Some people sleep for up to a third of their life. Your pillow is one of the most important factors that may make or break a good night’s sleep. Memory foam pillows are popular and may appeal to you if you’re seeking a non-traditional pillow option. But can they provide greater support for your head and neck, and do they help you sleep better?
Memory foam is one of the most contentious of all pillow fillings. You’ll probably refuse to sleep on it or sleep on something else. Memory foam is a dense and long-lasting polymer that moulds to your head and neck while you sleep, offering the right degree of support. As a result, many individuals are put off by these pillows at first since they feel weird to sleep on.
Before you rush out to purchase one, think about if a memory foam pillow will fit your sleeping style, as they may be pricey. Our information below will assist you in making your decision because we have covered practically every detail you need to know about memory foam pillows.
First, What Is a Memory Foam?
Polyurethane is the primary component of memory foam. Polyurethane is a polymer (a material having huge molecules composed of many tiny, similar subunits bound together). This is a form of plastic that may be found in a wide range of items, including couches, mattresses, insulation, and spray foam. It derives its name from its ability to alter shape under pressure yet return to its original shape once the pressure is removed. This allows it to conform to your specific shape and provide additional head and neck support.
What is Memory Foam Made Of?
Memory foam is a kind of polyurethane foam known as “viscoelastic” polyurethane foam or low-resistance polyurethane foam (LRPu). It is made by combining several chemicals and additives to polyurethane, which vary depending on the type of foam being produced. Finally, these compounds have an impact on two of the most important properties of memory foam: viscosity and elasticity. When we say memory foam is “viscous,” we imply that it takes a long time to change form under pressure or to transmit energy from one location to another.
When we say a material is “elastic,” we imply that it can stretch or contort but will return to its original shape or size once the stretching force is removed. Different manufacturers have different “recipes” for the chemicals they add to foam and the techniques they employ to make foam. These formulations and techniques, which typically remain private secrets, have an impact on the feel and function of each specific memory foam product. However, most viscoelastic foam used in memory foam mattresses contains at least some degree of a substance known as polyether polyol, which contributes to the foam’s elasticity and viscosity.
How Memory Foam Work
As previously stated, memory foam pillows are meant to gradually adapt to the body in reaction to pressure, therefore equally distributing body weight. They are also intended to be robust, returning to their normal shape once body weight and pressure are removed. Memory foam reacts differently depending on how much pressure, or “force,” is applied to it. When pressure is applied fast, the foam tends to change shape more slowly, or “reluctantly.” This implies that memory foam is great at absorbing impact force, which is why it was first utilized in sectors such as space shuttle construction. When utilized as a mattress material, this property helps the mattress cushion the body equally and provides the gradual contouring effect as the mattress responds to the impact of your body and re-forms around your curves.
Who Should Use Memory Foam Pillows?
Anyone who wakes up with a stiff or painful neck, headaches, or overall difficulty sleeping comfortably may benefit from using a memory foam pillow. A memory foam pillow may give relief to neck discomfort caused by accident or disease.
How To Choose a Memory Foam Pillow?
Once you’ve concluded that a memory foam pillow could be a good fit for your sleeping pattern, there are a few more things to think about before hitting the ‘purchase’ button.
- Are you prone to being hot and sweaty at night? Some memory foam pillows promise to be cooling. These have permeable coverings or special fillers meant to control your body temperature, such as gel.
- Some memory foam pillows are pre-shaped and moulded to help you sleep with a better alignment of your neck and spine. If you’re suffering from neck pain, give one of them a try.
How Long Should a Memory Foam Pillow Last?
Memory foam pillows are more resilient and last longer than other types of pillows, but you should replace yours after two to three years of regular use. Fold it in half to see whether it needs to be replaced; if it stays folded, it’s time to acquire a new one. Lumpy pillows that no longer provide proper support should also be replaced. Add a pillow protector between the pillow and the pillowcase to protect it from stains.
The Benefits of Using a Memory Foam Pillow
Memory foam molds to each individual because, as previously said, it is intended to respond to pressure and heat from the body. When you lift your body weight, the foam returns to its original form and shape. Before making a purchase, consider the following advantages:
- Spinal Alignment
Memory foam’s contouring capabilities have the added benefit of promoting healthy spinal alignment and providing lumbar support for many sleepers. When a surface, like memory foam, reacts to the natural curves of the body, it might be simpler to discover sleeping positions that maintain your spine in neutral alignment. This can reduce tossing and turning during night, as well as morning back stiffness and tightness.
- Therapeutic Memory Foam for Neck Pain
In a recent research by Neck Solutions, the result states that therapeutic memory foam pillows support the head at the correct height when sleeping on the side or back. This can relieve whiplash injuries, simple neck strain and even sedentary strain from working on a computer.
- Stability Against Motion Transfer
Memory foam absorbs and avoids motion transmission. This promotes stability by preventing motion transfer and keeping your neck and spine aligned.
- Durability and Aesthetics
Foam Memory Pillows keep their form and do not flatten like ordinary pillows. Memory foam molds to the contour of the neck and head as it cools, but it returns to its original shape as it cools. Over time, feather and fiber filled or batted pillows develop lumps, flatten, or simply wear out. Memory foam returns to its original shape repeatedly. Simply by design, they outlive other high-quality pillows.
One big advantage of memory foam mattresses for allergy sufferers is that they are hypoallergenic. Memory foam mattresses are less prone to collect and accumulate allergens such as dust mites, mildew, and other common irritants due to their thick structure.
Who Shouldn’t Use Memory Foam Pillows?
- People who feel hot when sleeping: Some memory foam pillows might trap heat or get warmer as you lie on them. Some claim they make them sweat. Be aware of this if you are a hot sleeper.
- Individuals who are sensitive to off-gassing: Some memory foam products include substances known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs). When the cushion is fresh, these compounds might emit a foul odor. This is referred to as off-gassing. Some people may be too sensitive to odors. It can cause difficulty breathing, headaches, nausea, eye and throat discomfort, and asthma attacks. In a well-ventilated room, the odor should diminish within a few days or a week. You may also check for brands branded “low VOCs.”