Waterbed Advantages and Disadvantages

When you consider changing your traditional mattress with a water-filled one, the first question that comes to mind is how is it better? So, here is a list of the benefits of using a waterbed over your conventional foam mattress.

How are waterbeds good for you

The original concept of a waterbed was developed by Dr. Neil Arnott, a Scottish physician who primarily meant it for preventing bedsores in patients with movement impairment. Here are the pros of a modern waterbed:

Form-fitting for comfort: When you lie down, the mattress shapes itself around your body, providing excellent sleeping comfort. So, no need to toss and turn at night, trying to find a comfortable position to sleep.

Benefits for joints and muscles: Provides full contour support to your back and spine, reducing the pressure on your joints and muscles. So, sleeping in a waterbed may help with back pain, arthritis, and other joint issues.

Easy heating: Comes with an inbuilt heater for easy heating up of the water, to ensure a good night’s sleep, even during extreme cold. Also, the warmth helps relax your muscles as you sleep, improving blood circulation. This makes it beneficial for stiff or painful joints and muscles.

No dust absorbance: Don’t absorb dust, making them an excellent choice for those with dust allergies.

Easy to clean: As dust and dead skin cells can’t penetrate the surface, all you need to do is wipe the mattress surface with a vinyl cleaner to keep it shiny as new. Soft-side mattresses come with an easy to remove and wash the zippered cover.

Long-lasting: Lasts for 10 to 20 years while traditional mattresses need to be changed every 4-5 years.

No loss of shape: since it is filled with water, there is no chance of your mattress going out of shape with extended use. So, there is no need to flip or turn it over to keep it cozy.

Customizable to your preference: Some modern designs include two separate mattresses fit side-by-side in a single bed, allowing each sleeper to heat the water to their individual preference.

Are there any disadvantages

Heating costs: If you live in extremely cold climates, the heater may take up high amounts of energy to keep the water warm, increasing your total power consumption. It might help to turn the thermostat down when the heater is on.

Care and maintenance requirements: Waterbeds have some maintenance needs, such as regularly using a conditioner for the water and the vinyl outer cover, repairing and replacing the bladders in case of a leakage. So, draining the water from your mattress, repairing the damaged patches and then setting it up again may be somewhat inconvenient.

Special bedding and accessories: Your regular bed sheets and covers may not work with your new waterbed as a normal bed sheet may slide off the sides as you move in your sleep because the surface is much smoother than traditional mattresses and the frame may not always allow tucking the sheets in as in regular beds. So, you need to get whole new sets of bed linens when you switch to a waterbed. This problem is more pronounced with hard-side beds. However, soft-side waterbeds come in more conventional sizes to eliminate this problem.

Difficult to move around: If you get bored of your bedroom décor and want to move a few things here and there for a fresh look, your waterbed will need extra work. You need to disassemble the bed, drain the mattress, move the parts and then assemble it again in its new place. No pushing it around like a conventional bed.

Accidental leakage: Sometimes, your mattress may get punctured accidentally, with the perforation being too small to notice at first; but it will still gradually leak water, damaging your floor and anything else placed close enough.

Heavy weight: Although the weight is well-distributed, a waterbed is considered too heavy for new constructions and may exceed the weight bearing capacity of some older houses as well.

Restrictions to water-filled furniture: Some insurance policies and apartment leases do not allow any water furniture due to the added stress on the floor as well as the risk of damage from accidental leakage.

Sleeping in a waterbed is also not recommended for pregnant women and babies. Studies have shown women using water mattresses during pregnancy to have a slightly higher risk of miscarriage. At the same time, doctors never recommend waterbeds for babies as the form fitting feature may be harmful to their growth while also increasing the chances of suffocation.