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Second latex mattress gone soft! 09 Apr 2013 20:20 #1

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I am beginning to sound like a broken record! Background: I bought a latex mattress from Denver Mattress in March. After only a few days it became too soft in my sleeping area and I began to get a "hammocking" effect. I replaced that with a much firmer talalay latex mattress from My Sleep Nation. The new one is 6 inches of 30-32 ILD over 6 inches of 40 ILD. The mattress is zoned to give firmer support under the hips. The cover is quilted cotton straight over the latex with no extra padding.

This mattress was great for about a week, then I began to notice that sinking feeling in the hips. I put a piece of 5/16 in plywood under my hips and lower back covered with a bath towel folded in quarters. This raised my hips and lower back about a half inch and I felt better-for another week. Now I wake up after about four hours to find myself sunk in too far. If I am on my back it is borderline okay. On my stomach, I am hammocked and my back hurts. On my side my torso and hips are sunken in enough that my shoulder takes too much pressure and hurts. I try moving off of my sleeping area if I want to be on my stomach or side, and feel more even support when I do. When I fall back asleep I end up back in the soft area again. I also usually have to move a cat to move towards the center of the bed, which annoys the cat :( He is getting old too! ( The picture is of our new kitten, the smallest Maine Coon ever. The one who sleeps next to me is an 18 year old Maine Coon who is getting cranky).

I am very frustrated at this point. I have a call into Sean at My Sleep Nation, but thought I would post here while I am waiting. I am really disappointed in latex so far. As I am only 180 lbs and am over 6 feet tall, I don't understand how I can be breaking down the latex so quickly. I am wondering if I should be looking at quality pocketed coil mattress with a Seven Comforts topper. I don't think coils soften and break down like latex, so perhaps they are a better choice for the support layer.

One other poster said they have had this experience with any type of foam mattress they have owned.....Lew

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Second latex mattress gone soft! 10 Apr 2013 01:57 #2

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Hi LEW,

I am very frustrated at this point. I have a call into Sean at My Sleep Nation, but thought I would post here while I am waiting. I am really disappointed in latex so far. As I am only 180 lbs and am over 6 feet tall, I don't understand how I can be breaking down the latex so quickly. I am wondering if I should be looking at quality pocketed coil mattress with a Seven Comforts topper. I don't think coils soften and break down like latex, so perhaps they are a better choice for the support layer.


I can certainly understand your frustrations and disappointment but I can also assure you that the latex you have tried isn't "breaking down" or getting soft to the degree you are perceiving. Latex just doesn't do this. After your first experience I thought it was possible that it was some kind of defective latex but with it also happening with your current mattress (which would work well for someone that was twice your weight for many years) it is clear to me that something else completely is happening that is somehow connected to your own physiology and perceptions.

I think part of this may be that the "feel" and response of latex is giving you the subjective perception that you are sinking in more than you really are which "translates" into subjective perceptions that are at odds with your expectations and what you are used to feeling on a mattress that is made of "stiffer" materials. If you were to put the layers on the floor and then test them for ILD according to any valid testing protocol you would find that the ILD hadn't changed nearly as much as you believe it has ... even though what you are feeling is very real to you.

Latex will soften much less than other foam materials and when one person's experiences are so different than all the testing that has been done on latex and is also at odds with the countless people who sleep on latex over a period of many years or decades ... then it's reasonable to think that either the way that latex feels and responds is somehow not comfortable or suitable for you or that you (and your body) just need to get used to a material that responds differently from what you are comfortable with over a much longer period of time. You would not be the first person by any means where latex was not their favorite material or had difficulty adapting to how it feels and performs but it certainly isn't because for some reason you alone are somehow softening the latex in your mattresses more than all the countless people who have slept on it for decades.

As you can see in my earlier reply to you in post #2 here (about latex softening) as well as post #4 here ... subjective "feelings" about how much you are sinking in are certainly valid as a "feeling" but they come from your mind and thoughts and beliefs not from your body. They are a "feeling about" something based on thinking about it rather than the thing or symptom itself. Sometimes what we actually experience is "translated" through beliefs that we think are true ... whether or not they actually are.

