People have been sleeping on mattresses, in some form or another, for thousands of years. The ancient Egyptians slept on palm boughs heaped in a pile in their homes. The Romans slept on bags of cloth filled with wool or hay. It wasn’t until the 1970s, however, that the science of sleep took a leap forward. In the decade after the Moon landing, scientists at NASA developed a material that became known as memory foam.
With a memory foam mattress, there are no pressure points to strain the joints or muscles. Pressure points can be the cause of restless tossing and turning, preventing you from sleeping the entire night through. This interrupted sleep can be detrimental to your health over time. For years, studies have linked lack of sleep to increased risk for heart disease, diabetes, weight problems and more. Although there is disagreement in the medical community about the exact effects of little sleep, anyone who’s pulled an all-nighter can tell you it throws off a host of body functions.
With that in mind, I tried the PureRelax Mattress by Relax The Back. The common wisdom with memory foam mattresses is that you have to try them for 15-30 minutes in the store without getting up. Then, if you like what you feel, you should try it in your home for a minimum of 30 days. The reason behind the 30-day minimum is that it takes that long to get the mattress’s full benefit. Because, although it looks comfortable, it takes a while to get used to it. At first, it was awkward, trying to adjust my shoulder blades (and posterior) to the memory foam. But, after a week, I found myself a lot more comfortable. When I adjusted to the memory foam technology, my body’s shape, weight and temperature did all the work, making the bed my own.
Because I now experience less tossing and turning, I find that I wake up ready to start the day. With the PureRelax mattress, I hit the snooze button a lot less. Perhaps the best thing about my foam mattress experience is that my expectations have been raised. Now, I expect to sleep longer and more deeply, as well as wake up more refreshed. I realize that I don’t have to spend the night drifting in and out of sleep on a flat mattress, in which I conform to it, rather than the other way around.
People often balk at the price of memory foam mattresses and I don’t blame them. Let’s face it – Tempur-Pedic and other memory foam mattresses don’t come cheap. But, for me, it was about making an investment in my health and well-being. I wake up now feeling much better than I used to. For me that’s hard to put a price on. It also goes with my philosophy that you should spend the extra money on things you use every day for extended periods of time. For example, it pays to have quality shoes, cell phones, and computers because of how much and how often we use them. The same goes for mattresses, where we spend, hopefully, eight hours a day.
Or, more accurately, a third of our lives.