If you are looking for a way to protect your mattress and provide a safer and more comfortable sleep, you have likely come across products from two different camps: mattress pads and mattress protectors. Which one is right for you and your family? Let’s talk about what they have in common, and what sets them apart:
What are mattress pads?
Arguably the most common form of mattress protector you’ll see when shopping online or browsing through a home goods store is a “mattress pad.” A mattress pad is a relatively thick quilted cover that sits on top of your mattress like fitted sheet, acting as a separator from you and the surface of the mattress.
People often look for a mattress pad once the mattress they are currently sleeping on becomes uncomfortable. In most cases, you may be better served replacing the mattress instead of opting for a mattress pad. This is due to the fact that mattresses often lose both support and comfort over time. Adding a mattress pad will increase the comfort, but will do nothing to fix the lost support.
Also, mattress pads generally aren’t the best protective choice for your bed, as they are rarely designed to block fluids, bacteria, and allergens. Worse, the thick padding used on a mattress pad can often harbor tons of dust mites in just a short time, exacerbating allergy and asthma symptoms. Fully removing those dust mites and their fecal matter can be difficult, if not impossible.
What are mattress protectors?
Fitted-sheet style protectors most often feature a cotton, Tencel or polyester surfaces with stretchy sides and an elastic fitting band that wraps under the bottom of the mattress. The primary purpose of a mattress protector is to offer valuable protection against allergens and fluids safeguarding your mattress. Protectors are easy to install and wash, and protect against most daily threats to the health of your sleep environment. Although mattress protectors are designed to be as thin as possible, so as not to change the feel of your mattress, most premium brands offer warranties for as much as 10 years, demonstrating the quality of even the thinnest protectors.
Mattress protectors are great for those purchasing a new mattress or like their mattresses feel as once the protector is installed, it will continue to have that exact same feel and experience. Protectors are an especially good choice for people that suffer from allergies or asthma. Since a protector doesn’t have any filler, there is nowhere for dust mites or other allergens to hide; with regular laundering, it’s easy to eliminate anything residing on the surface of the protector.
Through advances in design and manufacturing, modern protectors are able to very effectively protect against liquids and other threats, all without changing the feel of your mattress. With the right design, these modern protectors will wick away moisture while letting air flow freely through the bed, keeping the sleeper cool and dry.
Which one is right for me?
When weighing out the pros and cons of each design, many people will opt for a mattress protector instead of a mattress pad. If you have an uncomfortable mattress and want to buy yourself a little time before replacing it, a mattress pad may help temporarily. If you want to protect your bed against fluids and allergens while protecting the feel of your mattress, a protector is the obvious choice.