Modern mattresses require very little care, but benefit greatly when you do. Once upon a time, most mattresses were made with half the padding on each side. It was necessary to frequently turn them over to equalize wear on each side. If you follow the simple diagram above, you will see how to do it without any heavy lifting. Never sharply fold any mattress when transporting.
State of the art mattresses today, both innerspring and synthetic foams, have thick body-conforming padding on one side and little to none on the other. They do not need to be turned. However, they do benefit from monthly rotation during the first year break in period. Turning them will be counter productive because the underside is not designed to be slept on.
A protected and clean mattress will be usable for much longer than a neglected one. The best possible, and most comfortable protection from human and pet stains is provided by an absorbent quilted pad. The thicker, the better. You can use a foam or feather pad between the quilted mattress protector and the mattress to provide greater softness, but always use a quilted top protector. This not only prevents stains, but starves the dust mites that feed on your sloughed off skin cells.
Non-porous plastic or rubber covers may be needed in special situation for sanitary purposes, but they are to be avoided if not needed. Air passing through your mattress helps keep you cool in a warm bedroom.
All the care in the world will be pointless if you do not buy a good mattress in the first place. I recently got two platform mattresses from Charles P. Rogers, America’s oldest mattress maker. They have been around almost twice as long as I have, and Herbert Hoover was president when I was born!
These mattresses are made with an extremely large number of pocketed wire coils held in place by structural foams. They are then padded and upholstered in various pre-compressed materials that are a perfect compromise of durability and comfort. Too hard and the mattress will last longer, but you won’t: Too soft and your spine will sag as quickly as the mattress. It is an art, not a science, and Rogers has figured it out very well in the last 155 years.
Marshall, the Old Bed Guy.