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Memory Foam Mattress Problems And Solutions

Memory foam mattress offers support and comfort to your body, but this type of mattress has hidden drawbacks that you should pay attention to. Memory foam mattresses contain hidden fiberglass content, can cause back pain, and may cause Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) in babies.

Fortunately, all of these problems have solutions. Below, we have curated problems associated with memory foam mattresses and how to solve these problems. Read on to discover more.

Table of Contents

1. Hidden Fiberglass Content

Fiberglass Content in the mattress

Most memory foam mattresses usually come with fiberglass placed in the fire barrier. This is mostly seen in cheap foam mattresses since fiberglass is cost-effective, and manufacturers love using it to meet flammability standards. It enables them to design memory foam mattresses using less expensive materials like fiberglass.

The problem with using fiberglass is that if not woven thoroughly into the mattress materials, the shards may escape when you remove the cover. The loose fiberglass shards may lead to skin irritation and breathing problems and removing them in your house may be challenging.


The solution is to avoid mattresses that come with fiberglass unless it’s woven deeply into your fire barrier. Also, the fiberglass shards should not be too loose for them not to escape. Alternatively, you can opt for a mattress that does not come with fiberglass entirely.

2. Back Pain

back pain when sleep in memory mattress

Many people will attest that they experience back pain when using a memory foam mattress. Memory foam tends to sink in areas where pressure is exerted regardless of the firmer options. It sinks more than materials manufacturers use in regular mattresses, such as batting, springs, and polyfoam.


You can select the appropriate firmness level. People with no pre-existing conditions can permanently minimize back pain by opting for a memory foam mattress with the right firmness level for them.

Working with the right firmness depends on your dominant sleeping position and body weight. You can let the 30 nights for a break in to finish, take up 30 nights of regular use for your new memory foam to adjust to your body shape, weight, and dominant sleeping position.

That’s why buying a mattress with a sleep trial is a great option. It will help you return it if it feels uncomfortable.

Another solution for back pain is to get a mattress alongside an adjustable bed to assist with minimizing back pain. You can consult your doctor about the appropriate mattress if you have already developed back pain.

Your doctor may also advise on an adjustable bed you can use. This will help you alter your bed’s angle to eliminate pressure from your back.

3. Sinks in Too Far

When using memory foam, you tend to sink too far into its materials. It can be ideal for light sleepers under 150 lbs. since it prevents them from feeling they are lying on a surface that seems too hard. It helps to remove pressure from their joints.

Unfortunately, persons weighing more than 200 lbs. might not enjoy that feeling since it makes the mattress harder and fixes you in an inappropriate posture.


The best solution for this problem is to choose a hybrid mattress with a firmer feel. If you are above 200 lbs. and love sleeping on your front, you should not use memory foam mattresses. Instead, you can go with a hybrid memory foam mattress, which is medium firm.

Hybrid memory foam mattress has a coil core and firmer surface tension, providing an extra plush back to protect you against too much material compression.

4. Sweating and Overheating

Most memory foam tends to trap heat, making you feel warmer or hotter than sleeping on a traditional mattress, which does not contain thick layers of dense foam.

Luckily, you may find some memory foam mattresses containing aerated foams and cooling gel infusions that are breathable. It can only be seen in modern memory foam mattresses rather than older ones.


You can opt for a hybrid design with memory foam containing graphite infusions and cooling gel to avoid feeling warmer when asleep. The two combination makes the mattress to be more breathable and cooler.

5. Difficult to Move Around in

rotate the mattress

Since memory foam is prone to sinking deeply, it cannot be easy to move around while sleeping. You will also have problems switching positions. It can also pose a challenge for a combination sleeper who likes shifting between different sleeping angles.


You can use a hybrid memory foam mattress. It will help you enjoy the pressure-relieving capabilities of the memory foam and reduce the friction areas that may be causing restlessness.

The hybrid mattress contains springs that assist in giving your mattress some pushback. You can also choose a firmer level if you are a back or front sleeper to use better surface tension, helping with mobility.

Another solution is to go for a hybrid latex foam mattress. Latex foam is extra springy compared to memory foam. It also has the same pressure-relieving capabilities, making it a great option for a restless combination sleeper.

6. Feels Firmer in Cold Temperatures

Memory foam may feel dense but pliable at room temperature. However, it becomes much softer and more adaptive when your body temperature produces heat for the material to warm up.

Additionally, memory foam may feel harder when the temperature reduces to freezing 32F.


You can control an ambient temperature of at least 68F. It will help the memory foam to feel comfortable when your body heat accesses the mattress materials.

If you use a room that is very cold or in an RV, roll blankets should be used to remove the discomfort of lying on cold memory foam.

7. Excess Chemical Smell After Unboxing

Most memory foam usually comes in a compressed box, producing a strong chemical smell. This happens when you remove the mattress from its packing, and it starts to expand towards its full size.

The cause of the smell is due to particles that get trapped in the mattress packaging as the mattress is compressed and sealed in the industry.


You can open your windows and wait for some hours. The off-gassing effect usually lasts for a few hours.

8. Allergic Reactions for Sensitive Sleepers

Low-quality memory foam mattresses can contain chemicals that may cause allergic reactions in sensitive sleepers. Sleepers with breathing problems, sensitive skin, and allergies may struggle with allergic reactions while using low-quality memory foam.

Also, some sleepers sneeze more while sleeping on this low-quality memory foam mattress.


You can check out foams that are certiPUR-US, OEKO-TEX, and others to be safe with your health. The certifications help you beware that the foam used in the mattress does not harbor harmful chemicals.

