Mattress Obsessed

An Old Mattress Can Lead To Sleepless Nights

Sleeping On An Old Mattress Can Mean Sleepless Nights

Because you most likely spend more time in your bed than anywhere else in your home, you might want to inspect it carefully the next time you change your linens. If your mattress shows visible signs of wear and tear or you wake up feeling tired, stiff, or achy, it's probably time to invest in a new one. An old worn-out mattress can rob you of the quality sleep you need to feel good and function well during the day.

An Old, Lumpy Mattress Can Restrict Your Body's Blood Flow

One consequence of sleeping on a sagging, lumpy mattress is that it causes you to shift positions all night long and wake up with a stiff neck, back ache, or numb limbs. There is an explanation for why you just can't get comfortable on a worn-out old mattress. According to the website, the flow of blood through vessels that lie directly beneath the skin in contact with your mattress is constricted by the weight of your body. The flow of nutrients to these parts of your body is diminished and you may feel a little pain or numbness in the affected area. Your brain reacts to this by signaling your body to roll over.

An old mattress that isn't providing sufficient support for your body's weight means more constriction of those tiny blood vessels, which causes the pain that forces you seek a different position. Each time you change positions, you wake up momentarily. This series of interruptions to your sleep can leave you feeling fatigued the following morning.

An Old Mattress Can Contribute To Sore Muscles

If your mattress is worn out, your back, legs and arms are forced into uncomfortable positions all night. This results in sore muscles and joints in addition to poor quality sleep, which causes problems with cognition, concentration and mental acuity, as well as contributing to existing health problems.

Old Mattresses Can Make Your Allergies Worse

The dead skin cells you slough off every night as you lie on your bed are food for tiny creatures known as dust mites, which inhabit mattresses, bedding and pillows. According to WebMD, about 20 million Americans are allergic to dust mites. Instead of slumbering peacefully all night, these people suffer from chronic symptoms that can include a stuffed nose, sneezing, and watery, itchy eyes. People who suffer from asthma may experience breathing difficulties triggered by their allergy to dust mites.

Replacing Your Mattress Every 8 Years

If you're experiencing more than an occasional restless night and your mattress is five to seven years old, it may be time to replace it. The benefits to your health and well-being could be significant. The Better Sleep Council reported on a 2009 Oklahoma State University study in which participants sleeping on new mattresses instead of their own mattresses that were more than five years old reported significant improvements in their sleep, including the following:

  • 70.8% in sleep comfort
  • 62.0% in sleep quality
  • 55.3% in back pain
  • 50.7% in back stiffness

Sleeping on a comfortable new mattress that's designed to support your body will help ensure you get the restorative sleep you need. Four centuries ago, Thomas Dekker, a prolific Elizabethan author, wrote, "Sleep is the golden chain that binds health and our bodies together." The role sleep plays in maintaining physical and mental health shouldn't be underestimated.

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