As we get older, sleep becomes more important and the quality of our mattresses can contribute to relieving the aches and pains. What the body needs from a mattress can change over a person’s lifetime. The normal tension that we can feel in our muscles as we enter our senior years may actually be made worse, or even caused by, an inappropriate mattress.
However, there can be a variety of other reasons that our sleep suffers when we are older, they can include:
- Worry, anxiety or depression
- Joint pain or arthritis
- Snoring or sleep apnea
- Limb discomfort from poor circulation
- Medical side effects
- Dementia, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease
In addition, sleep patterns change as we get older. One report on the alternations of our sleep architecture as we age noted that “Aging is associated with decreases in the amount of slow wave sleep and increases in stage 1 and 2 non–rapid eye movement sleep, often attributed to an increased number of spontaneous arousals that occur in the elderly.”
Much has been written about the importance of sleep. Medical professionals have said our bodies need a certain amount of sleep to be able to function properly. Experts recommend at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night to stay healthy. That’s a long time, which is why the type of bed you spend those hours in can make all the difference. An old mattress that is worn and saggy won’t be able to support the body and can lead to aches, pains and sleepless nights. You know it is time to change your mattress if you wake up feeling stiff and sore and if it has been over 10 years since you had a new one.
Finding the best fit for your body as you age can be a challenge. Here are some tips to get the right mattress.
Tips for Finding the Right Fit
To find the best mattress for your needs, you need to be clear what your needs are first. Consider keeping a sleep journal for a couple of weeks to write down your issues and concerns. Once you have established your needs, you can determine what type of mattress will best help you to overcome your sleep problems.
Before you make your decision, decide how much you can spend. Although you may be more budget-conscious in your seniors years and a new mattress can seem like an expensive purchase, consider it an investment rather than a luxury. Having the right support at night can improve your health and overall wellbeing. However, you do not need to spend top dollar to get a mattress that is a good fit. There are many mid-range models that will do the job just as well as the higher-end ones. Most mattress stores in Toronto offer a range of mattress types to suit any budget.
Most experts recommend that you try any mattress before you buy it. To get a good feel for the mattress, visit a mattress store and lie down on it for a few minutes and assess the firmness, comfort, and support. Be sure to compare the different types of mattresses to get a good fit.
Types of Mattresses
Depending on what your needs are, there are a variety of mattress types with different firmness and comfort levels. From spine alignment, easy repositioning, pressure relief, temperature control, customizable, firm support, and even ones for active seniors there is a type of mattress to suit every lifestyle.
One of the most popular mattress materials in recent years has been memory foam, which is an ideal choice for older adults. These types of mattress are great at distributing your weight and can help relieve pressure points. Seniors who suffer from joint paint, back pain, or arthritis would be wise to choose a firm support foam mattress. However, they tend to keep heat better than other types, which can be uncomfortable at night.
Spring mattresses are the traditional style and can still offer a good sleep. Customers will have a big selection to choose from, but buying the most expensive will not guarantee a good night sleep.
Hybrid mattresses are a great option and combine the benefits of both foam and spring mattress into one. These types of mattress make movement easy while providing the right support to reduce aches and pains. With a hybrid mattress, the body can stay cool at night, making ideal sleep conditions for seniors.
Alternatively, latex mattresses are a good option for proper support and comfort. They are similar to memory foam but have firmer support. However, if you have concerns over back pain and are looking for a cooler mattress, latex could be the best option.
Air mattresses may be the right fit if you and your spouse have different support needs. The trick is getting one that is firm enough to give you both a good night’s sleep.
No matter what your age, a good night’s sleep is important for your overall wellbeing. Our needs can change as we get older and the type of mattress we require in our senior years may also need to change. It may be time for a new mattress if you find yourself suffering from aches, pains, or discomfort in the morning, or if you have not changed your mattress in over 10 years.
Seniors who suffer from worry, anxiety, joint pain, poor circulation, depression, dementia, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s will often experience negative sleep habits. Our sleep patterns also change as we age, which can interfere with a good night’s rest. Professionals recommend 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night. This is why the mattress you choose is very important.