I know this isn't likely what you want to hear but you aren't the first person to "overthink" themselves into believing something that flies in the face of years of experience and seems to produce "evidence" that appears to confirm it. Your discomfort and pain of course are real and nobody wants to experience this for themselves or hear about it from someone else ... but the reason you are attributing it to ... the softening of the latex more than what would be considered "normal" ... just isn't what is happening and the actual cause behind your symptoms is somewhere else and a mystery waiting to be solved.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Second latex mattress gone soft! 10 Apr 2013 18:53 #3

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Phoenix, I am going to trust your judgement and experience on this. I did move around on the bed to compare un-slept on parts of the bed with the area where I sleep and my conclusions came from that comparison.

Sean from My Sleep Nation got back to me and suggested I rotate the mattress to even out the break in. He even offered to come by to help me do it. This got me thinking of Sleepy1's thread about fine tuning here Sleep-Ez after it broke in. She was having a similar problem and inadvertently solved it while swapping layers. I think her lesson for me is that the mattress breaks in fastest where we are heaviest and I either have to be more patient, or have to speed up the process where the mattress is unused or lightly used.

www.themattressunderground.com/mattress-forum/general-mattresses/11962-fine-tuning-our-sleepez-10000.html#15363

I haven't rotated the mattress yet, but I did move the cats and slept in the center last night and woke up with less back ache. Hey I paid for the mattress, so the cats get whatever is left over. :P I think I will spend some time on my knees on the bed today, not praying to the mattress gods, but softening the areas on the bed that don't get much weight on them.

Once I have this mattress evenly broken in, I still may consider the Seven Comforts topper. I managed to cancel my original order for use with the Snowmass after you suggested I wait on it. I am wondering if it would help my shoulders when side sleeping by giving some extra pressure relief. I also think it would act as protection for the mattress without having to go with a waterproof cover. I am guessing that it would take a while for any spill or accident to work its way through the topper. I imagine I would lose the sensual, close to the latex, feel that the mattress has, but my shoulders might complain less. Your thoughts?

I will add that Sean's service at My Sleep Nation was excellent. He is willing to do what it takes to make me happy and we spent time talking about a number of the mattresses he sells, different design advantages, etc.

Thanks for the response. Lew

BTW, could you change how my name is spelled. I didn't mean to make all caps when signing up, but can't figure out how to edit it.

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Second latex mattress gone soft! 10 Apr 2013 23:39 #4

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Hi Lew,

Once you have gone through the initial break in period there is very little and very gradual further change in the latex. In the initial 30 - 90 days however ... all the components in the mattress will "break in" and this includes the cover which will stretch and loosen and will also have an effect on how far you sink into the mattress as well.

The other layers on top (such as the mattress protector can also affect this).

Sometimes this initial break in period can seem like more than it really is if you are more sensitive to smaller differences in how evenly the layers compress but with the layering you have there is little doubt in my mind that your mattress will stay consistent in its firmness for many years with only very gradual softening (much less than other types of foam). As you mentioned ... using your knees or walking on the mattress can speed this up and even out the process more rapidly

It's also interesting that even some surface softening won't affect the support in the deeper parts of the layer.

I think the bottom line is that once your initial 30 - 90 days are over you are likely to be fine.

Once I have this mattress evenly broken in, I still may consider the Seven Comforts topper. I managed to cancel my original order for use with the Snowmass after you suggested I wait on it. I am wondering if it would help my shoulders when side sleeping by giving some extra pressure relief.?


Yes .. I think it would help with less risk to alignment in your pelvis area. It would "displace more" under the shoulders while it would "compress more" under the larger surface area of the hips. It is not as lively or as you say "sensual" as a latex layer but it is great in its own right.

The Cozypure Lanoodles topper would do even more of the same (displace under pointier parts of the body). It is more costly and thinner but also more "springy" and resilient (the pieces are larger and more like noodles than flat pieces) like you would expect from a latex layer. You can see a comparison or what is inside them in the video here .

I also think it would act as protection for the mattress without having to go with a waterproof cover. I am guessing that it would take a while for any spill or accident to work its way through the topper. I imagine I would lose the sensual, close to the latex, feel that the mattress has, but my shoulders might complain less. Your thoughts?


I don't know how either would do with an "accident" but I would think it wouldn't take that long for a spill to go through them once the liquid went through the cover. The Seven Comforts would probably hold more liquid inside it for longer though because it has more material inside so "soak it up" but it would also be more difficult to remove the "offending" liquid and washing them would be problematic. I personally use my mattress protector over them (I own both) because they would be difficult to clean or remove "liquid" from inside them.

