Have you ever gotten a mattress home and realized it wasn't as comfortable as you expected it to be? This is completely normal, as mattresses take time to break in. If you're wondering how long to break in a mattress, the answer depends on the type of mattress you bought. Keep reading to find out how long it takes to break in various mattress types, how to speed up the break-in process, and more!
Why Do Mattresses Need to Be Broken In?
When you first lie down on a new mattress, it may feel too firm and uncomfortable. This is because the springs or fibers in the mattress are still tightly wound or compacted and have not had a chance to adjust to your body weight and shape.
Over time, these materials will loosen up and conform to your body, resulting in a more comfortable sleep surface.
How Long Does It Take to Break In a Mattress?
On average, it takes up to 4 weeks for a mattress to be broken in. But that’s a general recommendation - the time range will vary a bit based on the mattress type. In this section, we'll tell you how long it takes to break in various mattress types.
Memory Foam Mattresses
Memory foam mattresses are mattresses that are made of viscoelastic foam. They are known for their ability to conform to the shape of your body and provide pressure relief. Memory foam mattresses usually take about 2 to 4 weeks to break in.
Though, some people find that they need to wait for a longer span of time for their mattress to get to its optimal level of comfort.
Latex mattresses are made of latex foam, which is a type of material that is known for its bounciness and resilience. They generally take from a couple of days to 2 weeks to break in.
Innerspring mattresses are mattresses that have a coil support system. This type of mattress is known for being bouncy and supportive. Though, not as supportive as memory foam mattresses. Innerspring mattresses usually take about 30 days to break in.
But you can give it an extra couple of weeks if the mattress is still too firm for your liking after the first 30 days.
Hybrid mattresses are made of a combination of metal coils and memory foam or latex. They are bouncy like an innerspring mattress but also conform to your body for more comfortable rest.
It can be difficult to say how long it will take for a hybrid mattress to be broken in, as it depends on the materials used and how much of each material is present. But in general, you can expect a hybrid mattress to take about 2 to 4 weeks to break in.
Note: The above estimates are based on averages and generalizations. But everyone and every mattress is different, so it's possible that you may need more or less time to break in your mattress. If you find that your mattress is still too firm after the above-stated timeframes, we recommend taking steps to soften it up (more on that later).
How to Minimize Your Mattress’s Break-In Time
Do the timeframes listed above sound too long? If so, there are a few things you can do to break in your mattress more quickly. That’s what we’ll focus on in this section.
Sleep on Your Mattress Every Night
One of the best ways to break in your mattress is to sleep on it every night. This will give the materials in your mattress more time each day to adjust to your body weight and shape.
If you can, try to sleep on your mattress for at least 7 to 8 hours each night. But even if you can only manage a few hours, every bit of sleep will help to break the mattress in.
Though it may be a bit uncomfortable at first, it's important to persevere and give the mattress time to adjust.
Don't Let it Get Too Cold in the Room
During the time that you are breaking in your mattress, make sure not to let the room get too cold. It's best to keep the room temperature on the warmer side. This will help the materials in the mattress to soften and become more pliable.
If the room is too cold, the mattress's materials will be more rigid, slowing down the break-in process.
Put Pressure on the Mattress
Putting pressure on the mattress can also shorten its break-in time. This means sitting or lying down on the mattress even when you're not sleeping. You can even roll or gently bounce on it. But don't be too rough, as you don't want to damage the mattress.
If you don't like the idea of putting pressure on the mattress using the above methods, you can try placing moderately heavy items on top of the mattress. Think storage boxes or a flat shoe organizer.
Is it Normal for a New Mattress to Hurt your Back?
When you get a new mattress, it is common for it to feel harder than it is supposed to feel. Your body is not yet used to the new support and firmness level, and this is on top of the fact that mattresses need some break-in time. So, it is 100% normal for your back to feel a little sore as you’re adjusting to a new mattress.
While you're getting used to the mattress (and the mattress is being broken in), it may help to sleep with a pillow between your knees. This will take some of the pressure off of your lower back. You can also try placing a pillow under your stomach and pelvis area.
However, if the pain is severe or persists for more than a week or so, you may need to take action - we’ll get into that soon.
Do Mattresses Get Softer Over Time?
Even after the initial break-in process is complete, many mattresses will continue to soften slightly over time. This is due to several factors - the weight of your body, changes in temperature and humidity, and the amount of time that you spend on the mattress each day.
However, this change is usually very minor, and most people don't notice it. So, if your mattress gets too soft over time, you may need to replace it, as that could be a sign of wear and tear or mattress damage.
How to Make a Mattress Softer or Firmer After Breaking It In
Think about the following scenario: you've tried sleeping on your mattress for a few weeks, and it's just not breaking in the way you hoped it would. You might be tempted to get rid of your mattress, but that's not always necessary. Here are some ways to make a mattress softer or harder after it is broken in:
To make the mattress softer:
- Add a mattress topper. A mattress topper can be a great way to make an existing mattress softer or firmer. It works by adding a supplementary layer of cushioning and support on top of the mattress. You'll get instant comfort and support that can easily be adjusted to suit your needs.
- Adjust the bed base. If your mattress is too hard, you can try adjusting the bed base. Removing a few of the slats on the bed base can make a big difference - just don’t remove too many, or your mattress will sag.
- Try a sprung divan base. If you're looking for a softer mattress, a sprung divan base is the way to go. They have metal springs and coils that are designed to provide extra cushioning and support.
- Change up your bedding. Pillows and comforters can add extra cushioning and support to your mattress, turning any too-firm mattress into one that is just right. Use as many pillows or blankets as you need.
To make the mattress firmer:
- Replace the box spring. A new box spring can enhance your mattress’s firmness for better joint support and less sagging.
- Use a solid platform base. A solid platform base is another option that provides a firm foundation for the mattress and keeps it from sinking in.
Do You Need to Exchange or Replace the Mattress?
If you've tried the above tips without success, don't worry. The only solution may be to exchange or replace the mattress. Sometimes, the mattress just isn't the right fit for you and your needs.
If that's the case, reach out to the mattress manufacturer to find out if they would be willing to exchange or replace your mattress. The best mattress companies are always willing to work with you and help you find a better mattress.
In cases where the mattress company isn't able to offer an exchange or replacement, it's time to start shopping around for a new mattress. Here are some tips to make the mattress selection process a little easier:
- Make sure to do your research. Customer reviews are very telling.
- Select the right firmness. Medium-firm is the ideal firmness for most people.
- Invest in a high-quality mattress type, like gel memory foam. It will provide you with the comfort and support you need for a great night's sleep.
So, there you have it: everything you need to know about how long it takes to break in a mattress, how to make a broken-in mattress more comfortable, and more. Adjusting to a new mattress takes time and effort, but now you’re ready for it. We hope you found this article to be helpful, and we wish you the best in your pursuit of a comfy mattress and years of good rest.
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