Tips to Help Make Your Mattress Last Longer
It's a fairly well-known fact that a good mattress will last for about ten years if you look after it (a mattress of poor quality will last for considerably fewer years even if you take good care of it - that's why buying a cheap mattress is usually a false economy). After that, it will start to sag and you'll find you have a little 'groove' all of your own to lie in, though you won't get much support and you'll soon start to experience back ache.
But how do you 'look after' your mattress to extend its life as long as possible?
First, do your research and choose a mattress that you will be comfortable on. It's no good extending a mattress's lifespan to ten years or more if having bought the 'wrong' mattress means sleeping uncomfortably for ten years or more. Choose from a range of mattresses including pocket-sprung, latex, memory foam or open-coil, and select the correct firmness for your sleeping position.
Here are some tips for keeping your mattress in top shape for as long as possible:
1. Invest in a mattress protector. Vital if you have young children who like to play 'musical beds' in the middle of the night and might not be as proficient at sleeping all night without leaking as you are. Also important if you like to take a cup of tea up to bed in a morning, especially if you have over-exuberant pets who like to join you and don't understand why you can't pet them whilst holding a mug. Protect your mattress from spills (and therefore smells) and stains to prolong the amount of time you want to keep it. If you don't like plastic sheets, try Kelly mats, which have a soft top and plastic base.
2. Vac the mattress once a month to minimise dust mites (that may produce allergic symptoms like sneezing and a runny nose, especially first thing in the morning).
3. Turn the mattress around once a month like this: month 1 - turn head to toe (rotate 180 degrees); month 2 - flip mattress over; month 3 - turn head to toe; month 4 - flip mattress over and so on. If you have a mattress that says not to flip it over (perhaps because it has a pillow-top or other mattress topper) then obviously don't flip it over but do rotate it head to toe.
4. Make sure your bed frame suits your mattress. Some mattresses are designed to go on top of divans (or box sprung beds) whilst others are better on slatted or sprung-slatted beds.
5. Choose memory foam or latex mattresses. These won’t sag, though they are an acquired taste. They mould to your body, giving you support where you need it. Memory foam mattresses don't spring back into shape very quickly, making it rather hard to change position; latex mattresses are good if you have allergies but are more expensive than other types of mattress.
Finally, as any ten year old will tell you, do not bounce or stand on your mattress: it will break!
Some useful resources here to further strengthen your home improvement skills: