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The memory foam mattresses market has been rapidly growing over the years. A recent report by Statista revealed that the memory foam mattress and pillow industry generated over $5 billion in the United States. In a 2016 survey, Statista found that up to 62% of respondents prefer memory foam mattresses.
In recent years, memory foam gel mattress have been introduced into the market. Both gel memory foam and the regular memory foam improve comfort, possess pressure-relieving qualities, and help in alleviating back pain and soreness. Moreover, they help prevent sleep-related disorders, including insomnia and narcolepsy.
While both give you almost the same benefits, gel memory foam has a tad bit advantage over the traditional memory foam mattress. This article gives you a walkthrough on each type of memory foam mattresses and their differences.
Traditional Memory Foam Mattresses
The memory foam was first introduced in the mid-1960s. It was initially designed for the NASA airplane seats. It is both soft and high-energy-absorbent.
As people lie on the mattress, the memory foam would soften as a result of their body heat. As the mattress softens, it would surround their body and relieve their pressure points. The plush surface of the memory foams offers comfort and supports all kinds of sleepers. They distribute the body weight uniformly across their surfaces to improve lumbar support and relieve pain.
Moreover, conventional memory foam restricts motion transfer. Every cell of the foam absorbs shock and limits the transfer of motion from one side of the mattress to the other. This feature is beneficial for those who sleep with others in one bed, especially with sleepers who have the habit of tossing and turning around through the night. The motion isolation quality makes sure that the sleeper will not get disturbed due to the movement of other co-sleepers.
However, the memory foam’s dense structure may lead to overheating, limited airflow, and tends to retain heat. As a result, people who are sleeping on a conventional memory foam mattress may feel hot and sweaty.
Gel Memory Foam Mattresses
Gel-infused memory foam mattresses were first introduced into the market back in 2011. It was created mainly to address the concern of conventional memory foam’s heat retention.
The gel contains phase-changing materials or PCMs. These components absorb latent heat as they undergo a physical change, such as from liquid to solid or vice-versa. During the conversion, the gel absorbs heat.
Hence, while memory foam gel mattress possesses all the benefits of conventional memory foam, it can prevent heat retention. It combats heat retention by dispelling heat away from the sleepers’ body and lets them experience a cool and pleasant sleep.
The manufacturer infuses gel inside the memory foam in several ways. Some manufacturers introduce the gel in the form of microbeads, while others incorporate a layer of gel pad on either the top or below the mattress. Other times, the gel is swirled into the memory foam mattress.
Conventional memory foam and gel-infused memory foam mattresses can provide comfort and relieve pressure points. However, unlike the traditional memory foam that retains heat, gel memory foam mattresses keep you cool by dissipating and absorbing your body heat. Also, this type of mattress is typically designed in a combination of extra layers, which will help prevent you from sinking too deep into the bed.