back pain, aggravate it, and generally decrease the quality of your sleep
- You likely won’t be refreshed, which would have a negative impact on the rest of the day
- You’ll be waking up during the night due to discomfort or pain
- Appearance is also a consideration as an old mattress will bring down the look of your room
Is your mattress saggy?
When it comes to sleeping, most people are creatures of habit. There are back sleepers, stomach sleepers, side sleepers, and feet-off-the-bed sleepers.
Determine which position you favor, or whether you’re a combination sleeper. Whatever your favorite sleeping position is, your mattress probably shows it!
As most people tend to sleep in roughly the same position every night, they often leave impressions in the mattress. This can happen whether you have a spring mattress or a foam mattress.
While it might seem that having an impression of your body is the mark of a good mattress that conforms to your shape, this sagging means less comfort and disturbed sleep. A sagging mattress can also lead to sleep problems later in life. If you have that body impression in your bed, it’s time to start looking at new mattress options.
Is your spine properly aligned?
Mattress commercials comment on how well a mattress can align your spine but they never really explain how this happens. After all, spine alignment sounds like more of a chiropractor’s job than that of a mattress.
If your mattress is old, it can lead to a misaligned spine. This can result in a lot of pain, inability to sit or stand for too long, and also affect other areas of the body. Your preferred sleeping position is also an important factor here:
Back and stomach sleepers
For back sleepers and stomach sleepers, the best way to tell whether a mattress aids in spine alignment is by checking for the natural “S” curve of your spine. If it seems too flat, too arched, or your butt drops down too far when you’re sleeping, it means that your spine isn’t properly aligned.
The same is true in a different sense for side-sleepers. If a side-sleeper’s spine isn’t straight from the neck to the waist, it may indicate that the spine is not getting the proper support it needs.
The easiest way to tell if a side-sleeper’s spine is in the correct position is to try to slide a hand between the mattress and the lower back. If a hand can fit in that space, it means that the spine isn’t in its proper position.
Is your mattress uncomfortable?
This seems like an obvious sign to buy a new mattress. Who would want to sleep on an uncomfortable mattress? You might be surprised at how many people actually manage it every night!
The issue here is that the human body adjusts to discomfort quite quickly, especially when the discomfort is gradual and habitual. Since you sleep in your bed every night, it’s easy to miss the signs of growing discomfort.
Tossing and turning at night is typically attributed to stress or diet. Likewise, finding it hard to fall asleep is seen as a sign of heavy brain activity. While those things may be true, having difficulty falling and staying asleep even if you have the best sleeping position often means that the body is uncomfortable.
Do you wake up stiff and sore?
Getting older takes a toll on the body. However, waking up stiff and sore isn’t necessarily a sign of age. Check out these reasons why your mattress might be to blame:
- It’s old, stiff, indented, or not firm enough
- It’s too soft for your needs
- It doesn’t give your body the support it needs
- Over the years your body needs have changed and your mattress isn’t the right solution any more
It’s not always the age of a mattress that answers the question, “how often should you buy a new mattress?” Though age plays a factor, you should know what kind of mattress best supports your needs and your body.
The best way to know whether it’s time to replace your mattress is to simply pay attention to how your body feels when you wake up in the morning.
Feeling achy, in pain, or generally not well-rested?
If yes, you might want to trade in your mattress for a model that will give you a better night’s sleep and a more alert mind!
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