How Often Should You Replace Your Mattress?

How Often Should You Replace Your Mattress?

How often should you get a new mattress? The fact of the matter is that regardless of what the experts say about how often should you replace a mattress, you should most likely get a new mattress more frequently than you've been told. If you're wondering about replacing your mattress, then you might just have waited too long. There are no precise rules to tell you when you should make a change, but if you wake up every morning feeling tired and achy, or you haven't a clue when you last bought a mattress -- it's a pretty safe bet that you need to buy a new mattress. 

When determining how often to replace mattress, you need to keep in mind that various mattresses differ under certain circumstances. What one can withstand may be the undoing of another. Consider these following signs that it's time to replace your mattress in order to find out if your bed is responsible for you experiencing inadequate sleep.

What Are the General Guidelines?

Basically, a mattress has an estimated lifespan of ten years. Even high quality mattresses are made to last between five and ten years and no longer. Depending on the type and quality of your mattress, it may last you more or less time.

By planning ahead to begin saving for a new mattress every 8 years or so, it gives you plenty of time to decide which type you want, how much you can afford to spend on it, and will save you from sleepless nights due to a worn-out mattress.

It goes without saying that any mattress made using high quality materials is going to last longer. This proves that the type of mattress you choose to purchase makes a difference.

Different types of mattresses have varying lifespans:

1. Memory foam mattress (8-10 years)

Memory foam mattresses are available in various densities and materials, which determines how long they last.

There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to the lifespan of these mattresses, but in general, they last longer than your traditional innerspring mattresses. In fact, a memory foam mattress of top quality might last anywhere from 8 to 10 years. A memory foam mattress incorporates a layer of memory foam with springs or support foam. Memory foam utilizes your body's heat to soften and mold the mattress to your shape. This supplies amazing support and comfort. Memory foam is a very sturdy material providing it has a high level of density and is also renowned for supplying excellent support and wonderful pressure relief. This type of bed normally has a longer lifespan than regular spring mattresses.

Furthermore, memory foam mattresses do not require flipping, but you might have to turn it around on the bed occasionally, head to foot, to reduces the chances of depressions forming due to body weight.

2. Innerspring mattress  (10 years)

Innerspring Mattresses use a support system composed of steel coils. The shape of the springs, coil gauge, designs, and number of coils in a mattress can vary. These mattresses help to disperse your weight evenly across the entire mattress. The quality of the mattress and the way the springs are manufactured is the most important factor in determining the longevity of an innerspring mattress.

Generally they can last as long as 10 years -- sometimes longer if they are two -sided and can be flipped over to allow for more evenly dispersed wear and tear.

3. Hybrid mattress (10 years)

A Hybrid Mattress is essentially a multi-layer bed that is constructed using a fusion of memory foam, latex, or gel and innerspring mattresses. They normally hold a base layer of foam, a coil support system, and another top layer of foam. Usually most hybrids will use standard memory foam, but some hybrids include gel, the purpose of which is to make the mattress cooler to sleep on. Hybrid mattresses provide improved breathability and temperature regulation making them good mattresses.

It's a fact that hybrid mattresses don't last as long as other types of mattresses, but their endurance level depends on the type of coils used and the grade of the base foam.

While there is generally not a great deal of data on how long hybrid mattresses last, many manufacturers provide warranties of up to 10 years. A high quality, high standard hybrid mattress may give good service for an even longer period of time.

4. Latex mattress (10 years)

Latex Mattresses are made from a combination of latex foam with either springs or reflex foam to make a bracing and heavy-duty sleep surface. Because latex is a natural product, some latex mattresses are frequently combined with other natural fillings to create the ideal natural mattress.

Latex mattresses are extremely comfortable, which is mainly why they are so widely used. However, the durability of such a mattress can vary depending upon whether you buy a mattress with synthetic or organic latex.

These mattresses normally have lifespans of 15 years. There are some users, however, who dislike latex mattresses claiming they are too hard to be comfortable.

5. Pillow-top(10-15 years)

A pillow-top mattress may supply an extra layer between you and your mattress, but that doesn't mean that it will increase the lifespan of the mattress. Furthermore, the extra layer can break down over time and leave your sleeping surface uneven.

Why Should You Replace Your Mattress?

While there are no hard-set guidelines as to how often to replace a mattress, a good quality mattress will lessen the amount of time you sp end tossing and turning at night by giving you pressure point relief, which, in turn, will let you slip into deeper, healing REM sleep. There are a few reasons regarding how often to change a mattress, the most important one being comfort. As time passes, a mattress can lose its shape and start to sag in places, causing lumps and dips. We all know that having an uncomfortable mattress can severely hamper your ability to get a good night's sleep.

How Do You Know It's Time to Replace Your Mattress?

