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Top 5 Memory Foam Mattress Problems

Memory foam mattresses are growing in popularity with every passing year. Even with average prices that tend to be higher than the standard innerspring mattress, consumers are warming up to the therapeutic benefits of sleeping on memory foam. Memory foam helps with chronic backache, restless sleep, insomnia, and many other conditions that interrupt a good night's rest. Yet despite all of their advantages, there are a handful of memory foam mattress problems commonly complained about among consumers. The following are the top five according to consumer surveys.

5. Difficulty in Lovemaking

Let's be honest, lovemaking is the second most important reason for having a bed. But the fact that it is an incredibly personal experience, with different tastes and preferences among partners, means that any little variable can upset the proverbial apple cart. Among all the memory foam mattress problems listed in customer surveys, this one made the list primarily due to the fact that memory foam hampers mobility.

Because memory foam is temperature sensitive it gets softer as the temperature goes up. Since you naturally produce more heat as the lovemaking process gets more intense, the mattress conforms more and more to your body. Couples who prefer a single position from start to finish generally don't have an issue with this. But those who like to move around and try different positions find it difficult to move the farther they go in the process.

4. Foul Smell

Many people complain of a foul smell emanating from the mattress within just a few days or weeks of getting it home. Though the odor usually subsides by itself, it can cause terrible problems if it doesn't. Consumers have complained about serious headaches, nausea, and insomnia. Some have even said that the smell was so intense they had to return the mattress.

The cause of odors coming from your memory foam mattress is usually low quality construction materials. Incidentally, the mattresses that smell the worst are often the ones produced overseas in places like China. Rest assured that if the mattress has even a slightly offensive odor in the showroom, it will probably only get worse. You can avoid this memory foam mattress problem by making sure you buy only the highest quality product.

3. Slow Recovery

As far as issues having to do with firmness and support, a common complaint is that a foam mattress doesn't recover quickly. By "recover" we mean the process by which the foam returns to its original shape after weight is removed. Recovery plays an important role in overall comfort due to the fact that the human body has certain expectations of what it should feel when you move around in bed. A mattress that has slow recovery properties tends to be somewhat annoying for people who move a lot in their sleep.

Recovery problems are made worse in cool and damp environments like a basement. In fact, if you had one bedroom in your basement and another in the attic, and you had identical memory foam mattresses in both bedrooms, you would probably notice a dramatic difference in recovery time. If the bed you're having recovery issues with is a room that tends to be cool, you might try running a small space heater for 30 minutes or so before you go to bed, then keep the door closed.

2. Foam Breakdown

Yes, memory foam mattress problems do include mattress breakdown. Despite the amazing durability of memory foam it will not last forever. The problem with foam is that it breaks down at an inconsistent rate according to where the most pressure was applied to the bed. For example, the standard memory foam mattress has a life of 10-15 years. Around that 10 year mark you may notice the mattress sinking around your midsection. The foam has really begun to break down all across the mattress, but it's most noticeable in your midsection because that's where you carry the most weight.

The fact of the matter is that you can't prevent mattress breakdown regardless of whether you use memory foam, air, or coil springs. It's just that with memory foam mattresses the breakdown feels different than it does with the coil spring mattress. It’s enough difference to be annoying for some people.

1. High Prices

The number one complaint with memory foam mattresses, according to customer surveys, rests in the fact that prices tend to be significantly higher than what you pay for a traditional innerspring mattress. That is an unfortunate part of the game that you can't do anything about. But given the fact that a good night's sleep carries with it a whole host of benefits not quantifiable in dollars and cents, it might be well worth it if your coil spring mattress is preventing you from sleeping well. Just remember that you get what you pay for. A cheap memory foam mattress is not going to give you the same durability and long life as a more expensive one. And you may end up with more problems than just the price.