You can see some of the mattress protector choices and the tradeoffs involved with each type in post #89 here but I personally would use a protector (not necessarily waterproof) rather than either topper for protection.

BTW, could you change how my name is spelled. I didn't mean to make all caps when signing up, but can't figure out how to edit it.


I changed it to "Lew". I can make it all small letter as well if you prefer :)

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Second latex mattress gone soft! 12 Apr 2013 22:09 #5

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Hi Phoenix,

I thought I would do an update on my mattress experience and add some pictures. This way you aren't counting on my description of what I am feeling. Yesterday afternoon I took some pictures of me lying on my side on the mattress after it had plenty of time to recover from a night of sleep. To me it looks like I am pretty well aligned with my 1/2 of plywood and towel under my hips and lower [/b]back. I have done some walking on the area under my upper legs, thinking that softening that area may help with alignment.

This morning I had my wife take two pictures, one of me on my back lying where I sleep. I could feel that I was "in the mattress" and when I moved to the side my body starting tilting. You can see this in the second picture, especially in my hips and stomach. I don't know why I didn't move my shoulders to the center of the bed as well, but it doesn't really matter. If I had moved towards the outside of the bed the tilt would probably have been greater, as I haven't walked or slept on that area.

As you can see, I sink into the mattress overnight, but it hasn't been bothering my back as much, possibly because the areas above and below my midsection are breaking in. This sinking in is similar to what I have experienced on memory foam, but not to the same degree. I am starting to get used to this feeling of being "in the mattress" and as long as I can maintain good alignment I think I will be happy with the mattress. If I have to I will even experiment with some more thin plywood under my hips and lumbar area. I did want you to actually see what was happening. I was a little hesitant to take more of your time on this issue, so please don't feel you have to reply.

Thanks for all your help. Lew

PS After looking at the picture of me on my side I realize I should have had my wife use some duct tape on my back. Funny how with age I am losing the once thick hair on my head and growing it everywhere else :lol:
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Last edit: by Lew.

Second latex mattress gone soft! 13 Apr 2013 01:40 #6

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Hi Lew,

In the first picture on your side your alignment actually looks quite good to me. If anything some softening under the shoulders may help a bit but this is very minor.

In the other two views it's difficult to tell much from the top down perspective of the pictures (instead of a side or lower perspective) but I don't see any obvious issues or the "tilting" you are describing although it's clear you are feeling something.

I can certainly relate to your comments about the hair. How are your ears?

Phoenix
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Second latex mattress gone soft! 13 Apr 2013 04:55 #7

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I meant to make it clear that I thought my side alignment looked good, though I did have to build up under the hips to get there. I agree about the shoulders. Maybe I will go for another walk on my mattress.

Too bad I don't have a horizontally striped shirt. It would make the tilt obvious. The tilt is there, but much more after 8 hours on the mattress. You can see it if you look at the shift in my belly. It is leaning to the viewer's right in the second picture.

As for my ears, what did you say? :P Memories of Emily Latella/Gilda Radner on SNL. "What's all this about presidential erections?" Lew

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Second latex mattress gone soft! 26 Apr 2013 16:11 #8

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I have an update on my personal mattress saga. The softening in my mattress has gotten worse and I now have almost an inch of plywood and cloth under my hips and lower back to avoid getting lower back pains. Sean from My Sleep Nation came by today to take a look and verified the problem. With the wood removed from the hip area he could really feel the tilt when he moved part way out of the compressed/softened area. He was scratching his head, like me, and will call Thera-Pedic to see what they think. Another case for local service.

I will post again when I have more news. Lew

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Second latex mattress gone soft! 26 Apr 2013 19:19 #9

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Hi LEW,

Thanks for the update.

Like Sean you have me scratching my head as well and I'll certainly be interested in hearing about what Therapedic says. In "theory" this shouldn't be happening of course and is unusual but of course that's no comfort to you because you aren't sleeping on a "theory".

I'm looking forward to your next report ... and you certainly have me curious.

Phoenix
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Second latex mattress gone soft! 26 Apr 2013 23:14 #10

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Yeah, Even with the extra support I feel sunken in by morning. When I move to the center of the bed I feel all that back support that it gave me initially, and that is without any plywood in the center. ??? Lew

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Last edit: by Lew.
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