If you are coping with any of the following issues at present, then you should probably consider replacing your mattress:

1. Analyze Your Mattress
  • Indications of wear and tear. -- These would be things such as sagging, lumps, indentations, rips and tears, stains, worn edges, and being able to feel the coils through the fabric of the mattress. 
  • Creaking springs. -- Springs that creak or squeak whenever you move is an indication that the coils are worn and are not providing the support you require.
  • Dust mites and bed bugs. -- You can detect dust mites by noting if the mattress looks uncommonly dusty, of you're suffering from symptoms of dust mite allergies, such as coughing, tightness in the chest, and wheezing. 
  • Dirt -- All types of unpleasant matter collect on mattresses besides dust mites and bed bugs, such as dead skin cells, dust mites, pollen, body fluids, and a whole host of other allergens. It's actually been stated that the addition of all this matter over time may nearly double the weight of your mattress after a decade of use.

Laundering your linens and vacuuming your mattress on a routine basis will help a lot but these particles will still remain and can cause severe difficulties for people with allergies. Should you or your partner be beset by severe allergies, it is highly recommended that you replace your mattress a lot more often, and purchase a top quality mattress protector for extra insurance.

For bed bugs, you will almost certainly have red welt-like bite marks all over your body, and if you look closely, will be able to see bed bugs along the edges of the mattress.

  • No motion isolation. -- An aging mattress will lose its ability to reduce motion transfer, so that you can feel the movements of your partner, whether they are getting into bed or turning over.
  • Over 5-8 years old. -- Although this isn't the only criteria to use when determining how often should you replace a mattress, it's still one that must be taken into consideration. If you've had your mattress for 5 years or longer, it's highly advised that you begin monitoring its health on a regular basis. In fact, you should ask yourself the above questions at least once on an average of every 6-12 months. If you don't wake up feeling refreshed and rested, you notice that your mattress is deteriorating, or your partner complains that it is having a negative effect on their sleep, it's time to change your mattress.
2. Analyze Your Sleep
  • You wake up feeling achy and stiff. Awakening with aches and pains, sore muscles, stiffness, tingling or numbness, and feeling tired despite a complete night's sleep are all indications of a mattress that has seen its last days. When your mattress isn't comfortable and is no longer giving your body the support it needs, you can awake with any or all of these conditions. This is the most important thing to take not of in deciding when to change your mattress. 

The manufacturer may claim that your mattress will last 10 years, but if you're in year 5 and you wake up with achy, sore muscles, it's time to find a new mattress. The most common areas where people wake up feeling achy and sore are in the back, shoulders, and hips.

Are you waking up stiff? Sore? Or with back pain you didn't notice before? These are all indications that it could be time to change your mattress. With the passage of time, the structural integrity of the support and comfort materials can degrade, causing a gradual decline in how the mattress sleeps. If you're waking up with pain (especially if you don't go to sleep with it) then it's time to consider changing your mattress, because in all likelihood it will be the cause of your troubles.

Putting all that aside, even if your mattress is newer and not deteriorating, if you're not sleeping well on it, then it may be time to make a change. You spend too much time on your mattress to spend it in pain.

  • Your allergies or asthma has worsened. Mattresses are where the majority of the allergens and dust mites in your household thrive. If you haven't been taking steps to prevent the spread of dust mites, you may have a problem. This can wreak havoc on allergies and asthma. Vacuuming and routinely cleaning your mattress can help, but if you find your symptoms aren't improving, then it's time for a change. 

There are several things you can do to prevent dust mites:

  1. Launder all bedding frequently, and use high heat when you place it in the dryer.
  2. Use a hypoallergenic cover on top of your mattress and pillows.
  3. Eliminate carpets in your bedroom.
  4. Keep bedroom humidity low.
  5. Dust with a wet cloth; a dry cloth can spread dust mites.
  6. Use a high-quality air purifier.
  7. Occasionally vacuum your mattress. For even better results, put baking soda on your mattress and allow it to absorb odors and moisture for several hours prior to vacuuming.
  8. Don't place your suitcase on your bed to avoid bringing unwanted guests into your bedroom.
  9. You don't sleep well. -- You get at least 8 hours of sleep, yet still feel tired. When you aren't comfortable sleeping on a mattress, you automatically roll to the center in your sleep.

How do you know when it's time to ditch the old mattress and get a new one? Listen to your body talking to you. If you've been generally feeling uncomfortable, or waking up with back pain, or various unexplained aches and pains, then it's time for a new mattress.

