When you do research for a living, you realize that you really have to be careful when looking for an expert opinion on a product. Some of the ridiculousness is obvious but some of it is a little bit tricky. For example, let’s say you are writing an article about mattress pads. (Hmmm….) And you start the search and you want to see what the science says, the sleep experts, etc… and you find what at first glance is a great article, but you start snooping around and hey, you realize the company that is recommending this product actually owns this product. They have a different website name, but yep, same company.
I can’t tell you how often that happens. In all areas of life. So. just be careful. Be wise in your acceptance of something as truth.
For that reason, I frequently use the Better Sleep Council in research for DreamFit. Better Sleep Council is the consumer-education arm of the International Sleep Products Association devoted to educating the public about the critical relationship between sleep, good health and quality of life, as well as the value of the mattress and sleep environment in pursuit of a good night’s sleep. And as they say best, “With an unbiased voice, the BSC comprises bedding leaders and sleep experts who represent a cross section of the mattress industry” (http://bettersleep.org/mattresses-and-more/mattress-pads-toppers).
Let’s See What The Unbiased Pros Have to Say:
Mattress protectors come in all sizes and fillers.
Most are machine washable and can be flame resistant, hypoallergenic, antimicrobial, allergen resistant, even impermeable to help stop the penetration of bed bugs through fabric.
So, what’s the difference between a mattress encasement and a mattress pad/protector?
Generally, an encasement fully encloses either the mattress or box spring. A cover typically covers three sides only, similar to the way a mattress pad or topper fits. A mattress pad is placed above the actual mattress, and is used to protect the mattress from staining and wear, and to help keep sheets on the bed. Some are hypoallergenic, and the thick ones provide extra comfort and support. Many types of mattress pads and encasements are available.
Types of Mattress Encasements:
For chronic allergy sufferers, there is no better solution than a full mattress encasement and box spring encasement. There are many options that offer protection from allergens such as dust, dust mites, dead skin, pet dander and pollen. A typical mattress cover cannot prevent allergens from your mattress from coming in contact with you.
People all over the world are concerned over the growing outbreak of bedbugs. While a mattress encasement will not protect your home from a bedbug infestation, it will effectively lock bedbugs out of your sleep system. Only total encasement mattress protectors with a locking zipper provide protection against bedbugs.
Types of Mattress Pads
Fitted: A fitted pad is like a thick, fitted sheet, with a bit of quilting on the top and fitted, elastic sides to make sure that the pad does not move around.
Anchor: Anchor pads are a cheaper version, covering the top of the mattress and anchored by elastic bands in the corners.
Guaranteed-to-Fit: A guaranteed-to-fit mattress pad is also similar to the anchor pad, except the sidewalls expand to accommodate variations in mattress size.
Memory Foam: One type of mattress pad that provides extra cushioning is the memory foam pad; this looks like a thin mattress.Another alternative to materials for mattress pads is memory foam, which molds to your body. Although it’s lightweight and comes thicker than the other options, this option absorbs heat and can sometimes get too hot during the night. However, because of memory foam’s thickness, some thicker pads can actually be a good alternative to buying a completely new mattress when you need one.
Egg Crate: A foam egg-crate style of mattress pad is a less expensive option for more cushioning.
Down: Extra softness can be achieved with a down or feather type of mattress pad.These are extremely soft and great alternatives to mattress pads if you’re looking for something that’s more lightweight and soft. Filled with down, they’re great at regulating body heat when you’re sleeping, keeping you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. If you’re looking for one, go for one with about 200 thread counts, which makes it more durable but still soft.
Odor-Eliminating: These act as a protective layer between you and your mattress for those of us who are sensitive to smella.
Materials: Mattress pads are available in many types of material, such as cotton, wool, polyester, organic fabric, silk, foam, down, feathers and synthetic down.Cotton, latex and wool are commonly used for mattress pads. Cotton ones are usually thinner and quilted, but they are machine washable. Latex and wool pads are dust mite and mold-resistant, which makes them more durable than cotton. Almost counterintuitively, wool pads can work for the warmer months — since they’re absorbant, which helps keep you cool. However, natural latex will stand up to the test of time (20 years or more!) because it’s derived from rubber trees.
Lots to think about and the good news is that most of these products do have a return policy. So check the fine print and give it a try. And quite honestly, if you don’t think you need a mattress topper or heavy duty cover, that is your decision as well. We at DreamFit believe it is not only the fit of the sheet but the fit that is right for your sleep patterns as well.