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Archive for June 5th, 2008

Where did Memory Foam originate?

Thursday, June 5th, 2008

Memory foam was originally developed by NASA to decrease the very high pressure caused by the extreme g-force occurring during the take-off of the space shuttle. It was never used in the space program but was subsequently used medically, for example by patients who used to lie in bed on hard or very firm mattresses for long periods of time without regularly moving such as being bed-bound after a paralyzing stroke. The pressure over some of their bony regions decreased or stopped the blood flow to the region causing horrific pressure sores and/or gangrene. Memory foam mattresses helped hugely to decrease such events.

Memory foam was initially too expensive for general use, but in recent years it has become cheaper to produce and is now widely available. Its most common domestic uses are mattresses, pillows and mattress toppers (also known as mattress pads). It still has medical uses, such as wheelchair seat cushions, hospital bed pillows and padding for persons suffering long-term pain or postural problems; for example, a memory foam cervical pillow may alleviate chronic neck pain. Its heat-retaining properties may help some pain sufferers who find the added warmth helps to decrease the pain.

A memory foam mattress is usually denser than an ordinary foam mattress. This makes it more supportive but also heavier. It is often seen as a good compromise between the comfort of a soft mattress and the supportiveness of a firm one. Memory foam mattresses often sell for more money than traditional mattresses but they last longer.

wikipedia.com

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