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THE CONSUMER'S GUIDE TO ADJUSTABLE BEDS

SLEEP: THE SECRET OF SUCCESS

More than ever before, the truth is being told. A sound night's sleep is not a luxury - it is a medical necessity. The negative physiological effects of sleep deficit are being increasingly documented, shedding new light on the meaning of sufficient sleep. Did you know that in addition to recharging cognitive and memory-related faculties, adequate sleep regulates the immune and digestive systems, corrects chemical imbalances, controls weight, normalizes blood pressure and blood sugar levels, and maintains stress hormone levels? Conversely, lack of sleep plays a blameworthy role in automobile accidents, elevated body fat levels, underachievement in school and on the job, and depression. It is no wonder that family physicians everywhere are urging their patients to obtain an adequate quantity and quality of sleep.

Ensuring depth of sleep necessitates creating as comfortable a sleep environment as possible. Did you ever consider the fact that our bodies are not flat? That is why traditional flat mattresses fail to offer adequate support, even causing pressure and discomfort as they force your body to turn to new positions all night long. There you have it: one of the reasons people simply don't sleep well at night!

But hope is here for the eyelid-heavy. In comes the adjustable bed, lending Sleep new definition. An adjustable bed allows you to elevate and lower your head, torso, legs, or feet or any combination thereof simultaneously. Designed to relieve pressure and to provide proper spinal alignment, true relaxation is suddenly obtainable.

Use of the remote control enables you to adjust the head and foot sections of the bed to find the precise customized position for your ideal comfort level. Choose the "zero gravity" position to relieve pressure from your spine, neck, and shoulders; improve breathing and provide relief from the effects of asthma; enhance blood circulation and alleviate edema of the legs or feet.

Adjustable beds have been hailed as providing great relief for sufferers of a wide variety of medical conditions such as acid reflux, heartburn, asthma, edema, lower back pain, spinal stenosis, neck and shoulder pain, sleep apnea, hiatel hernia, poor blood circulation, and arthritis. Check with your doctor. The purchase of an adjustable bed may just qualify as a medical deduction.

Did you know that an adjustable bed has been designed specifically for acid reflux sufferers? The Sleep-Ezz Adjustable Bed for Acid Reflux Sufferers by Med-Lift elevates the torso up to 8 degrees while keeping the rest of the body straight. This relieves pressure on the stomach and keeps the food down where it belongs. In fact, this bed can also be used in reverse for the relief of edema of the legs or feet . Elevating the lower portion of the bed decreases the swelling caused by excess fluids.

An adjustable bed spells the marked difference between a mediocre sleep experience and superior slumber. People affected by sleep disorders may find the heightened sleep situation it creates most conducive to the quality sleep that has eluded them in the past. For those who like to read, work, watch TV, eat, phone, plan, or talk from the comfort of their beds during waking hours, an adjustable bed provides just the right physical environment with no slouching at all!

ADJUSTABLE BED INS & OUTS: CHOOSING THE BED OF YOUR DREAMS

An adjustable bed consists of two parts, the base and the mattress. Its two-point articulation system allows the bed to fold in two places, thereby dividing the mattress into 3 areas to create the head, middle, and foot sections. As the mattress bends with the position of the base, it stands to reason that a mattress not built specifically for this purpose should not be used with an adjustable bed base. While some adjustable beds are sold together with an accessory mattress, others are not. At times you are given the option of purchasing a mattress along with the bed base.

The Long and Short Of It

Adjustable beds and mattresses come in Twin, Twin Long, Full, Full Long, Queen, Split Queen, King, Dual King, California King, and Dual California King. Note that not every model of every brand will always come in the full range of sizes. A Split Queen or Dual King is comprised of 2 beds and measures the same in total as its undivided counterpart. When the 2 beds are pushed together side-by-side, it looks like 1 bed. It typically comes with 2 remote controls which afford independent positioning of each half of the bed. While dimensions may vary among companies, standard sizes are in accordance with the chart below:

Bed Size Dimensions
Twin 38" x 74"
Twin XL (or Twin Long) 38" x 80"
Full 54" x 74"
Full XL (or Full Long) 54" x 80"
Queen 60" x 80"
Split Queen 30" x 80" x 2
King 76" x 80"
Dual King 38" x 80" x 2
California King 72" x 84"
Dual California King 36" x 84" x 2

Be sure to check the precise measurements of every particular model and brand to account for any variations. Some Twins, for example, may measure 75" or 76" long, while some XL (Long) models may measure 84" in length.

