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AMERICA'S MATTRESS CRISES

Most of us never consider what will happen to our mattress once we stop using it. Itís a valid concern as old mattresses are increasingly ending up in landfills every day. To paint the picture, the amount of discard mattresses is equivalent to 40 Empire State Buildings stacked on top of one another being thrown out every day. And this is only in the United States.

Traditional mattresses are made from springs, foam, wood, and other materials that make proper recycling difficult. For this reason, rarely does anyone take the time to recycle their mattress even though mattress recycling centers exist all around the country.

Mattress Recycling Council, a non-profit organization created by the International Sleep Products Association (ISPA), is doing its best to educate American consumers about how to recycle mattresses. Around 85% of mattresses can be recycled. They can be disassembled, and the components can be used for secondary purposes. For instance, mattress foam can be reused for animal bedding, the metal springs can be repurposed for manufacturing, the wood can be burned for fuel, and the cotton can be recycled for industrial textiles.

While such programs are creative solutions, the problem is that many of these program only exists in a select few states so the rest of the countryís mattresses continue to end up in the landfills.

Foam-based mattresses are mostly petroleum-based. The typical mattress is made from a foam composed of polyurethane, a type of plastic. Recycling polyurethane is a process that gradually reduces the quality of the material. Many recycling centers wonít even accept polyurethane because recycling it takes up valuable resources that, in some cases, donít yield sufficient benefit.

Wool bedding is one popular solution to the problem. The benefits of sleeping on a wool mattress are numerous.

For starters, owning an all-natural wool mattress means that at the end of its life, it can be recycled. The material is easily biodegradable and the conditions for its return to nature are minimal. The only thing it needs is moisture, air, and warm temperature.

Sustainability is another benefit to sleeping on wool. Wool doesnít need to be get chemically treated with bleach or toxic fire retardants. Itís proven to be naturally fire-resistant without the use of chemicals.

Wool has been proven to be a beautiful solution to the growing problem of how to recycle foam-based mattresses. You can make the choice right now to live in a healthier and happier environment that doesnít harm the environment. Consider buying a wool mattress.

Written by: Shepherdís Dream


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