Memory Foam Mattress Toppers Explained

Would you spend a thousand dollars on a new mattress if you did not have to? Buying a memory foam mattress topper might be a perfect way to extend the life of your mattress while you save up the cash to buy a new mattress in a year or two, or five.

Nuts & Bolts

How does memory foam work and why should you bother? This amazing foam was developed by NASA in the 1960s. They wanted better seat cushions for the astronauts. Twenty years later memory foam began to be manufactured by Tempur-Pedic. These days there are tons of companies to chose from. The foam works like this: the little cells in the foam compress when you put pressure on them. And, unlike regular foam, they “remember” to stay compressed. Regular foam is springy and dry. It pulls at you, if you sit on it with bare skin. It is not springy and it feels wets, somehow. It also feels a little sticky, but the texture is different, not abrasive the way regular foam is.

The cells in memory foam flatten out in response to your body’s weight and heat. But they work independently of each other. For example, if you put your hand down on it, with fingers splayed, the foam compresses only where you are actually making contact. This is amazing news for people with back pain. The foam relieves the pressure points by supporting only those areas in contact with the bed.

Dollars & Sense

Now you know how it works, here’s why it is an economical choice, too. You could spend $500 to a thousand dollars for a new mattress. What if I told you that you could spend $200 and have a better sleeping experience? That is the miracle of memory foam. A topper is a great choice. It fits over your existing bed and you have, essentially, a new mattress.

There are even cheaper toppers on the market. You could walk into a Target right now and walk out with a $50 foam topper. It will last awhile, probably a year and you will notice a difference in your sleeping. The reason I say that it will last a year is that an inexpensive topper like that is probably only an inch or so thick and the foam itself will be lightweight. The thicker the topper and the heavier the memory foam, the better. It is like you would expect — it will cost you more money. The thicker and heavier, the most costly because the company had to use more materials to create the foam.