3. Analyze Objective Reasons
  • Time Change. -- In all likelihood, your body has changed since the last time you purchased a mattress. Perhaps you've gained a few pounds or suffered an injury that's still sensitive to pressure. Plus, don't forget how much mattress technology has evolved since you last bought a mattress. Updating your mattress to obtain maximum support for your body will help you get the refreshing sleep you need nightly.
  • Lifestyle Changes. -- Changes in your lifestyle can warrant buying a new mattress. The one you're sleeping on now might not be providing you with the space and support you need. If you share a bed with a partner, it's essential to find a mattress that suits both of you. And, if you should find that have more space available for a bigger bed, it makes perfect sense to upgrade to the biggest mattress you can afford.
  • Weight Changes.--By putting more weight on your mattress, gaining weight or adding a sleeping partner, you can put more stress on an older mattress and change how well you sleep. When your mattress is required to support more weight than before, you may notice changes that make it less comfortable than it was.
  • Technology Changes. -- If you discover that you sleep better in a hotel bed or any other bed outside of your home? This could be a sign that your mattress just isn't getting the job done any longer. If you sleep more comfortably out then you do at home this is a certain indication that you may want to change your mattress.
4. How Can You Make Your Mattress Last Longer?
  1. Cover: Using a hypoallergenic mattress and pillow cover will keep dust mites from sneaking through the material and into the mattress. For extra protection you can use a mattress protector.
  2. Rotate: Rotate the mattress from time to time.
  3. Bed frame: Use the right foundation or box spring.
  4. Care: From time to time remove the sheets and covers and give the mattress a thorough cleaning, including removing any stains.
  5. Precautions: While it might be great fun to them, don't allow your children to jump on the bed as this can damage coils and other mattress parts. As an added measure, keep pets off the mattress as well.
  6. Flip: If you have a two sided mattress, then it needs flipping every 6 months to a year.
  7. Ventilation: Routinely open a window for improved ventilation.
  8. When moving: Carry the mattress so that it's parallel to the wall and keep the mattress upright. The reason is that when you carry a mattress parallel to the floor, it will bend in the middle.
5. How to Dispose of Your Mattress?

Simply throwing your mattress away and having it end up in a landfill is not great for the environment. There are several other choices that are better for the planet, and may also help others.

  • Donate: Perhaps you know someone that can use your old mattress. If not, there are plenty of organizations that will take your mattress. Some will even come and pick it up. Be sure, however, that it's in reasonably good condition and bed bug free. Some options are the Salvation Army, The Furniture Bank Association of America, Goodwill, or Habitat for Humanity. You can also inquire of local churches or religious organizations, women's shelters, refugee resettlement groups, and homeless shelters. 
  • Sell: If your mattress is in pretty sturdy condition, and local laws don't prohibit it, you just might be able to sell your mattress and get a little cash for it.
  • Recycle: All major cities in North America have mattress recycling programs.
  • Upcycle: You can actually break down the mattress by yourself and use the materials contained inside for a brand new purpose. You can get really creative and have unique items in your home that people won't believe came from your old mattress.
  • Junk removal service: This will cost you a bit of money, but can certainly be convenient, especially if you have other items you need to get rid of as well.

6. How to Get a New Mattress For a Great Price?

If you believe that you need a new mattress, do yourself a favor and do your homework ahead of time. This means to educate yourself before you go out and attempt to make a purchase. Do a little research online and make sure that you know what the different types of mattresses are and which one will best suit your requirements. That way you won't be taken in by a charming salesman who doesn't care about you, but just wants to make the sale. It's not a guarantee that you won't make a mistake, especially if this is your first time buying a mattress, but at least you'll be well-armed for the battle.

You can try a few ways to save money when buying a brand new in mint condition mattress. One is to make your purchase online. Online retailers have much lower prices because they don't need to pay rent for a building or pay the salaries of salespeople. If it bothers you that by buying online you don't have the confidence of knowing exactly how the mattress looks and feels, then go to brick and mortar stores to test the mattresses and determine what level of firmness you want. It will also give you the opportunity to observe other features of the mattresses. 

Once you find a mattress that you would like to buy, see if it's also sold online. There are several mattress brands that exclusively sell online, but some have displays in the higher-end stores. If you can't find a mattress in a brick and mortar store that you like, go online and read plenty of reviews, and find a mattress that has an in-home trial with the promise of a full refund.

Another thing that can save you a lot of money is shopping during sales. Amazon Prime Day, Cyber Monday, Black Friday, and other major holidays are frequently times that mattresses go on sale.  

7. Don't Ignore the Indications That Your Mattress Has Seen Better Days

Understandably, mattresses can be an additional expense that just doesn't make it into the family budget. It's natural for people to delay purchasing a new mattress until a better time. Unfortunately, sometimes that better time never comes and your mattress becomes sadly neglected and worn out.

But this way of thinking can be a huge mistake. You will sleep a whole lot better on a new mattress instead of the old, sagging one you have, especially if it's over 8 years old. Catching some more restful sleep can give you better health, and might even lead to fewer doctor visits and prescriptions for medications. 

Thanks for reading.

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