What Are the Benefits of a Latex Mattress?
Latex mattresses are increasingly popular for their extreme comfort and durability. They are also associated with eco-friendly practices and enhanced sleep health. However, not all latex mattresses carry these benefits. So how do you choose the best latex mattress for you, or know if a latex mattress is right for you at all?
In this article, we will define what a latex mattress is, go over the different types of latex mattresses, and discuss how they provide a good night’s sleep.
What Is a Latex Mattress?
A latex mattress is constructed from two to four layers of latex foam, and there are three different types of latex foam: synthetic, blended, and natural.
Synthetic latex mattresses are primarily crafted from a rubber-mimicking plastic called styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR). SBR is also used in artificial turfs, tires, and conveyor belts. Latex mattresses with SBR are safe and an affordable alternative to natural latex but not nearly as durable. Additionally, off-gassing chemicals irritating to people with respiratory issues are prevalent in synthetic latex.
Blended latex mattresses contain less toxic chemicals. These types of beds are 30 percent natural latex and 70 percent synthetic latex. Blended mattresses last longer than synthetic latex, but not natural latex.
Natural latex is more supportive, durable, eco-friendly, and better for sleep health than synthetic and blended latex. It is harvested and refined from the milk-like sap of a rubber tree called Hevea Brasiliensis. This process encourages the healthy growth of rubber trees as they can be tapped for up to 30 years. Once the sap is harvested, it is processed into Dunlop or Talalay foam; both are soft, supportive, and extremely durable. We will discuss the differences between Dunlop and Talalay later. First, let’s dive deeper into the benefits of a natural latex bed.
Five Benefits of a Natural Latex Mattress
Natural latex beds are preferable to synthetic and blended latex for their eco-friendliness, durability, and health benefits.
1. Pain Relieving
The gentle cushioning and buoyant support of latex foam mattresses are especially beneficial for sleepers with back and joint pain.
Latex foam softly cradles heavy body parts, such as the hips and shoulders. This light contouring provides pressure relief near the joints and lower back, while latex’s natural elasticity maintains natural spinal alignment by gently supporting lighter areas, like the neck and back.
2. Hypoallergenic and Low Maintenance
If a bed is not continually cleaned, microorganisms, such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses can easily collect on the top of the mattress and cause mold and mildew to grow and dust mites to accumulate. This results in bedroom allergies and an unsafe sleeping environment.
However, latex is naturally antimicrobial, meaning it repels harmful microorganisms, making latex an excellent choice for people with year-round allergies or anyone too tight on time to sanitize their mattress.
As mentioned above, natural latex is refined from the sap of the rubber tree. The trees are not cut down or damaged during this process and can produce sap for up to 30 years. Therefore, the processing of latex mattresses encourages tree growth and is extremely sustainable. Natural latex is also biodegradable, ensuring it won’t sit in a landfill for years.