When you’re a kid, what is more fun than sleeping in a bunk bed? Although some children may be a little afraid of heights, most will scramble up to the top as quickly as a sibling or parent will allow. Bunk beds are not only a great way to save space in small bedrooms, but they can be quickly converted into forts and ships with just a touch of the imagination.
That means you not only want a comfortable mattress that ensures a good night’s sleep for your little ones during their growing years, you’ll also want a mattress that can withstand regular play and childhood energy.
Tips To Consider Before Buying A Bunk Bed Mattress
Bunk Bed Safety First
Bunk bed designs and frames can present some important considerations when shopping for mattresses. Not only do you want to ensure that the firmness and comfort levels help children sleep soundly during their growing years, but you’ll want to make sure they are safe. Keep these things in mind.
Bunk Bed Mattress Length and Width Measurements
For the most part, standard twin- and full-sized mattresses fit most bunk bed designs. However, it pays to take precise measurements just to make sure that the mattress fits snugly within the frame. Failure to do so could result in a child’s arms or legs becoming caught in between the mattress and the frame causing discomfort and potential injury.
Bunk Bed Mattress Height Measurements
As companies have improved mattresses over the years, many are now thicker, ranging in size from about seven inches to 12 inches in height. When you’re selecting a twin mattress for the top bunk, however, you’ll want to make sure it’s about six or seven inches tall. Thicker mattresses may put a child in danger of falling over the guardrail. To be safe, you’ll want a good four to five inches of guardrail to extend over the top of the mattress and topper, if you use one. On the other hand, you don’t want an ultra-thin mattress either because you could have too large of a gap between the bottom of the guardrail and the mattress.
Bunk Bed Mattress Flipping Challenges
Since the top bunk sits fairly high, you will want to give more significant consideration to the weight of your mattresses. Not only will a heavier mattress be more difficult to position high in the first place
Bunk Bed Mattress Covers and Protectors
You may want to add a cover or protector to your bunk bed mattresses, which can make cleaning and disinfect much easier. Sheets can also block allergens like dust mites, add a layer of comfort, or prolong the life of the mattress. Plastic, quilted, stitched, allergen or tufted covers are all available on the market. Consider these aspects and then select a mattress cover that will address these concerns most thoroughly.
Types of Mattresses For Bunk Beds
Bunk bed mattresses typically come in twin, double or a combination of both sizes, depending on the design of the bunk beds themselves. When purchasing a mattress for your bunk bed, you will most likely be choosing from these standard mattress types:
Polystyrene Foam Mattress
Most mattresses that come with inexpensive bunk beds are polystyrene foam. Typically medium in firmness, these mattresses are fairly easy to clean, position and flip. However, durability is often an issue, and they tend to break down over time, requiring more frequent replacement.
These coil-based mattresses make up the majority of mattresses on the market today. The higher the number of coils, the more firm the mattress will be. These mattresses are typically heavier than foam mattresses, but they have been used in bunk beds for years. The lifespan of a coil mattress lasts around ten years.
Pocket Sprung Bunk Mattress
These high-quality mattresses tend to eliminate the sagging problem that might occur in a standard double foam mattress. If more than one child sleeps in a double bed, they can end up rolling toward the middle, making the indentation larger and more saggy toward the center of the mattress. Pocket springs feature individually wrapped coils, and an additional comfort layer offers extra softness.
Memory Foam Mattress
These mattresses take the shape of a child’s body, making them a comfortable choice for most. However, you’ll want to ensure that the mattress is not too soft, especially for small children, as they present a suffocation risk. These mattresses also have a reputation for being fairly durable but can also get hot with body warmth.
Natural Latex Foam Mattress
Many latex mattresses contain foam derived from a rubber tree, which means they often have many fewer chemicals and related off-gassing smells. They may also be ideal for children with allergies and sensitivities to odors.
Do You Need Bunk Bed Bunkie Board?
Don’t forget to add a piece of wood under each mattress, otherwise known as a bunkie board. This addition will help provide extra support for the mattress without needing a box spring. Bunkie boards will also prolong the mattress’ life.