Mattresses

The adjustable bed you wish to purchase may come as a package deal which includes a specific accompanying mattress. On the other hand, you may be given the option of selecting one of various adjustable bed mattresses offered as an accessory item. (You do not have to avail yourself of this option if you prefer to purchase separately an adjustable bed mattress different from the choice(s) offered. )

At times only the adjustable bed base is for sale, with no mattress accessorized at all. In this case you will need to purchase your own. In any event, you would do well to familiarize yourself with the various adjustable bed mattress types described below.

Innerspring Coil mattresses are designed to absorb motion. The hundreds of steel wire springs within each mattress move as your body moves yet provide equal support that cushions you. Thus they serve to limit motion even as they support the body. These durable mattresses are ideal for the movers and the shakers, the tossers and the turners among you! They come in Pillow Top, Tight Top or Reversible Pillow Top/Tight Top versions. ( Pillow Top mattresses are mattresses with an extra layer of cushioning sewn onto the top. Depending on the height of the cushion, pillow top mattresses may require deep pocket sheets.)

Latex mattresses are one of the most durable mattress types there are. 100% Pure Natural Latex (as opposed to Synthetic Latex) is inherently hypoallergenic, anti-microbial, and dust mite resistant, making this type of material ideal for allergy sufferers. Independent studies have proven that a natural latex mattress is three times more resistant to dustmites than non-latex mattresses. They cost the most but prove economical in the long run, as they require replacing the least often.

Memory Foam mattresses are made from a visco-elastic polyurethane based foam. The material's open cells allow air to pass through, giving it a breathable quality. These remarkable mattresses have the unique ability to conform to the contours of the human body by reacting to the sleeper's body heat and weight. It is interesting to note that memory foam was originally developed for the NASA space program to protect astronauts from the harmful effects of G-forces.

Memory Foam is characterized by unique pressure reducing properties. Those suffering from back pain, arthritis, and poor circulation will find this type of mattress particularly helpful. Cushioning the body in supreme comfort, it creates an ideal sleep environment. Memory Foam mattresses topped with a Bamboo, Aloe Vera, or Coolmax cover will keep the sleep setting at a comfortably cool level for more heat-sensitive individuals. The Aloe Vera will provide a uniquely moisturizing sleep environment, as well.

Lumbar Support mattresses are specially designed to offer maximum support and promote proper alignment. Those suffering from back pain will find them particularly helpful.

Anti-Allergy mattresses are made with a top layer which can be removed periodically for washing. This prevents contamination and maintains a healthy, allergen-free sleep environment for the particularly sensitive.

The Good News About Adjustable Beds

It used to be that adjustable beds looked exactly like what you saw in the hospital. With the increasing demand for adjustable beds in the home, designs of current models are aesthetically pleasing. By concealing the motor and flex points, your bed's adjustability is kept under wraps - literally and figuratively.

As long as the bed is the same size, your current headboard or footboard will fit, though you may need to purchase headboard or footboard brackets to accommodate it. So, too, it can generally be used with an existing bed frame by purchasing leg extensions.

Some models offer height-adjustable legs and headboard brackets. These may be included with the bed base or offered as optional accessories for purchase.

Your current bedding will also fit your new adjustable bed, provided that it is the same size as your previous bed. An exception to this is found in the case of a pillow top mattress, which may require deep pocket sheets depending on the height of the cushion.


