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Time to Replace Your Mattress? – Part 3: Trust Your Eyes

The third entry in our five-part series aimed at helping you identify when it’s time to get a new mattress revolves around a good, old-fashioned eyeball test.

Previous posts in this series:
When is it Time to Replace Your Mattress? – Part I: It’s too Old!
When is it Time to Replace Your Mattress? – Part II: It’s too Hard to Move!

Tip #3. It Looks Worn Out

Smooth surfaces and straight lines are indicative of a quality mattress

This tip is fairly interconnected to your ability to move on a mattress, but if you can visually tell it’s wearing out, that’s a pretty strong sign you need to start shopping. This may be a rather obvious suggestion, but with the fast-paced lives we lead, chances are you rarely take a good look at your bed. A quality mattress is covered by layer upon layer of sheets and blankets, each one making it a little more difficult to assess the state of what lies beneath. Think about how often you take a minute to survey the appearance of your mattress. Not your sheets, not your superior bed-making abilities, but the mattress. Probably not very often, if ever. However, that is exactly what you should do.

If you hop in and out of bed without thinking, leaving behind a swirl of pillows, sheets and covers, you’re probably not going to see any issues with your mattress. One simple tip for giving your mattress a periodic once-over is to take a look every time you change your sheets. A crisply made bed would seemingly show imperfections in a mattress, but smoothed over, taught sheets can actually mask low points, wrinkles or dips.

When it’s time to wash your sheets, take everything off the bed, including the mattress pad and the allergy cover if you use one, until you’re looking at the mattress’ quilted surface. Take a step back and see if you notice any dips, crevasses or lumps. Stains can indicate damage that open the possibility your mattress may be harboring irritants and allergens that are undermining your sleep experience. Firmly run a hand over it, and see if it feels smooth, strong and even across its surface. Another hint is to pay attention to whether or not it squeaks and creaks as you move. Foam and latex mattresses are always going to be silent, one of their many benefits, but noise is one warning sign of deterioration in innerspring beds.

By using it every day, you can become so used to what has happened to your mattress, you may not notice the gradual deterioration of your sleeping experience. This is why taking the occasional critical look at your mattress is so important. Because when you look at it, you should think, “This looks like a mattress.”  Not, “This looks lumpier than my morning oatmeal.”

For the next posts in our series, click here:
When is it Time to Replace Your Mattress? – Part IV: Allergies
When is it Time to Replace Your Mattress? – Part V: You’re Uncomfortable

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