When you bring a product into your home, you tend to assume that it’s safe. You assume the the item you’ve bought has gone through rigorous safety testing and that it’s not going to cause you any harm. This just isn’t the case.
The internet means that almost anyone can sell almost anything, and we’ve seen an increase in the last few years of documented cases of dangerous items being bought online and shipped into our living rooms, kitchens and bedrooms. It’s a huge cause for concern.
But quite often, without knowing it, we might be bringing perfectly legal toxic items into our home. Lots of products legally available today contain toxic substances. The levels are tested and monitored, but this doesn’t mean that these items are okay. As a general rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to avoid regular contact with things that are poisonous. Especially when you’re asleep and vulnerable.
So it’s important that you know that your mattress could be toxic. Could you be suffering symptoms associated with synthetic mattresses without even knowing it? Could your mattresses, the place you retire to after a long, hard day, be potentially toxic? Might your mattress be responsible for symptoms of sickness that don’t seem to be getting any better?
If you’re suffering from an itchy or sore throat, skin, nose or eye irritation, chest tightness, or difficulty breathing, your mattress might be to blame. This is particularly true if you are sleeping on memory foam, which often contains isocyanates, a product known to cause asthma, lung problems and irritation.
Mattresses can also sometimes contain irritants in the form of chemical flame retardants. The earliest chemical flame retardants were banned in the US in 1977 when it was discovered they were toxic. Chemical flame retardants used these days are deemed safe, but there is growing evidence that they are not very good for us, especially when we are frequently in close proximity with them, like we are when we sleep on them. You should be particularly careful about the chemical flame retardants found on some mattresses marketed for children and babies. Avoid cheap mattresses from unknown sellers. These can be very dangerous, especially for little lungs.
What makes mattresses toxic?
There are several things that can make your mattress toxic. These range from chemicals released during the natural off-gassing process to the use of materials that commonly cause allergies.
Brand new mattresses typically go through a process called off-gassing, which can last around a month. Off-gassing occurs when a newly manufactured product release volatile organic compounds. If you’ve ever bought a brand new mattress, you’ll be familiar with the smell that they produce. It can be overwhelming.
Some of the chemicals released during the off-gassing process are known carcinogens, though there is no evidence that mattress gas causes cancer. Still, when your mattress releases chemical odours, you’re breathing these in, sometimes for hours every night and for weeks at a time.
How do I know if my mattress is toxic?
If your mattress is new, it will likely have a list of materials attached to its tag, but in order to find out exactly what is in it, you’ll likely need to contact the manufacturer. However, if you don’t have the time and you want to be sure to avoid toxins, it’s a good idea to avoid the following materials.
Foam is a man-made chemical that traps little air bubbles so that the air acts as a cushion. The substance you’re using to push the air out when you lay on your mattress is volatile. It isn’t dangerous, but you might have a mild reaction for up to a month.
- Synthetic latex
Lots of people are allergic to latex without knowing it. If your skin is itchy or sore, it’s worth checking your mattress for latex, as this could be the problem. Look out for dry, irritated skin, swelling, runny nose, headache, sneezing, hives, asthma, cramps in the abdomen, sore throat and hoarseness.
What makes a good, non-toxic mattress?
Look for high quality mattresses made from natural materials, including horsehair and wool. Horsehair is the perfect moisture wicking material and is natural comfortable and springy. Wool has temperature regulation properties and is naturally hypoallergenic. It’s also 100% biodegradable and recyclable.
Look for reputable manufacturers. Avoid cheap mattresses, or expensive mattresses made of foam. Look for mattress sellers with available, qualified and knowledgeable customer service representatives, recyclable materials and an environmentally friendly attitude..
Ely mattresses are made from natural ingredients combined with 13 layers of comfort. They regulate body temperature, contour to your body, and come with a 10 year warranty and 30 day sleep trial. The Ely mattress comes in child and adult sizes. We’ve been working to produce the perfect mattress for forty years and we’ve manufactured millions of mattresses. Ely mattresses are comfortable, strong, trustworthy, durable, long-lasting and responsible; we take our duty to our customers and our environment extremely seriously.
For more information, you can contact us by email or by telephone through the details on our contact us page.