Memory Foam Mattress Dangers

More and more people are finally learning about the dangers of all the toxic chemicals used in mattresses… and both traditional and newer “memory foam” are proving to be quite damaging.

While research has been slow to prove the link, you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure it out folks… just take a whiff of a new mattress after you’ve opened the plastic bag it’s in… that alone is enough to make most people instantly nauseous. Try sleeping on that every night!

You can get more details about the dangers by reading this article: “Can Your Mattress Kill You?”

Personally, I am in the process of replacing every bed in my home (and we have 8!) with all natural latex / rubber mattresses. So far we have replaced 4 of them and my wife and I have been sleeping on a king size one for over a year now and it is by far the best mattress we’ve ever had.

I encourage you to learn more about the dangers of traditional and memory foam and protect yourself and your family.


Since posting this video we have received several comments and emails from people asking which brand of natural mattress I purchased and recommend.

Well, I have actually bought from several different companies as I often do to test and see who has the best product and service. Here are the three companies I have purchased from:

Essentia: Natural Memory Foam Mattresses

Savvy Rest: Organic Mattresses

Natural Bed Store: Natural Latex Mattresses

If you’ve had experiences with these companies or others selling similar mattresses, please share your experience by commenting.

Filed Under: Sleep, Video
Written By:  Updated:
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Jesse Cannone, CFT, CPRS, MFT

Jesse is the co-founder and visionary CEO of The Healthy Back Institute®, the world-leading source of natural back pain solutions. His mission as a former back pain sufferer is to help others live pain free without surgery and pharmaceuticals.

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13 thoughts on “Memory Foam Mattress Dangers”

  1. Mick says:

    Any recommendations for the all natural latex / rubber mattresses? Suggested places to buy (hopefully online)?


  2. Cindy says:

    I bought mine from Lifekind. We LOVE the mattresses. They have excellent customer support to help you select the mattress for your needs and health issues. They are not high pressure–just honest, sincere, and helpful. The mattresses are expensive but excellent quality and well worth the price. I bought them during their spring sale a few years ago. Highly recommend.

  3. Emily says:

    What you do for a mattress if you have a allergy
    to latex. Or do people not have a allergy reaction
    to natural latex.

  4. Nina says:

    I have multiple bulging discs: cervical, thoracic, and lumbar. I have sciatica, SI joint damage and am held together with scar tissue and adhesions all in spasm trigger points in every square inch of my torso.
    I was hit by a runaway 18 wheeler going over 100 miles/hour as I sat stationary waiting for the light to turn green.

    The only mattress that has made a life and death difference was the DUXIANA mattress. It eliminates all pressure points and allows me to rest without any added pain. All previous mattresses created more pain and discomfort.

    The DUXIANA mattresses are expensive, but worth every penny. I bought a king for myself and a queen for my guest bedroom.

    Every singe guest who has some back pain issue and has slept on that mattress has told me that they slept like a baby and felt total pain relief and have not slept like that in ages. They all want to buy the mattress.

  5. Dolores Waggoner says:

    I have a temper-pedic mattress, I have had it for over 15 yrs. However lately I can’t sleep over an hr, or two at night without my body hurting & waking me up. I’m 84 yrs. young, in otherwise very good health. I know I need a new mattress, but you are you saying that I should not get a temper pedic mattress? if so what do you suggest I get? I am a health nut in every respect & I sure did not know that I had purchased a mattress that is dentrimental to my health. Please advise me, I have no one to help me. I would be eternally grateful for any input that you can give me, Sincerely DGW

  6. Will says:

    The thing I have against any foam sleep product is that they are hot and they stink. That in addition to the fact that they really don’t provide the proper support. Just watch the ads with a person lying on their back on the bed. Always the rear will sink and the legs will float up. When on the side, the same thing happens, forcing the back into an unnatural curve.

    I used to travel a lot and many of the hotels I stayed in had foam matresses. I usually ended up on the floor or getting another room because I felt like I was being gassed by the fumes. Yuk.

  7. Just updated the post above with 3 different companies that sell all-natural / organic mattresses.

  8. Sue says:

    Have you actually read the article “Can your mattress kill you”? There is so much factually incorrect information (eg. lymphoma = blood cancer!!) and it is generally such a poor article that I’m amazed you recommend it at all. I’m sorry to say that it has made me wonder about your credibility. And just in case you’re wondering, I do have a mattress with memory foam topping and I actually don’t like it, but your article and your reader’s testimonials, leave me stone cold!

