Memory Toppers Versus Egg-Crate Foam Pads Health Concerns

Mattress pad retailers and manufacturers say their toppers can cure a wide range of sleep problems (insomnia, back pain, joint aches, etc). No mattress foam pad can cure these problems but what they can do is help prevent bedsores, bring some pain relief and increase comfort during sleep. This, however, doesn’t apply to everyone as we’re all different and require sleeping surfaces suited to each and every one of us.

Topper Recommendations from Doctors

Many customers say in reviews that memory foam pads have helped them with apnea, fibromyalgia, insomnia as well as back and hip pain. There are no solid studies to back up these claims which is why doctors reserve judgment and many choose not to recommend memory foam mattress toppers as medical treatment. This doesn’t mean that they don’t work, it just means scientific proof is yet to be found that they do.

Egg crate foam toppers, on the other hand, have been known to receive more endorsement from doctors, especially since many hospitals use this type of pad for recently operated patients.

Some doctors even suggest that patients take the egg-crate mattress topper home and continue sleeping on it after being discharged from the hospital. The convoluted shape of these foam toppers can prevent and help heal skin ulcers, eliminate bedsores, reduce pressure points, allow air to flow, and prevent your body from becoming too hot during sleep (fever is notoriously dangerous for recently operated patients).

Low-quality egg crate pads, on the other hand, maybe dangerous as they are a source of toxic formaldehyde transmissions.

Back Support

These two types of mattress pads work differently in offering support and comfort. Support is one of the major criteria when buying the right sleeping surface.

  • Visco memory foam toppers provide proper support as long as they are the high-density type, are layered over a firm, flat mattress and is the heat-sensitive type.
  • Egg crate pads, unlike memory toppers, cannot, on their own, offer proper support since they are very light and thin at the dips. It all depends on the kind of mattress they are placed on. The foam pad will offer the necessary support and proper neck and spine alignment if placed on top of a firm mattress.

Pressure Relief

Health care specialists say that to be labeled as providing pressure relief, a mattress has to have a pressure of 32mmHg or lower, whereas pressure reduction performance is agreed to occur between 32mmHg and 50mmHg.

  • Good quality visco memory foam toppers like Tempur-Pedic overlays were shown to reduce average pressure to around 15 mmHg from nearly 30 mmHg.
  • We couldn’t find any numbers related to the pressure exerted by an egg crate mattress pad on the body, but considering its shape and doctor-endorsements, we believe that these toppers do relieve pressure points.

Allergy And Topper Choice

Just like there are no allergy-free mattresses, there are no regular allergy-free pads (except for the ones manufactured especially for people suffering from allergies). Since egg crate mattress pads are also made of foam, they are just as prone to host dust mites as memory foam toppers are, even though foam is generally not a source of food in itself.

The only way to keep dust mites out from your mattress topper, be it the memory foam or egg crate type, is to use dust-mite resistant encasings and covers.

Customer Opinions

When I laid on it, I couldn’t imagine anyone wanting memory foam. Once on it, I could barely move and turning over was a real challenge. I also could see how this could get very warm at night.

The mattress was firm and soft at the same time (as advertised), and we woke up with our backs feeling all springy and stretched out. We did notice that the temperature of the bed was warmer than with our old mattress, but taking off one layer of blanket solved that problem. We also could let the house get colder in the winter nights which might save energy, though to be honest, we didn’t track it.

My wife now sleeps through the entire night. It did not heal her back, it just provides great support to assist her in obtaining a good night’s sleep. The material forms/molds to the body like a parent holding an infant child.

I tried an egg crate mattress recently with my 9 mo. because she refluxes and has a hard time sleeping. I thought it might help her. It did!

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