Hybrid Mattress: Eight to nine years.
Gel Mattress: Ten years
Don’t let the name fool you: gel mattresses are just a ‘trendy’ way of saying ‘memory foam mattress with gel inside.’ The gel content in these types of mattresses isn’t enough to add (or drop) a few years from the mattress’s overall longevity expectation.
Latex Mattress: Six to twenty years
How long a latex mattress lasts will depend on the kind of latex. Natural-and-organic latex won’t last as long as synthetic; the former is designed to hold up for six years (minimum, varying based by quality), and the latter for around twenty years before it starts to lose shape.
Pillow Top Mattress: Nine years
If you think that your mattress will last longer because it has a pillow top, think again: pillow top mattresses are held to the same longevity standards as non-pillow varieties.
Warning Signs That You Need a New Mattress
- Sagging. If your mattress is sagging, you notice dents or lopsidedness (especially in the center of the mattress, where you sleep) then it’s definitely time for a new one, as the lack of spinal support can lead to a host of orthopedic conditions.
- Allergic reactions. Along with spinal pain, an old mattress can also trigger or intensify allergic reactions. Over time, your mattress can accumulate dust, mildew and other allergens – and negatively affect overall health.
- Joint pain. Waking up with sore muscles, a stiff back and/or joint pain or weakness is another sign that the innerspring or foam cells are starting to break down and not providing the proper spinal support.
Why Should You Replace Your Mattress?
Replacing your mattress is not just about comfort, or because it’s just the ‘thing to do.’ It’s also about health. Here is why it matters:
- Your old mattress is triggering your allergies.
- Your old mattress is sagging, and your back hurts after sleeping on it.
- Dust and dust mites can seep into your air passageways, making it hard to breathe easy – even if you don’t have allergies.
- Your old mattress is creaking, and you’re tired of waking up to your partner’s every move.
- Because of how uncomfortable it is, your old mattress is causing you to regularly lose out on sleep, which in turn is slowing down your reaction times, increasing your chance for developing heart disease, and weakening your body’s ability to fight infections.
Should You Flip a Mattress?
Yes – but ONLY if it is a double-sided mattress. You can check whether or not you need to flip or rotate your mattress by consulting the manufacturer’s instructions on the mattress tag/label.
How Do You Make Your Mattress Last Longer?
Regular maintenance of your mattress and following a few key prevention principles can go a long way in ensuring it lasts as long as possible. Here are three ways to get there:
- Do not eat in bed. In mattress world, eating in bed is the worst crime one can commit. No matter how careful you are, crumbs have a way of escaping – and escape, seep, and nestle their way into the depths of your mattress they will – turning your mattress into a breeding ground for all kinds of gross bacteria and mold.
- Do not let your pets share your bed. We get it: allowing Max to snuggle with you in bed is tempting. But resisting the urge will reap rewards – or rather, prevent a slew of nasty side effects. (The soft, porous, dark insides of a mattress are actually the perfect environments for roundworms, and other parasites common to pets, to thrive.)
- Rotate/flip the mattress (if needed). If your mattress’s manufacturer’s instructions state that the bed needs to be flipped or rotated every few months, then it says so for a reason. A major key for lengthening the lifespan of your mattress as much as possible is simple: follow the instructions!
How Can I Make My Bed Firmer?
The best option for ensuring you’re getting enough firm support is to make sure the mattress you’ve purchased is of high quality to begin with. If you find yourself stuck with a mattress that’s starting to sag, though, there are a few DIY steps you can take to increase the firmness:
- Place a mattress topper. When most people think of mattress toppers, they think of those soft foam layers designed to make a bed more ‘cushiony.’ But did you know there are firming toppers available? Look into firm (or even extra-firm) memory foam mattresses toppers to add on to a weakening mattress – just make sure it’s a topper and not a pad! (Toppers labeled as ‘pads’ tend to encompass the softer, ‘cushiony’ types of mattress toppers.)
- Lower the thermostat. A warm room, believe it or not, can soften mattresses made of 100% foam. Lower the temperature of your room for a few days; if you start to notice a difference in how firm the mattress feels, consider changing your nightly habitat. Sleeping with a window open, adjusting the thermostat or cranking the AC have all been reported to make a difference in all-foam beds; just make sure to double up on blankets and pajamas for your own warmth!
- Look into your sheet sizes. Sometimes, loose bedding or the wrong sheet size can make it feel like your mattress is softer than it really is. If you are using the right sheet size and still feel like the sheets may to be blame, check the corners: a proper, ‘hotel-style’ bed will have each corner and edge pulled tightly under the bed for a flat, even, firmer top-surface feel.
- Flip or rotate your mattress. If your mattress is double-sided, then flipping it every few months can ensure even distribution of pressure.