When you look at your mattress, is it as old as a kid ready to go to college?
If so, here’s a gentle but firm reality check:
Most mattresses are only designed for 3,500 nights of sleep, on average. That’s about seven to 10 years. After that point research shows your sleep quality diminishes greatly.
However, if you’re experiencing insomnia, interrupted sleep, onset of restless leg syndrome, snoring, sore muscles, and spinal pain, these are clear signs that your mattress is ready to meet its maker.
Instead of continually buying (and eventually throwing out) mattresses that are simply not up to snuff, consider substituting your nightly nest for an organic foam mattress.
These mattresses are more than kind to the environment — they can help you sleep better.
How to Know If You’re Sleeping Well
A good night’s sleep is indispensable. And until science invents a way to power down and recharge like a cyborg, we humans will spend almost one third of our lives in bed — or 36 years, to be exact.
Here’s the thing:
Three in four Americans think their bed could actually stand to be more comfortable than it actually is.
And four in ten of us get up in the middle of the night because we can’t get to sleep on our new beds.
Your Bed Affects Your Sleep Stages
If a mattress fails to support your overall comfort and physical body, it can affect your sleep quality.
Conditions like uncomfortable and lumpy mattresses, mattresses that are too hot, or those that simply don’t support your posture can disrupt or shorten your sleep stages.
- n-REM stage one — You’re still awake but starting to nod off. Your muscles are relaxing, and it should only take about 10 more minutes. However, many individuals say that they can’t actually fall asleep because of their mattress.
- n-REM stage two — You only stay in this stage for about 20 to 30 minutes. Your brain is relaxing even more. You won’t wake up at this point, but the issue with uncomfortable mattresses is that you may never make it to this stage
- n-REM stage three — Stage three is deep sleep, the time where the body goes to work repairing your muscles, resetting your immune system. Unfortunately, this is also the time when most people wake up because of blocked airways or muscle pain. If they do, they’ll feel groggy and unrested.
- REM stage — The Rapid Eye Movement stage is when your brain dreams. However, it’s in active mode, so if you do get interrupted during the night, it’s not as bad.
Your mattress’s quality and comfort also contribute to your ability to get the sleep you need. On weekdays, 45% of people say they’re getting less sleep than they need, and 35% report that the gap between what they want and what they need gets wider and wider.
The good news is that your mattress can play a significant role in improving your sleep habits, the quality of your sleep, and your overall health.
Quality Sleep Looks Like…
A new organic foam mattress can help support uninterrupted sleep every night.
Healthy sleep is far easier to achieve than you might think.
It comes down to a few key factors, such as your sleep routine and your sleeping products. Organic mattress beds reduce the body’s stress that it would otherwise experience on a conventional mattress.
You spend most of your time sleeping
If you spend at least 85% of your time in bed sleeping, that’s when you know you’re getting a healthy amount of sleep every night. Ideally, your bed and mattress should support this. It can be as simple as using a mattress topper for more comfort or buying a mattress new that targets other issues you may have.
You fall asleep right away
You should only be spending around 10 minutes in the n-REM stage one of your sleep cycles. Of course, implements like your pillow also affect how comfortable you are initially. However, your mattress plays a significant role in how quickly you can relax your muscles.
For example, many people buy memory foam mattresses because they hear that it’s supportive of the body. That’s not entirely untrue, but many memory foam mattresses feel too hot to the sleeper. Additionally, they can end up sagging in the middle through the course of their life — and your sleep.
You don’t wake up (or you don’t stay awake) through the night
This is a prevalent issue for Americans. Studies show that 50 to 70 million people suffer from sleep disorders affecting their health, including:
- Snoring (because of respiratory issues, allergies, collapsed tracheas)
- Sleep apnea (including obstructive sleep apnea, most prevalent in men)
- Increased risk (and co-existence) of pain conditions, depression, anxiety, and hypoxemia
- Restless leg syndrome
You need to know: These health issues call for a combination of improvements. Some are medical, and others require you to look closely at the materials in your mattress.
