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If a person feels that their mattress is too soft or lacking support, using a firm mattress topper may help. A topper can be an easy and affordable way to add firmness to a mattress without replacing it.
This article looks at the pros and cons of mattress toppers, some points to consider when choosing, and some of the best options on the market.
According to the International Chiropractors Association, using a mattress that offers a lack of support can cause poor spinal alignment. This can result in increased muscle tension, as the muscles will need to work harder to stabilize the spine. A mattress topper may help with this.
Some pros of using a firm mattress topper include the following:
- They add greater support and spinal alignment.
- They are often more affordable than replacing a mattress.
- They allow testing of a firmer sleeping surface without investing in a new mattress.
- They are easy to transport if sleeping away from home.
- They are useful for adapting a mattress to different sleepers or sleeping styles.
Some cons of using a firm mattress topper include the following:
- Some polyurethane mattress toppers may contain harmful volatile organic compounds, which may cause health issues such as respiratory issues, headaches, organ damage, and cancer.
- Mattress toppers may contain toxic fire retardants, which may cause harmful health effects such as hormone disruption, cancer, and neurological issues.
- PVC or vinyl covers may contain harmful chemicals, which may cause damage to developing reproductive systems.
- A mattress topper may not be effective if a mattress is sagging or has large soft spots
- Some toppers can be expensive, so people may find that it is better to invest in a new mattress, depending on the results they want.
People may want to consider the following points when choosing a firm mattress topper:
- If a person experiences overheating while sleeping, they may wish to look for breathability and cooling features, especially in foam mattress toppers, which can trap heat.
- If a person is looking for extra support, they may wish to look for a topper that supports spinal alignment and relieves pressure points.
- It may be best to look for long lasting, durable materials such as natural latex, which is more durable than petroleum-based foams.
- Investing in a high quality product may initially be more expensive, but it may maximize longevity.
- Some mattress toppers may be spot clean only, so it may be best to consider a removable, washable cover.
Some mattress toppers use more sustainable production methods and materials than others. Certifications can indicate a lower environmental impact of a product, as well as non-toxicity.
For example, people can look for the following certifications:
- Global Organic Latex Standard (GOLS)
- Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS)
- GREENGUARD Gold
- OEKO-TEX STANDARD 100
- Made Safe
Products with a warranty and sleep trial allow people to test a product before committing.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried any of these products. All information presented is purely research-based.
PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper
The PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper is made from 100% natural Talalay latex.
People can choose from four different firmness levels, including firm and extra firm. They can also choose between 2- or 3-inch (in) thickness.
This mattress topper is:
- designed to relieve pressure points
- OEKO-TEX STANDARD 100 and GREENGUARD Gold certified
- dust mite resistant
- designed to allow airflow
Avocado Vegan Topper
The Avocado Vegan topper is made from organic latex and cotton, and people can choose a firm option.
This mattress topper:
- uses GOLS-certified latex, for gentle support
- uses GOTS-certified cotton, for cooling and wicking moisture
- has certification from Vegan Action
- is Made Safe- and GREENGUARD Gold-certified
- has carbon negative production and shipping
Sealy Essentials Mattress Topper
The Sealy Essentials is a 3-in firm foam mattress topper. It contains gel-infused memory foam to help regulate temperature while sleeping.
This mattress topper is medium-soft and contours to the body. It has generally received positive online reviews.
ViscoSoft Mattress Topper
The ViscoSoft Mattress Topper is a 3-in, high density memory foam topper with a medium-firm feel. There are seven size options, and it has a removable, washable, and hypoallergenic cover.
The company claims that this mattress topper is durable and minimizes motion transfer, which is useful when multiple people share a bed. The topper is slip resistant and comes with straps to secure it to the mattress.
The gel-infused memory foam can help regulate temperature during sleep.
BedStory Mattress Topper
This CertiPUR-US-certified memory foam topper is lightly infused with natural lavender oil for a relaxing scent.
The memory foam is also ventilated for airflow, and it contours to the body. This helps relieve pressure points and evenly support body weight.
Customers can choose from five size options and 2- or 3-in thickness. The mattress topper is hypoallergenic.
Molecule Triple Zone Mattress Topper
This mattress topper is specifically designed to provide support and pressure relief. The three targeted zones support different areas of the body.
The company claims that this mattress topper helps regulate temperature, allow airflow, and control moisture.
This CertiPUR-US-certified mattress topper is available in six size options.
Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress Topper
This CertiPUR-US-certified mattress topper uses green tea and charcoal to eliminate odors and reduce moisture.
People can choose from 1.5- to 4-in thickness, and there are six size options.
Layers of memory foam and high density foam contour to the body, which may help ease physical aches and pains.
Mattress pads are similar to mattress toppers, but these usually fit over a mattress in a similar way to a fitted sheet.
A mattress pad may have quilting and contain down. Many options on the market are hypoallergenic and breathable, and some reviews suggest that they provide a cooler, more supportive surface than some foam toppers.
Adding a firm mattress topper to a mattress may help create a more supportive sleeping surface.
If a mattress is sagging or has large dips, however, a mattress topper may not be effective. In these cases, a person may benefit from buying a new mattress.