  9. Kimberly says:

    If you have any problem with your memory foam mattress, then there are other many options to choose from. After all we all need a comfortable sleep at night. And a good quality mattress is must for that.

  10. chris says:

    I have like the other comments multiple disc blown, 4 fractures, L3,4,5, T1,2 with multiple bone spurs., stenos is, in many locations and of course arthritis. Ok saying all that I bought a MF mattress brand Chantilly, very nice bed very expensive not as bad as Temperpedic but like one of the comments mentioned your butt area goes deeper down then legs and lying on the side is impossible, like a knife in my ribs. But I do want to say, “when visiting hotels while traveling the beds absolutely destroy my back for days so out of the two evils I’ll suggest staying with the Memory Foam mattress even thro it is unnatural to the contour, I found flipping the mattress “which is impossible for me” more often and rotating more often seems to eliminate the problem a little. I don’t notice any strong smells but I’ve notice a little sinuous problem but not all the time. I don’t think I’m in much danger but could be wrong. AS FOR the Credibility of Jesse’s product there is no doubt in my mind that almost every stretch and bid of info is at the HIGHEST Quality on the net. If it wasn’t for the info I bought I wouldn’t still be going to work and would be on permanent disability. So back off a little, he’s making money like the rest of us right and mistakes sometimes happen. By the way everyone if you haven’t started using Infrared Heat Pad on the sour painful area’s start now. It works great. So don’t throw out your expensive beds to quick but don’t kill the messenger ok. Good day mate!! Jesse keep up the good work and keep helping us get better. By the way I can’t live without the stretches; even PT people are finding what I am doing amazing due to your videos on losing back pain. Cheers

  11. Metisangel says:

    What about those Choose your Number Beds? Are they any good for those of us with back pain probs?

  12. Deb Ball says:

    This is so scary. We bought a foam mattress from Living Spaces. It had a really bad smell but we aired it out and it didn’t seem that bad. We noticed the mattress was saggy so we turned it around. We took the cover off and it was covered in mold. BLACK SMELLY MOLD. After reading some of the dangers of this I contacted the company. The only thing they were willing to do is give us a refund. If you have a foam mattress, take the cover off. You might be as surprised as we were.

  13. Brandi says:

    This review is regarding a memory foam mattress that my husband and I ordered…Let me just start by saying that I was a healthy 32 year old woman (prior to introducing the memory foam mattress into my home). Within 2 days of this mattress being introduced into my bedroom, I have been to the Emergency Room and doctor visits due to dizziness, chest tightening, and shortness of breath (which turned out to be a diagnoses of asthma and bronco-spasms)which has been attributed to the OVERWHELMINGLY STRONG CHEMICAL SMELL that’s emitted from this mattress. My life has negatively changed, and I am now taking breathing medication daily. I REGRET THE DAY that I purchased this mattress, and allowed it into my home. We are now prisoners in our own home and sleeping downstairs on the living room couches in order to stay as far away from this dangerous mattress CHEMICAL SMELL.

    Story behind what happened: My husband and I were in the market for a new bed and wanted to invest in a nice, quality mattress set that would last us for a long time. So, when we went to the mattress retailer and tried out different mattresses in the store–we both agreed that this particular memory foam mattress was the most comfortable, and surprisingly met both of our physical preferences (Since I like softer mattresses and he likes firm). After we made the pricey “investment” purchase, we were SOOOOO excited to get this mattress delivered and looking forward to sleeping on the comfort that we’d felt on the store sample.

    However, it was delivered a few days later, and while it physically felt just as comfortable as it did in the store when we laid on it. .. there was a TERRIBLE CHEMICAL SMELL that was coming from the mattress. The chemical smell was overwhelmingly potent in the air in the bedroom and getting all over anything that touched the bed (such as the sheets, pillowcases, comforter, pajamas, and even our skin smelled like chemicals after laying on the bed. ) I could not sleep through the smell and woke up at around 3am unable to breathe well. I couldn’t go back to sleep in the room due to the overwhelming chemical smell, but I saw my husband sleeping so I didn’t disturb him and sat up in the living room watching TV for the rest of the morning until I left for work. When my husband woke up, he commented on the strong chemical smell in the bedroom and we just figured that by the time we got home from work that evening – it would be better. All day at work I could feel the heaviness of the mattress chemicals that I had breathed in at home in my chest/lungs when I breathed in and out. I tried to ignore it, but it was very uncomfortable.

