Four Mattress Types To Choose From
Mattress choices have evolved in the last three decades -- all in an effort to provide superior support, comfort and a better night's sleep. Although the outside covers of most mattresses look the same, the inside, or core, of some mattresses has changed significantly. Below we explain each type of mattress and some of its key attributes.
One of the newest and fastest growing categories of mattresses contains air-chamber technology. Gaining popularity over the past 10 to 15 years, air mattresses offer superior comfort and personalized body support. A SLEEP NUMBER® bed cushions you with its unique air-chamber design. It adjusts to your body to more properly support your back and spine, and helps reduce uncomfortable pressure points. Sleep Number beds feature the advanced SLEEP NUMBER® DualAir™ technology. It allows you to adjust your side of the bed to an individualized comfort and firmness level, your SLEEP NUMBER® setting.
This conventional type of mattress has been around for nearly 150 years. The core contains a series of metal springs that keep a firm sleeping surface, yet give a little when a person lies down. A protective layer of padding is placed on either side of the metal springs to keep them in place. On top of the padding there are various types of foam and fill to cushion the feel of the metal springs. All of the springs and padding are enclosed in a cover.
Foam mattresses have been around for several decades. There are many kinds of foam mattresses, including viscoelastic memory foam, which is a popular variation of the traditional all-foam mattress. Foam beds essentially create a body mold by softening in response to body heat and weight. Foam beds cannot be adjusted to your exact firmness preference.
Waterbeds are made in both soft-side and hard-side models. Soft-sides look similar to conventional mattresses, except they have water as the core. Hard-side mattresses have a wooden frame surrounding the actual mattress. Although popular in the 1960s, waterbeds have fallen out of favor for several reasons including high maintenance, quality concerns, comfort and durability issues, and rental housing restrictions.