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Good night: a comfortable and supportive mattress should help one rest and relax

Softer mattresses are generally better for smaller frames and firmer ones are preferable for heavier body types

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 30 March, 2017, 12:49pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 30 March, 2017, 12:49pm

We spend about one-third of our lives sleeping, so it makes sense to invest in a comfortable mattress. Just what exactly constitutes a comfortable mattress is of course subjective. One person’s ergonomic support is another’s slate of marble, and with all the technology that now underlies a good night’s sleep, finding the ideal mattress is a lesson in pocket spring coils and memory foam.

A good night’s sleep comes down to the body’s ability to relax so blood can flow effectively through the body and perform its restorative functions. A comfortable, supportive mattress should aid relaxation whatever your sleep position and be soft enough to sink into while maintaining contact with all of the body, to ease pressure on points such as the shoulders or hips.

The level of support an individual needs is largely dictated by body weight; softer variations are generally better for smaller frames and firmer mattresses preferable for heavier body types.

Surprisingly though, many people base their criteria for a mattress on the experiences of others, says Maggie Sham, associate director sales and marketing for Serra and Airland Mattresses. “It is not ideal since the requirements and acceptance of softness is personalised and individual. Customers should trial different models before they make a decision.”

Mattresses today are constructed from highly technical support systems. Mattresses constructed of inner spring systems offer varying degrees of tension dictated by the number of springs, while memory foam mattresses mould to the shape of the body and hybrid versions combine both methods of construction.

Airland’s new Intense series contains its five-zone spring system with antistatic ticking, which it says “reduces the impact of static tension on sleep”, while the In-cotton mattress is constructed using Airland’s 7-zone spring system.

The system divides the surface area into seven sections, which Airland says gives different levels of support according to the contours of the body. Organic cotton is used for its higher moisture absorption rate and natural latex helps to regulate body temperature.

Understanding the differences between mattress support systems is important in finding an optimal comfort level, according to Serta. Its patented Mira-Coil Spring System forms a “Z” shape, which it says provides better support by evenly dispersing bodyweight, while foam and latex layers reinforce alignment as well as improve breathability. The system is applied in its new Dream mattress, which also includes foam and latex layers for added resilience and breathability.

Experts say there are also differences to look out for when choosing a mattress for children, as the immature development of children and teens’ spines require different levels of support to an adult.

Serta recommends a firm or moderate mattress rather than a softer version, as it will provide better support to maintain the right shape and position of children’s immature spines during sleep.

Slumberland’s Kidspaedic mattress applies some of its most advance technology, which it says provides ultimate spinal protection for children during the growth and development of their spines.

“A good night’s sleep is essential for children to rest. It is a basic necessity for the body and key to the health of the spine, brain and studies during their growing stage. Maintaining the right posture with proper tools is very important,” says Lilian Yuen, Slumberland representative at LF Asia.