Facts About Memory Foam

In the last several years, memory foam has become extremely popular in everything from mattresses and pillows to slippers and office chairs. Before purchasing an item made out of memory foam, it is important to understand it benefits and possible drawbacks, as well as what to look for and avoid.


Memory foam was developed by NASA scientists in 1966 to provide shock absorption for astronauts during liftoff and landing.


Memory foam is a non-toxic, visco-elastic foam material that is made out of a combination of polyurethane foam and various chemicals.


Some people notice a chemical smell from memory foam. It is typically not harmful, and should dissipate within a few weeks.

Possible Health Issues

People with sensitivities or allergies to some chemicals or polyurethane may find that a memory-foam mattress, pillow or other object creates health problems for them.

Grading Scale

Memory foam is graded by weight (pounds per square foot), Indentation Load Deflection (ILD), resiliency and its degree of tensility.

Cheap Imitations

There are cheap imitations of memory foam on the market that do not stand up over time. The only way to ensure that your memory-foam products are of good quality is if they are made in the United States or come directly from the Tempur-Pedic company.

About the Author

Kristina Copeland has been working as a freelance writer since 1999, as well as having held full-time positions as a writer and editor for various companies. She is passionate about her family, reading and writing, and spending time at the outdoors, especially the beach. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a Master of Science degree in information studies and library science.