How Mattresses Evolved Through the Years

The key to a good night slumber cannot only depend on intangible factors like the person’s stress level, possible effect of sleeping disorders, and room temperature—for all you know it may have been the pocket spring mattress that you have been using since 1995 that was never the right fit for you and can even be the culprit of the back spasms that has been preventing you to have a comfortable and restful night all this time. So it is only imperative to know which mattress can best serve your sleeping needs. And it wouldn’t hurt to read how all these myriad of mattresses we see in fancy stores how come to life.
A Trip Down Memory Lane

The earliest of mattresses are said to have been conceived and invented as early as the Neolithic period which dates back 10, 000 years. One can only imagine how visually primitive these were, and it wasn’t until the Egyptians began to sleep on raised platforms had these tradition changed in 3400 BC. The Roman Empire on the other hand (Romans being always aesthetically inclined) were known to be the first ones to create luxury beds that were made f hay, wool, feathers, reeds and were often adorned with gold and silver.  Finer materials like silks and velvets filled with straw, pea shucks, and feathers alternatively were popularized during the Renaissance period. In the 16th to 19th century, Louis XIV was known to be a lounging enthusiast and was rumoured to have about 413 beds of larger and flashier mattresses. The setback though for this type of bed was that it attracted bed bugs—and it was not until the 18th century that cotton mattresses replaced such bug-attracting mattresses. In 1965, beds became more modern with the use of coil springs which were also patented sometime around this century.
Until the 20th century, continuous evolution of man’s sleeping mattress has been observed. Sometime in the 1930s, upholstery and innerspring mattresses became household staples. In the ‘40s, futons were finally introduced;  the 50s saw pillows and mattresses made of foam rubbers—and not long enough, waterbeds were invented. It was also in the ‘60s that adjustable beds were already selling the market. In the ‘70s, one of NASA’s important inventions was the memory foam mattress  which aimed to “improve cushioning and crash protection for airplane pilots and passengers. The memory form mattress is often preferred by insomnia clients who are often bothered by traditional faulty bed springs or elderly people who are light sleepers; the ‘80s was the time that the airbed came to the market, and the ‘90s saw the design of a queen-sized mattress. Fast forward to the 2000s and the contemporary time, customization according to the clients’ needs and preferences have been made possible. Today, with a thousand of mattresses in different forms, sizes, and materials, it is impossible to think what else can man invent.


A Matter Of  Preference

Perhaps for traditionalists, it is still comforting and conventional to choose natural latex mattress that one can easily buy anywhere in Singapore, people with special needs like being particular with beds that aid in easing deformities of bodily parts like joints and spines are likely to choose orthopaedic mattress for their own good and convenience. Such mattress are specially designed, too, to combat possible back pains that can are common among older people.


Other Important Consideration

Now that we are somehow equipped with the knowledge on how mattresses evolved through time—you may be ready to shop for your own mattress soon. The thing is, with too many products to choose from,  it is easy to feel dizzy and confused as you navigate through the world of mattresses—and it can seriously cause an unwanted splitting headache if you do not know what you are looking for in the first place
How do we know which is the best one for us? An expert associate professor of orthopaedic surgery and neurosurgery at Santa Monica UCLA medical center, Dr. Arya Nick Shamie explained the importance the mattress being able to support our body in a neutral position, “If the mattress is too firm, it will push on those main pressure points and take you out of alignment”. It is a matter of the perfect fit as professionals like Michael Breus, PhD, would suggest. Not that one bed is better than the other, but the consideration should be which is better for a particular patient.  However, most experts agree that people with lower back pain seem to respond well with firmer beds.