As sleep experts, we hear about new mattress myths every single day. Most of the time, our response is, “it depends.” Finding the right mattress is a very personal matter that comes down in large part to the individual who’ll be sleeping on the bed. So, to help guide your mattress shopping experience, here’s our take on a few of the mattress myths that come up most often in our conversations with customers.

All memory foam sleeps hot.

The nugget of truth behind this widely-held myth is that, in polling, consumers have more frequently reported their memory foam mattresses as sleeping hot. It’s true; reports of temperature problems have been higher for these types of beds than for others. However, mattress makers have responded by making improvements to their products. The newest memory-foam models incorporate more breathable layers of foam which are engineered to improve air flow, and some even feature cooling gel memory foam that draws heat away from your body to keep you cool all night. As always, the best way to find a mattress that feels great to you is to try it out in person at a mattress showroom.

The firmer the mattress, the better it is for your back.

It’s certainly possible to have too much of a good thing. Support is one-half of the mattress-comfort equation, and it has a huge impact on spinal alignment during sleep. It’s very important to get enough support, as it can’t be added later. Too much firmness, however, can cause painful pressure points and knock your body out of healthy alignment. For most sleepers in good physical health, a medium to mid-firm mattress will provide adequate support. If you have a smaller build or prefer to sleep on your side, you’ll likely want to go even softer.

Every new mattress needs a matching box spring.

Here’s the low-down: your mattress needs a strong foundation. If you’re upgrading to a new mattress, you most definitely don’t want to keep it on the floor. High-quality box springs are made to protect both your investment and your body. A firm foundation prevents sagging and damage while reinforcing comfort and support. Buying a new box spring, however, isn’t the only way to get it. Box springs are essential for traditional bed frames, but if you’re using a platform or adjustable bed, you can forego the matching set. A good rule of thumb is that, if your new mattress is going to spend its life atop a box spring, don’t use a foundation as old as the mattress you’re replacing. But if your existing box spring is substantially newer or nicer than your old mattress, it will probably be good enough to support your new bed.

One size fits all.

Oh, the bed-in-a-box phenomenon. It’s so great to have your mattress delivered by bike courier and dragged by someone else to your 14th-story Manhattan walk-up. Unless that is, you have any specific sleep needs whatsoever. While narrowing down the overly complicated field of mattress names, brands, and options can be aggravating, it’s nothing compared to the pain you’ll feel if you compromise healthy spinal alignment for the opportunity to see your bed spring out of that little box. The truth is, different people have different sleep needs. If you’re above average in weight, height, or tendency to feel too hot, prone to pain, or interested in organic mattress materials, that one size isn’t likely to fit you comfortably.

Mattress stores are obsolete.

We’re witnessing a revolution in retail in this country, and it’s a spectacle to behold. But unless a whole new model for trying mattresses emerges, mattress stores are likely to be around for a long time. Despite the claims of the companies touting one-size-fits-all beds, most people know that trying a bed before you buy it is essential. While a great return policy will get you a new mattress if you’ve chosen the wrong one, it does nothing to help you compare a variety of mattress brands, models, and materials. In this day and age, empowered shoppers check out their options in person at the store and then find the best price online. At A Goodnight Sleepstore, we don’t discourage this type of smart shopping. In fact, we offer a lowest-price guarantee so that customers both locally and across the United States can get great beds at the lowest prices anywhere!

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