The Benefits of Medical Mattresses

Lying still, in one position, for a long time is not good for the body. It can create pressure on vulnerable points, such as the heel, the coccyx at the base of the spine and the elbows. In these areas, the bone is close to the surface and can press against the skin, preventing blood flow and this can cause pressure ulcers, commonly known as bed sores.  

This is not normally a problem if you are fit and well and have full mobility. In this case, you would not normally spend extended periods in bed, and if you do, you will naturally turn over and reposition yourself as you sleep. However, if you are confined to bed for long periods as a result of chronic illness, injury or following surgery, or if you are less mobile as a result of your age or a disability, then you may need a specialist medical mattress to prevent or treat pressure ulcers.

What is a medical mattress?

A specialist medical mattress is a mattress that is created specifically to support people who are at risk from pressure ulcers or bed sores. Medical mattresses are designed to relieve pressure on the vulnerable points, and they come in two types: preventative medical mattresses, which are used to reduce the risk of sores, and treatment medical mattresses, which are used to help sores to heal, while avoiding any further damage.

How do medical mattresses work?

Medical mattresses work by redistributing the weight of the user, so that there is less pressure on the bony protrusions where the skin more vulnerable. This can be achieved in a number of ways, depending on the level of risk and the prevalence of existing sores.

  • Foam medical mattresses – these use a type of specialist foam that varies in density between different areas. This allows the vulnerable points to sink into the surface where the foam is softer, while the body weight is supported at other points by firmer foam. This type of medical mattress is best for preventative use.
  • Static air medical mattresses – these use a similar principle to the foam variety, but in this design, the different levels of support are created using air pockets. Once again, these are best suited to preventative use.
  • Powered air medical mattresses – these use a pump to inflate and deflate pockets of air on the mattress surface. This mimics the normal body movements and prevents the user becoming set in the same position and creating a constant pressure on the vulnerable points. These can be used for both prevention and treatment of pressure ulcers in a wide range of clinical and care home settings.

Choosing the right medical mattress

When it comes to selecting the best specialist medical mattress for an individual, you need to consider the level of risk as well as their current condition. Patients can be at low risk, medium risk or high risk depending on their level of mobility and how long they are in bed each day. The higher the risk, or the more extensive the existing damage, the more targeted the support needs to be.

For example, the Redwood range includes three models of the Verituss medical mattress. These cover the full spectrum of support, from the Verituss VMS100 range, ideal for low risk patients, to the Verituss VMS300 range, which has industry leading performance designed for patients at high or very high risk.

Expert advice on medical mattresses

If you need any assistance in selecting the most appropriate specialist medical mattresses, the expert team at Redwood are always on hand to help. Redwood has over 40 years experience in creating the highest quality medical mattresses and can advise you on the ideal option. Alongside our Verituss range, Redwood can also create bespoke medical mattresses to your exact specifications, or work with your team to develop specifications based on your individual requirements.

For more information on specialist medical mattresses and how Redwood can assist you, please get in touch today by calling 01695 553 830, emailing or completing the contact form on our website.