Countless studies have proven that a good night’s sleep is essential for maintaining good physical and mental health. While mattresses are important in getting that comfort you need when you lie down to sleep, your mattress isn’t alone in cradling your body.
We’ve all been in this situation—you lay in bed, turning and tossing for hours. For some reason, you just can’t seem to get comfortable. You stare at the clock as you idly watch the time go by, wondering why sleep is eluding you.
While the first culprit would usually be the mattress, the answer may actually depend on the existence—or lack thereof—of your mattress foundation.
What is a mattress foundation?
The mattress foundation or bed frame provides support to hold up your mattress and comes in different designs. There are four common designs:
- Box spring – Similar to spring mattresses, the box spring is made from real springs that prop up your mattress. The older ones made a lot of noise and were heavy to move. However, recent design innovations have removed the springs and are more lightweight.
- Slatted – Slatted foundations use planks of wood, metal, plastic, or any other suitable material that can be spread evenly in a rectangular box to provide support. They are more lightweight than bunkie boards or box springs. Just make sure to opt for the ones where the slats are placed closer to each other to prevent discomfort due to sagging.
- Bunkie board – This type of foundation uses a solid slab of plywood or metal, leaving no gaps and without any springs. This foundation works great for memory foam mattresses. Since the base is very flat and stable, the memory foam is able to spread evenly, which also supports the body more evenly.
- Adjustable – This type of mattress foundation is usually found in hospitals, but are becoming more and more common in households as well. This type of foundation allows for easy adjusting of angles for maximum comfort using electronics.
Why do I need a mattress foundation?
Your mattress foundation actually plays a big role in giving you that sleep-worthy bed. Here are three reasons why your choice of mattress foundation matters.
1. Durability – Your foundation is going to help your mattress last longer by absorbing motion and weight. Getting a correctly fitted foundation will help your mattress for the long term.
Since no two foundations are made exactly the same, you will want to pay attention to details. For example, slatted foundations are great for both air flow and budget considerations. However, you should always choose one that has narrower gaps to avoid sagging, which often leads to discomfort in the long run.
2. Comfort – Box springs provide a lot of height and support, but could cause discomfort due to the noise it makes when you move. Meanwhile, wide gaps between slatted foundations can cause sagging, which may result in discomfort after a while.
3. Easy Access – It’s perfectly possible to use no bed frame at all and just put your mattress on the floor. However, this will definitely make it harder to get up. A good foundation adds about 16 inches of height, which makes getting in and out of bed easier.
While mattresses are definitely important in getting a good night’s sleep, it doesn’t usually tell the whole story. To know which mattress foundation is right for you, it’s best to test the foundation with the mattress you also intend to buy for your use.
If you’re not buying a new mattress, and/or have noa access to a physical store, the next best thing is to read online mattress reviews to get a better idea of how the mattress foundation has worked for others.
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