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Does a high BMI mean no latex? And what does it mean, anyway? 13 Oct 2013 17:26 #1

My husband is a big man, close to 400 pounds, and due to a disabling congenital joint condition, lives with a tremendous amount of pain.

As we begin our search for a new mattress - which I'm really hoping helps alleviate some of his chronic pain and helps with his sleep quality - I have tentatively identified a natural latex mattress as my top choice. Memory foam is out because of its tendency to sleep hot. From what I've read here and elsewhere, latex seems like it would be a good choice for its resilient support and pressure-relieving qualities.

We happen to live in Acton, Massachusetts, and I was stunned to learn (here!) that there's a mattress manufacturer down the road - Spindle. I'd planned to go check them out. However, their web site says they don't make a mattress suitable for those with a BMI of over 31 ; my husband's is probably closer to 50.

So now I'm wondering - how do I figure out what to buy (I can't seem to find a lot of information, either in this forum or elsewhere, on choosing mattresses based on BMI - I'd think that would be important, but am I missing something?), and is latex out? Spindle's website says

BMI over 31. Unfortunately, we do not make one at this time. Give us a call or email and we'd be happy to give you some recommendations. Our favorite is the Archetype - Organic Innerspring from WJ Southard.

. WJ Southard is their parent company, so no surprise they recommend their product, but that doesn't sound anything like a mattress I want - do I have to have coils for someone with a high BMI?

Because he uses a wheelchair, going to a showroom and climbing up and down on a lot of mattresses is not going to happen. I'm trying to do as much research as I can before we get to the point of trying stuff out.

I'd be grateful for any suggestions!

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Does a high BMI mean no latex? And what does it mean, anyway? 13 Oct 2013 17:50 #2

Hi MelissaJane,

A high BMI presents special challenges and generally requires firmer materials in the support layers especially. This could be firmer latex or innersprings (the type of support component would be a personal preference and in the right design either could be suitable) or even a zoned construction. I believe that the reason for their suggestion is that they don't carry the firmest latex layers that wouldn't be necessary for most people. The same overall guidelines apply with higher weights though that PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) along with using high quality durable materials that will maintain their feel and performance for longer periods of time are the way to make the best choices. Heavier people in general will need firmer and thicker comfort layers and firmer support layers than those who are lighter and because no materials will last as long with much higher weights the quality and durability of the materials and components is even more important than normal. I wouldn't "rule out" any types of mattress and base your choices on your own personal testing.

As with any mattress purchase ... the best way to know which mattress is most suitable is with personal testing and the guidance of a manufacturer or retailer that has good experience with higher weights because there are too many variables, unknowns, and personal preferences involved to use "theory at a distance" as a way to make a mattress choice (see mattress firmness/comfort levels in post #2 here ).

There are also other options in the same area that are within reasonable driving distance that are listed in post #2 here and would be well worth talking to.

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Last edit: by phoenix.
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