Are you having a ‘which mattress’ argument with your partner? | Modern Mummy

Friday, 13 July 2018

Are you having a ‘which mattress’ argument with your partner?


Choosing the right mattress is essential to getting a proper night’s sleep but what do you do when your partner is a noticeably different weight or has wildly divergent ideas of what constitutes comfort and support?

The easiest way to solve this dilemma is to visit a bed showroom together and test out a range of mattresses. Kick off your shoes and lie down. Have a chat with your partner about your normal sleeping position. Do you sleep on your back, stomach, side or a combination of all three?

• Side sleepers generally need a soft, thicker comfort layer than back sleepers because they are in a curvier position, so the mattress needs to cradle and support them. Stomach sleepers need firm, thin comfort layers as there are few indented areas to support.
• Combination sleepers, as most people are, should look for high quality foams, like latex, which are soft near the top but sink a little to relieve pressure while still offering quite firm support. Pocket sprung mattresses can also work well.
• Allergies, back pain and medical conditions like sleep apnoea, where breathing is interrupted during sleep, will also affect the mattress you choose.

There are a huge variety of mattresses out there, ranging from super soft to extremely firm and everything in between. They can be made of natural fibres, like wool or cotton or other materials, like foam. Take a look at this useful guide to ensure you buy the perfect one.

Don’t just focus on the outside of your mattress. The engine of a progressively supportive, long-lasting mattress is what is inside it, whether it is springs, memory foam or latex. Both the upholstery and the springs will dictate how a mattress feels. Briefly, there are four types of mattress:

• Pocket sprung, where the springs are sewn into individual fabric pockets

These mattresses don’t change to fit your body shape, like memory foam does, but they may be just as supportive. Also, they are not quite as warm, a bonus for sleepers who overheat easily. 

• Coiled or continuous coil, made from a single looped wire; or open coil where single springs are fixed together by one wire

While coil mattresses are generally cheaper, they were poorly reviewed by Which? and considered less comfortable and more prone to wear. These mattresses aren’t ideal for co-sleeping because the springs move as one unit so you’re more likely to be disturbed by a restless partner.
• Memory foam

Memory foam mattresses are becoming really popular, although they can be expensive. They will mould to your body but this could irritate some sleepers as the mattress tends to feel warmer.
• Latex

The core of a latex mattress is made up of spring latex. These mattresses are usually more expensive but manufacturers claim they are more resilient and maintain their shape well.

A single tension mattress is generally more economical and you can vary how soft or firm it feels using other means, such as a mattress topper that adds an extra layer of comfort to the core mattress and increases its longevity.

If you and your partner still can’t agree on a single tension mattress after visiting a bed showroom there are other ways to tackle the problem.

A more expensive option, usually only available with medium to high-end mattresses, is to buy a dual spring tension mattress, where one half is firm, the other medium or where one half is soft, the other medium. It is not usually possible to mix soft and firm springs. Also, shock horror, when you rotate the mattress you won’t be able to keep your side of the bed!

Another solution is to buy a zip and link mattress. This is where two mattresses are joined by a zip to create one larger mattress, usually a king or super king. It means you can join two mattresses of different firmness and support while minimising the likelihood of two sleepers rolling together, as two separate mattresses reduce centralised spring compression.

A further benefit is that it is easier to manoeuvre two single mattresses around the house, rather than one large singles. Of course, both mattresses can be used individually as single mattresses too, should you decide on separate beds (!).

Finally, you could also connect two single mattresses and twin beds together into a king size, by using an instant bed connector with safety strap or a simple, inexpensive bed bridge made of foam. 

Key questions to ask when choosing a mattress: 
What is the mattress made of, e.g. memory foam, hybrid, latex?
How thick is it?
What are the mattress measurements and will it fit my bed frame?
What are the options for couples who want different mattresses?
What is the warranty? (usually from 10 years to a lifetime)
Is there a specific trial period, e.g. 100 days?
When will it be delivered?
How much is delivery and assembly or is it free?
If I’m not happy with my mattress is it free to return?
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