Part of the problem is that many non-organic mattresses release harmful chemicals known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
The materials and production process of non-organic mattresses can also collect dust mites, exacerbate cancers, cause respiratory blockages, trigger organ damage, and the disruption of your endocrine system.
Using an Organic Mattress to Improve Sleep Quality
Organic mattresses boost your overall health and your sleep quality.
It all comes down to the materials used.
Non-organic mattresses like synthetic latex, gel foam, and even memory foam have two distinct issues that compromise your sleep quality:
- First, the materials used include harmful chemicals (such as flame retardants), or they use materials that are cultivated with the use of synthetic dyes and pesticides
- And, secondly, the chemicals added during the production and manufacturing process eventually break down and release volatile organic compounds
In contrast, organic mattresses use all-natural materials. These are the best mattress and bedding type if you’re looking for a health-conscious choice that’s also eco-friendly.
All-natural products in an organic mattress can include:
- Organic cotton (which keeps the bedding cool)
- Organic wool (which helps keep the bed warm and acts as a natural form of fire safety)
- Organic latex foam (however, there’s a difference between natural latex and synthetic latex)
- Feathers and down (hey, it’s not just for pillows!)
These materials also reduce your carbon footprint because organic materials can easily breakdown. You can also choose to customize the firmness of natural latex for an adjustable fit.
What to Look for When Choosing an Organic Mattress for Sleep Quality
Latex mattresses aren’t all created equal.
There’s a term in the industry called “green-washing,” and that’s when companies slap on confusing labels to make you think that bedding is environment-friendly, free of chemicals, or has certifications to back its manufacture.
Fact: They don’t.
The only thing you should be looking for if you want to know if your mattress truly includes products like organic latex, organic wool, or organic cotton are:
GOTS — which is the Global Organic Textile Standard — and GOLS — which is the Global Organic Latex Standard.
- A GOTS certified organic mattress (or pillow, for that matter) must be made of 95% certified organic materials (such as cotton, wool, etc.). The remaining 5% must be free of harmful chemicals (like fire retardants).
- A GOLS certification lets you know that the mattress features 95% organic latex. Again, there are strict rules over what the other 5% can include.
The materials and manufacturing process of GOTS and GOLS-certified latex mattresses attest to the fact that your bedding is all-natural, healthy, and free of chemicals.
Simply by including natural products, like organic wool or cotton, and ensuring the production process is certified, you can transform the quality of your sleep:
1) Reduced risk of allergens and dust mites
An organic mattress, especially one made of organic latex foam, and certified to have no other chemicals, is essentially hypoallergenic. It’s resistant to mold, microbes, and allergens. You can rest easy knowing your mattress is not contributing to blocked airways or dust mites. As long as it doesn’t have any wool or fiber batting such as a cotton layer.
2) Relieves the body of aches and pains
People often opt for conventional mattresses made of memory foam because they’ve seen ads, where a hand pressed into a bed, retains its original shape. It’s supposed to tell you that the foam mattress molds perfectly to fit the space of your body.
Now, that’s a subjective factor that some like and some don’t.
But the real test of a mattress is not when it’s new — it’s the performance over time.
Not only do chemicals in polyurethane foam break down and cause toxicity, memory foam ironically does not provide the best support for people who experience sore and stiff muscles or joints.
3) Postural and lumbar support
An organic latex mattress also includes other materials that complement its soft but firm construction. This includes materials like organic wool and cotton. When you’re looking for postural support during sleep, a natural latex mattress holds its shape over time and gives you just enough support without sagging.
Sleep is not just “sleep.”
Even though it’s still a mysterious phenomenon, breakthroughs in science are increasingly proving to us that sleep is connected with the most vital functions of long-term health.
From a lowered risk of dementia to better physiological regeneration, sleep is the silent supporter of all our activities.
At Essentia, we believe that sleep’s supportive role deserves a supportive sleep companion. Our all-natural latex foam beds meet the highest standards of certification for materials and production processes.
However, our eco-friendly mattress line goes beyond just preserving the environment and transforms the way your body restores itself during your sleep cycle.
Choose from several adjustable options, including bedding built for high-performance, fully body recovery, and a clean lifestyle at Essentia today.