Why Memory Foam?

What Can Memory Foam Do For You?

Memory foam is a type of material used to make mattresses, pillows, and other soft surfaces. It is unique in that its conforming, contouring properties can provide deep pressure stimulation for the body. Pressure applied on your body by memory foam causes it to mold around you, reducing pain and increasing comfort.

Did you know that the first memory foam was created for a NASA space program? Memory foam was not manufactured commercially until about twenty years ago. It was supposed to be used by astronauts in their spacesuits. The idea behind the memory foam was that it would provide an even amount of pressure against all parts of the body, allowing for more comfort and less pain during space flight.

What Is Memory Foam?

Memory foam is made of polyurethane, a synthetic material that is used for soft and durable products. The most common example of this is the foam in mattresses and pillows. Memory foam’s ability to mold itself into any shape makes it ideal for use as an astronaut suit.

What can memory foam do for my health?

Memory foam will give your spine the support it needs while you sleep. It will keep your body in alignment, which reduces pain and fatigue throughout the day. Your muscles will not have to work as hard to maintain posture when they are supported by a memory foam mattress.

Memory foam can also help with otherwise painful pressure sores that sitters develop every time they spend long hours sitting down in an office chair.

Memory foam is not toxic, and it does not off-gas. There are no toxic chemicals in memory foam mattresses or pillows.

Doesn’t memory foam fall apart quickly?

While the first prototypes of memory foam that were made for a NASA program were not durable enough, memory foam that is used in furniture and mattresses today has a very high density with a very low cell count for maximum durability. Many brands of memory foam are designed to last at least ten years, if not more.

What about temperature control?

Memory foam has a highly breathable structure. Research shows that body heat is dissipated through the top layer of memory foam[1]Effects of thermal environment on sleep and circadian rhythm https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3427038/, which allows air to circulate more freely near your body. Temperatures are very stable with memory foam, regardless of whether you’re heating or cooling it.

What is ILD?

ILD is a measurement of resistance to compression. The lower the ILD, the more resistant it is to compression. For example, a 4 would be four times as stiff as a 2.

However, ILD cannot be applied to memory foam because it is not springy: the foam collapses under body weight. As such, ILD doesn’t have the same basis as spring mattresses. Memory foam is rated by its density: the higher the density, the greater the resistance to compression, and the more likely you are to sink into it.

Memory foam and mites

While dust mites inhabit almost every spring mattress, memory foam is in an environment that is not favorable for mites.

Dust mites feed on the dead skin cells that slough off our bodies when we sleep. They prefer high humidity, but they will survive in low-humidity conditions if they have a sufficient food source.

References

References
1Effects of thermal environment on sleep and circadian rhythm https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3427038/

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