Heated mattresses or heated mattress pads are frequently used by people during colder winter months as an extra way of staying warm while sleeping. The devices are also used by some people with joint problems since the heat helps improve circulation and can make sleeping more comfortable. Heated mattresses are not for everyone, however, and there are problems associated with them that should be acknowledged before purchasing one.
Heated mattresses run off of electricity and while they are only designed to reach a particular temperature and shut off, there is always a risk of malfunction. If blankets get bunched up on one location of the mattress, heat can build up and could potentially cause burns on the person sleeping in the bed. Diabetics are at particular risk for this because diabetes sometimes affects the circulatory system and makes the patient less sensitive to temperature. The patient may not be able to feel the excessive heat buildup and can suffer injury as a result.
Heated mattresses could potentially cause electric shock just like any electrical device that malfunctions. This is especially true if the mattress is punctured or if the control box or power cables are damaged. Pets sometimes chew through wiring and their claws could damage a mattress as well, resulting in a higher risk of electric discharge. A heated mattress should never be used after it has suffered damage unless it has been repaired by a certified technician. While heated mattresses are usually safe for people with pacemakers, a malfunction resulting in electric shock could prove dangerous.
Not Safe For Children
Young children should not be permitted to sleep on a heated mattress and the same is true for anyone incapable of recognizing excessive heat and having the ability to turn down the controls. Children are much more sensitive to temperature than adults, so a setting that is suitable for an adult could cause pain or injury to a toddler. In addition, children are more likely to play on the mattress or behave in a way that inadvertently damages the electrical components, which could be hazardous. Children are also less likely to be able to turn off the mattress or turn down the settings quickly in the event of a mishap.
- Photo Credit bedroom image by Jorge Casais from Fotolia.com
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