Another option is getting a mattress free from memory foam or containing organic or natural products.

9. Difficult to Flip Over the Mattress

Flip the mattress

You will find most memory foam difficult to flip over. Memory foam contains a one-sided design, meaning if you turn over the mattress, you will lie on the harder support core. This can make the mattress uncomfortable and even damage it.


You can get a double-sided mattress to flip the mattress over. It helps you get comfort from both sides of the mattress without experiencing pain.

10. Difficult and Heavy to Move

Most mattresses that come in a compressed box tend to be heavy. Also, it might be challenging to move once you expand the mattress. This challenge is common when transferring your mattress to a guest room and moving into the house.


You could consider a thinner all-foam mattress. It will serve you best if your sleeping position allows you to sleep on such a mattress. The mattress should be entirely designed with foam. It is lighter and easier to move around than a thicker mattress.

Additionally, the thinner foam mattress is ideal for average-weighted and lighter sleepers. If you weigh above 200 lbs, you might not enjoy this type of mattress.

11. Easily Stained

Memory foam is highly absorbent, making it easier to be stained. You will have to be careful to avoid causing spills on this mattress.


Using mattress protector is a good option. It helps prevent anything, including water, sweat, and urine, from soaking in your memory foam mattress.

12. Dangerous for Babies

It has been proven that memory foam may increase the risk of suffocation or rebreathing, causing Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID).

This is because memory foam tends to contour much closer to anything you put above. It can make breathing difficult for a child or toddler to breathe freely when their face accesses the memory foam.


Do not use memory foam for your babies. Avoid the urge to let your baby sleep on memory foam. You can get a suitable mattress for your baby that won’t make them suffocate.

13. Prone to Indents and Sagging

Indents and sagging are common problems that you will find in low-quality memory foam mattresses. It happens because the foam is not of good quality and cannot return to its natural state.

Although this problem can be seen in most mattresses, memory foam is more prone to it because of its highly adaptive nature.


You can get a high-quality hybrid memory foam mattress. The mattress should have high-density foam and more springs underneath for extra support.

14. Memory Foam Gets Warm

Memory foam tends to be warm, especially if you are a warm sleeper. You will find yourself turning and tossing frequently because the mattress has overheated. 

The cause of more warmth in memory is the material used for construction. The foam tends to trap most heat from your body, causing your bed to become warmer.


Consider a cooling memory foam mattress. You can get the one made for extra breathability. It does not trap heat or overheat. You can sleep on it even if you are a hot sleeper.

15. Incomplete Inflation

Incomplete inflation is a rare problem in memory foam, but it occurs. It all depends on the quality, size, and mattress. It can be due to cheap mattresses, whereby low-quality foam can have low resilience, making the mattress not expand as it should.

Incomplete inflation can also be due to a big mattress. In some scenarios, a king-sized mattress may collapse due to its weight and become hard to inflate to its required height.


You can exert pressure on the mattress by walking or kneading it with your hands. You can also use warm air by using a heater to increase the expansion of the mattress.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why does memory foam have a strong odor, and is it harmful?

Memory foam often has a strong odor due to the chemicals used in its production, such as polyurethane and flame retardants.

While these odors can be unpleasant, they are usually not harmful. However, individuals with chemical sensitivities or respiratory issues may experience discomfort.

How can I prevent excessive heat buildup in a memory foam mattress?

There are several steps you can take. Firstly, choose a memory foam mattress that has cooling properties or gel-infused technology, as these are designed to dissipate heat and keep you cooler during sleep.

Additionally, use breathable bedding materials such as cotton or bamboo sheets, as these allow for better airflow and ventilation. It’s also recommended to avoid using electric blankets or heating pads, as they can contribute to heat retention.

Lastly, you can consider using a mattress topper or mattress pad made of a cooling material, such as latex or wool, to further enhance temperature regulation.

Is sagging covered under mattress warranties?

Whether or not sagging is covered under mattress warranties depends on the specific terms and conditions of the warranty provided by the mattress manufacturer.

Some warranties may cover sagging issues, while others may only cover manufacturing defects or structural damage. It is important to thoroughly read and understand the warranty before making a purchase to determine what is covered and what is not.

Can memory foam mattresses trigger allergies?

Memory foam mattresses can potentially trigger allergies in some individuals. This is primarily due to the materials used in memory foam, such as polyurethane foam, which can release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that may irritate the respiratory system and trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals.

Additionally, memory foam mattresses can harbor dust mites, a common allergen, if not properly cleaned and maintained.

Are there weight limits for memory foam mattresses?

Yes, weight limits can vary for different memory foam mattresses. It is important to review the manufacturer’s guidelines and product specifications to ensure the mattress can support the desired weight. 

Some mattresses may have specific weight limits mentioned, while others may simply mention the maximum weight capacity or provide recommendations based on different mattress sizes.

Can I use an electric blanket or heating pad with a memory foam mattress?

Yes, you can use an electric blanket or heating pad with a memory foam mattress. However, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and safety instructions when using any electrical devices with your mattress.


Memory foam has various problems, but many can be fixed. Every solution that has been provided to each problem will help you know which one works for you and which one doesn’t.

Remember, the only way you should not use memory foam is when you have infants. Do not let your child sleep on a memory foam mattress because it can be fatal.

Author: Jessica

Jessica is a lover of both life and gardening. She loves to share his passion for both on social media. He often posts about his latest gardening projects, as well as tips and tricks for others who might be interested in starting their own gardens. She also frequently posts about the different aspects of his life that he enjoys, from spending time with friends and family to exploring new places.

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