Choose the Right Mattress.
A checklist for disabled.
By Kate Sinapian
Sleep occupies a third of our lives so it's not hard to understand why some people invest so much time and effort when buying their bed. After all, wouldn't you want to be as comfortable as possible if you're going to be spending so much time sleeping? Aside from comfort, you'll have to make sure that getting in and out of bed isn't going to be a problem. There are so many features to consider when the average Jane or Joe buys a bed.
But what about people with special difficulties? What features should they be on the lookout for when buying a mattress? Naturally, comfort is key. But independent mobility is equally important. If you or someone you love with a disability is in the market for a new mattress, we've compiled a checklist of questions to help you in your search.
What type of mattress should you buy?
- How much space will it occupy?
- Can you try the bed out for at least a week before you buy?
- How hot does it get?
- How easy is it to move around the bed?
The best beds for disabled are with memory foam mattresses and latex hybrids for a number of reasons. These two types of beds are good at relieving pressure on the points of the body that touch the bed. This means that your body is less likely to ache because the bed provides more than adequate support. According to a study conducted in 2010, individuals with chronic back and shoulder pain experienced better sleep and reduced physical discomfort It also means that you’re less likely to get bed sores. And if you’re getting a profiling or adjustable bed, memory foam mattresses (and latex ones) are the most suitable since you will require a bed that bends and flexes easily without losing its structural integrity, maintaining its level of support and comfort
This seems like an obvious question but it is an important one, nevertheless. While you’re contemplating the space on the bed, you may forget to consider the space surrounding the bed. Is there going to be enough maneuvering space around each side of the bed? This is particularly important if you (or your loved one) is in a wheelchair. A 90-cm clearance on each side should be enough.
When it comes to choosing the right mattress, Goldilocks had it right. You’ve got to try it to find out if the bed is the right fit. Comfort is very subjective, and so is firmness. What is firm for you may be soft for someone else. Weight and body type will also affect the firmness rating that you’ll be choosing.
Some memory foam mattresses can feel “hot” when you’re sleeping while others have been specifically designed to ensure that the mattress “breathes”, staying cool the entire time you’re lying down on it.
It’s important that you test how easy it is to get out of bed without help. You may want to also check the mattress’ edge support. If you near the edge of the bed, do you immediately slide off the side? How about sitting on the edge? Will you need to have bed rails? How about the ease in which you could change sleeping positions?
While this checklist of questions is by no means comprehensive, it can give you a good enough start in the right direction. You may want to consult with a healthcare professional for advice.