    Later that evening when we returned home and went into the bedroom-the CHEMICAL SMELL WAS MUCH WORSE!!! We turned the fan on, and hoped by the time we were going to lay down a few hours later, it would have dissipated. When we went into the bedroom to go to sleep a few hours later- the chemical smell was still EXTREMELY STRONG! Since we were sleepy, we decided to lay down on our new mattress and foolishly figured that this must be normal, and would disappear and we would be ok. However, the same thing happened again: I could not sleep through the strong chemical smell and had been up since 3am.
    My husband also woke up complaining about the chemical smell, and we decided that we were going to leave all of the bedroom windows open during the freezing Chicago winter’s day. We knew that if ANYTHING would air out the STRONG chemical smell coming from the mattress–it would be a full day of nothing but strong Chicago windy winter’s air blowing in though the bedroom windows. (We also placed a fan in one of the windows to push the air out of the bedroom and left an air purifier running all day).
    That day at work, I was trying to ignore the heaviness that I was still feeling in my lungs/chest when I breathed in and out, but I was not feeling well and ended up leaving work early. When I came home, I stayed in the living room downstairs until my husband got home. I figured I would give the bedroom as long as possible to air out. When my husband arrived home later on that evening, and we went into the freezing cold bedroom- we were excited because we didn’t smell the chemical smell in the air (of course the windows had been opened all day and it was freezing in the bedroom.) We closed all of the windows, turned the heat back on in the bedroom, and went back downstairs to eat dinner and hang out in the living room until it was time for bed (feeling very excited and relieved because we thought our problem was solved). I told my husband that my dizziness, chest tightening, and breathing was getting worse, and I was really getting concerned. He said that the chemical smell should be gone and my condition should improve. When we went upstairs a couple of hours later, the CHEMICAL SMELL WAS BACK JUST AS STRONG AS BEFORE!! We smelled the actual mattress, and it was SOOO strong with that chemical smell that I could not stop coughing. I then started wheezing and my husband rushed me to the Emergency Room. The doctor examining me stated that air was barely getting through my passageways and that’s why I was wheezing and feeling so dizzy, and they gave me a breathing treatment and medication, kept me under observation for a few hours, and prescribed me medication to take. He also told me NOT TO SLEEP ON THE BED OR IN THAT ROOM UNTIL THE CHEMICALS ARE REMOVED. As a result, my husband and I are now sleeping on the couch and love seat downstairs until this mattress set gets out of this house. I have been taking medication daily to breathe, and this is NEGATIVELY AFFECTING MY HEALTH, and I AM SO AFRAID OF THE LONG TERM EFFECTS THAT THIS WILL HAVE ON ME.

    We went back to the store that we purchased this set from and explained everything to the supervisor. They were explaining that it’s normal for the mattress to have a smell for a little while, but it shouldn’t be THAT strong. When we went on the showroom floor, and smelled the sample of the memory foam mattress that we’d purchased, the CHEMICAL SMELL WAS THERE!!! (Now keep in mind that the mattress is laid on and tried out all day, everyday by shopping consumers, and since the mattress showroom is very airy and huge– THE CHEMICAL SMELL SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ON THE SAMPLE MATTRESS IF IT WAS ONLY ATTRIBUTED TO “new mattress smell”)
    After the store supervisor put her face to the mattress and smelled it, she then stated” well our other memory foam mattresses do not smell like that”, and had my husband and I smell another couple of memory foam mattresses –and although it was a faint chemical smell coming from those–it was NOTHING LIKE THE CHEMICAL SMELL COMING FROM the memory foam mattress that we’d purchased. At that point I KNEW that THE CHEMICAL SMELL WOULD NEVER GO AWAY ON OUR HOME MATTRESS, and I felt very sad about wasting our money on a terrible product. When shopping for mattresses, I never knew that one should SMELL it to test for chemical smells (as a matter of fact, the store sales person we’d originally worked with when we made the purchase had us laying on a thick pillow to test the various mattresses—and for sanitation purposes–we didn’t even think about putting our faces directly on the mattresses to smell them—but NOW I WILL NEVER PURCHASE A MATTRESS WITHOUT SMELLING IT FIRST) This experience has COMPLETELY TURNED ME AGAINST ALL MEMORY FOAM MATTRESSES!

    We are now making arrangements to get this mattress OUT OF THE HOUSE so that we can get a normal life back, and stop sleeping on the couches in the living room. In the meantime I have another doctor’s appointment and still taking medication related to breathing in the chemicals that come off of the mattress. I was breathing FINE and feeling GREAT before this mattress entered my household, and now I am miserable, taking medication, and sleeping on the couch.

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