History of Memory Foam

In the 1960s, NASA commissioned a group of scientists to develop memory foam to help astronauts reduce the pressure on their bodies caused by the G-forces acting on them during launch. The goal was to create a material that would support them and prevent excessive pressure points. These scientists created the first viscoelastic polyurethane foam. It would adapt to their bodies and become a whole-body absorber, so that any pressure could be removed from their bodies.

From the beginning, the memory foam was thoroughly tested. The first version broke down easily and only lasted a few years. It also caused unpleasant fumes in the spaceship, which ultimately made breathing dangerous. They also had no durability and disintegrated easily and with little use. Because of all these problems they were not used in the spacecraft. NASA quickly abandoned them and sold the technology to the Swedish company Fagerdala World Foam, which began experiments in the 1980s to develop a better memory foam for consumers.

In the 1960-1970s, latex foam mattresses lost their popularity due to problems with rubber tree plants in the Far East. In the 1990s, the latex mattress had reentered the market. The leading manufacturers of innerspring mattresses began to use Visco Elastic for their spring and spiral mattresses, reducing the pressure of the springs and spirals.

The new material was sensitive to temperature and relieved the pressure so that it could absorb body heat and distribute body weight evenly, adapting to body movements. BASF worked to overcome problems with the foam, which became too hard in cool temperatures and too soft in warm temperatures. It then became a certified product.

In the 1990s, the memory foam was introduced to the market. The pressure-relieving composite of the material in the mattress manufactured in Sweden was very well received. In 1992 the same product reached the North American market and was readily accepted. During this time, the market for mattresses made of shape memory foam averaged $8 billion in the United States and quickly gained popularity.

Due to the success of many foam manufacturers in the U.S., Europe, the Middle East, China and Canada, they developed and produced their own versions of viscoelastic memory foam that were eventually used in mattresses and pillows. Due to the development of memory foam, spring mattresses lost their popularity.

Memory foam can weigh between 2 and 8 pounds. The best product will be in the middle range of 3 to 6 pounds. Memory foam with a density of 2 pounds is usually imported from China and is considered to be below standard in terms of comfort and durability. The height of mattresses with shape memory foam is usually between 10 and 12 inches, which also contain other components such as basic orthopedic foam along with other support materials and quilting.

A height of 3-5 inches is the optimum amount, and benefits will decrease if less than this thickness is used. The countries that produce the best shape memory foam are Canada, Sweden and the United States. Other countries may use formaldehyde and other toxic products that can cause health damage and irritation. In addition, all memory foam products contain petroleum by-products.

Health therapists have found that the firm mattress is not the best mattress. A medium density mattress or mattress topper allows your body to cope with the heavy strain on your shoulders and hips. The natural curvature of the spine is supported during sleep and allows you to have a restful sleep without having to toss and turn.

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