Will a Memory Foam Topper Help an Old Mattress?

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A good mattress equals a good night's sleep. As mattresses age, they lose their shape and can become uncomfortable. Many people cannot afford to buy a new mattress and choose to deal with their old one instead. Adding a topper will give an old mattress a facelift. Popular toppers such as memory foam have their advantages and disadvantages when it comes to improving the life of an old mattress.

Composition

  • Memory foam toppers are made from a thick layer of foam. The topper works by conforming to the shape of the consumer. When a person lies on the topper, the memory foam will push in and condense around the body's shape. Foam toppers come in standard bed sizes, from twin to king, and vary in thickness. Thinner models have a 1-inch thickness, while thicker models can be 4 inches or more.

Benefits

  • A memory foam topper will make an older, firmer mattress softer. Since the memory foam molds to the shape of the consumer, the topper helps relieve pressure against the body's pressure points, increasing blood flow during sleep. Memory foam toppers absorb shock and movement, offseting the tendency of older mattresses to bounce or shake when someone tosses and turns. Since memory foam toppers absorb movement, one person can toss and turn and the other may not notice.

Disadvantages

  • Memory foam toppers, especially older models, have a dense layer of material that can absorb body heat and release it back to the sleeper. Consumers who need cold temperatures to sleep may have difficulty with a memory foam topper. Dense toppers can also create a cradle around the consumer, making it difficult for some people to move out of one spot. People who toss frequently in their sleep make wake up throughout the night feeling constricted.

Warnings

  • Memory foam toppers will not solve every problem associated with an old mattress. Mattresses with dips or sag in the middle will not benefit from a memory foam topper. Since the topper conforms to shape, it will only sink into the sag or dips. Many consumers also notice an unpleasant smell when first using a memory foam topper. The smell fades with time but can make sleep difficult during the first few days.

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