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Children may find that memory foam mattresses provide them with a comfortable, supportive sleep surface.
The process of choosing the right memory foam mattress may be daunting.
However, the following information should help people make an informed decision when considering buying a memory foam mattress for a child.
Some important considerations to make when choosing a memory foam mattress for a child include:
- the child’s age
- the durability of the materials
- the toxicity of the materials
Each child has unique sleep needs and preferences. It may also help to consider their unique health needs. For example, children who tend to sleep hot — meaning that they overheat during sleep — may need a mattress that has a cooling layer.
If a child experiences night sweats or bedwetting, using waterproof covers and materials may help. For children with allergies, on the other hand, mattresses made using hypoallergenic materials may offer benefits.
Some other factors to consider include:
- the sustainability of the materials used
- whether or not the manufacturers offer delivery and returns
- the odor from the new mattress
Ultimately, decisions about what is important for the child will vary greatly. In general, it is best to consider any health requirements and preferences.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried any of these products. All information presented here is purely research-based.
Nectar Memory Foam Mattress
Nectar offer their memory foam mattress in a twin size. The mattress features a cooling, breathable memory foam and several layers for comfort and support.
The manufacturers claim that this mattress supports pressure points and spinal alignment. The medium firm feel may suit side sleepers.
This mattress comes with a 365-day trial and a forever warranty.
Purple Kid Mattress
Purple make memory foam and hybrid mattresses for adults and children.
One of the key features of this mattress is the top grid gel layer. Purple state that this provides comfort and cooling benefits. This mattress also contains Purple’s signature grid as a top layer. The foam and gel are designed for the lighter weight of toddlers, children, and teenagers.
The materials in this mattress are Clean Air GOLD and CertiPUR-US certified, which means that they contain few or no chemicals that may be toxic to people.
The mattress includes features such as:
- a removable, washable cover
- a 100-night trial
- a 10-year warranty
Purple also offer a mattress protector, a frame, and other accessories for an additional price.
My BKB – Big Kids Bed by Nest Bedding
Nest Bedding offer the My BKB – Big Kids Bed. It uses CertiPUR-US certified foams and a non-chemical fire barrier.
The mattress is available in firm and medium support varieties. The manufacturers recommend choosing the medium option for side sleepers.
This mattress fits many bed frames and is suitable for use on a various surfaces, including the floor.
It comes with a 100-night trial and a lifetime warranty.
Zinus Green Tea Memory Foam Twin Mattress
Zinus offer a memory foam mattress infused with green tea extract and charcoal. The manufacturers claim that these help absorb odors and moisture.
This mattress comes in various sizes, offering the choice of a 6- or 8-inch mattress depending on which may better fit the child’s needs.
The mattress contains three layers: a memory foam layer, a comfort foam layer, and a support foam layer. The foam is CertiPUR-US certified.
The mattress also comes with a 10-year warranty and a 100-night trial.
Perfect Cloud Kids Signature Mattress
Perfect Cloud offer a twin-sized mattress for kids that comes with a free memory foam pillow and a teddy bear.
The mattress uses durable foam and is hypoallergenic. The cover is removable and washable.
Other features include:
- a 10-year warranty
- free shipping and returns
- a 120-night sleep trial
A listing on Amazon states that the mattress meets the “standards” of CertiPUR-US, but the manufacturers’ website does not specifically state that their product is CertiPUR-US certified.
Other mattresses made from different materials may work better for some children.
Some alternative mattress materials include:
- Latex: This provides a similar support structure to memory foam but is often all-natural and has a natural cooling effect. Learn more about latex mattresses here.
- Hybrid: This is a combination of memory foam and coils, with foam creating the comfort layer and coils forming the support layer. Learn more about hybrid mattresses here.
- Springs: These mattresses use coils for support and other materials for comfort. Learn about the differences between memory foam and spring mattresses here.
Children’s sleep needs vary by age. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), children need the following hours each night of sleep:
- ages 3–5 years: 10–13 hours
- ages 6–12 years: 9–12 hours
- ages 13–18 years: 8–10 hours
Studies into how mattresses affect children’s sleep are lacking.
In one 2009 study, researchers discussed some of the discrepancies in data about mattresses.
For their study of adult participants, they indicated that a newer sleep system, compared with their older sleep system (greater than 5 years old), helped improve sleep quality and reduce pain. However, they did not fully specify the sleep system that each person used.
A 2015 review of studies identified several potential benefits of finding the right mattress. These include improved sleep quality, reduction of aches and pain, and better spinal alignment. The researchers indicated that a medium firm, self-adjusted mattress may be the best choice for most people.
However, these and other studies do not directly address the needs of children, which means that generalizations for this age group are difficult to make.
Parents and caregivers should not rush to switch their infant or toddler to an adult bed. In an older study, researchers found that having children under 2 years old sleep on an adult mattress can lead to an increased risk of death due to suffocation either from the mattress or a co-sleeping adult or sibling.
Only children over the age of 2 years should sleep on an adult mattress. It may help to base the decision to switch to a larger mattress on the child’s readiness.
Parents and caregivers who are interested in memory foam mattresses should consider the child’s comfort needs, the toxicity of the materials used, and the support they offer for their child’s body.
Other considerations should include cost, any allergies, the materials used, and the cooling effects of the mattress.
There is only limited research into memory foam mattresses and children. Studies that look at adults do not typically specify the mattress type that is best for a person.
People should use caution before buying a mattress based on claims from the manufacturers.