Features & Frills

Advancements in the realm of adjustable beds are constantly in progress , with ever-increasing efficiency and comfort the ultimate goal. Empower yourself with knowledge of what's available on the market so that you can make a well-informed choice.

Adjustable beds come with wired or wireless remote control. Dual King and Split Queen models come with dual remote controls to enable independent positioning of each half of the bed. Can't find the remote control? A remote control locator will solve your problem in stressless fashion.

Some adjustable beds come with back-lit raised buttons and LED screen for convenience. Many boast programmable memory positioning which will assist you in recalling your favorite position selections. Models connected to a timer will allow you to set the bed to reposition at a designated time. This may prove convenient at night while reading, for example, when the bed automatically returns to level position at your pre-selected "bedtime".

The Hi-Lo feature raises and lowers the bed more than ever before. Perfect for those requiring home healthcare or assisted living, or for independent individuals who simply need some help getting in and out of bed. Spring for the Flex-A-Bed Adjustable Bed With Hi-Lo Feature.

Independent head and foot adjustment provides customized comfort of each portion of the bed. Single-button automatic leveling returns all 3 sections to a level position simultaneously.

For added safety, look for a unit featuring guard rails. (The half-length rails offered with some models may be all you need.) Free-Fall Design is a convenient safety feature allowing the head and foot sections to lower only by gravity

The motor of an adjustable bed can be either DC or AC and is characterized by differing noise levels. A sound-dampening case will muffle the noise. A Whisper Quiet DC Motor ensures noise free transitions. An AC PowerLift Motor has a higher lifting capacity, in some cases with a strength of up to 600 lbs. Some models offer you the option to select the motor of your choice. A Battery Back-Up will provide emergency power in case of an electricity outage.

The Wallhugger feature maintains a consistent distance between the bed and your wall and nightstand even after repositioning. This is achieved by the bed sliding backwards at the same time the head is elevated. Check out the ProMotion Wallhugger Adjustable Bed with its excellent wallhugger capabilities.

A Massage feature will add a luxurious component to your adjustable bed. Some come with a wave massage, or a 10-speed variable back and leg massage with varying degrees of intensity. Programmable massage with timer will allow you to set the duration in advance, while those such as the Prodigy Advanced Technology Adjustable Bed offer massage with wake and audio alarms, waking you to a gentle massage at the designated time.

Optional Leg Extensions or Bed Risers will increase the height of the bed base off the floor. This may be required in certain cases where an adjustable bed base is to be used with an existing frame. Removable Legs are necessary for use of the bed on the floor, or for use in slatted bed frames.

Optional Headboard/Footboard Brackets may be offered for use of the adjustable bed with existing headboards and footboards.

A Snore Feature will eliminate or alleviate disruptive snoring by gently repositioning the snoring sleeper.

iPhone and iPod Touch Applications accompany some advanced models.

Last But Not Least

An adjustable bed is an investment. For those who can afford to do so, the best is to pay the additional fee required for complete delivery with set-up. Should this not prove feasible, a model which comes basically pre-assembled and requires simple wheel attachment and remote control programming would be a welcome purchase. Adjustable beds weigh anywhere from 200 to 340 lbs, so make sure to have a minimum of two strong able- bodied folks to help you carry your adjustable bed from the delivery truck to your bedroom.

Adjustable beds use standard, grounded, household outlets and are U.L. approved. They require no special wiring, the electricity flowing to the motors is fully insulated, and they are safe to use. Some employ a 100% polarized modular electrical system, which guarantees that no stray wires will pull loose. Very little electric power is required to raise or lower an adjustable bed, so the cost of electricity is minimal.

Take care to check the conditions of the warranty. The length and coverage of the warranties on various brands and models can vary widely. Bed parts, for example, can be covered for anywhere from 90 days to 20 years! Major companies offer a pro-rated 10 year mattress guarantee plus a lifetime parts guarantee. Look for the length and coverage of mechanical repairs, as well as for replacement of mattress, motor, and remote control. Beyond the first year, you may have to pay for a service call.