Futon is the Japanese name for a blanket or a mattress. If you have ever seen a traditional Japanese household, you may have noticed that they have everything close to the floor. That is because they believe in staying close to the earth, according to ancient Eastern philosophy.
The Japanese futon mattress is also meant to be spread on the floor. And they are supposed to be extremely comfortable. Although you may think sleeping on the floor might be a bit unconventional, the futon mattress is worth considering because of its remarkable benefits.
Futon mattresses can improve your sleep quality, and like regular mattresses, they come in various thicknesses. Hence, if you want to invest in a futon, you do not have to worry about the size. And if you do not want to sleep on the floor, you can just use a futon instead of your regular mattresses on your bed.
Futons are great for those who are on a budget and cannot invest in a bed and a mattress at the same time. Moreover, if you have a small living space, you can easily roll up the mattress during the daytime and store it in a canvas storage bag. This is an ideal option if you move frequently because of the easy packing.
Are Japanese Futon Mattresses Comfortable?
Yes, Japanese futon mattresses are very comfortable. The modern futons are made from high-quality foam, providing you with all the comfort of a foam mattress.
Some mistakenly assume that a futon is the same as a Japanese Tatami mattress, which may be uncomfortable. The Tatami mattress is a soft mat made from straw that is supposed to go under the futon mattress. It provides the mattress with extra support and additional grip so it does not slip away. But you are not supposed to sleep on it directly.
The futon, on the other hand, gives you adequate back support because of the foam. Because they are close to the floor, there is no reason for the bed to sag, which remains firm for a long time. Futons have a way of making you feel grounded, and it also helps you calm down because of their design.
Benefits of Japanese Futons
If you are considering buying a futon for the first time, you are bound to have some considerations. However, looking at the pros will help you make up your mind.
1. Improves Back Pain
The futon stays close to the ground, and with the additional support of the tatami floor mat, it gives you excellent back support. If you have upper or lower back pain, the futon will help you find relief. The spine is aligned correctly, and there is hardly any sagging.
2. Proper Circulation
Sleeping close to the floor makes your body cooler and enhances blood circulation. In the same way, if you live in a cold country with underfloor heating, the heat will permeate through the mattress faster and give you a warm and cozy feeling.
The right temperature enhances blood circulation and gives you a good night’s sleep.
3. Relaxes Muscles
Futons help reduce fatigue by relaxing the muscles and increasing the oxygen supply to various body parts. It results in a better sleeping posture and provides adequate support by molding itself to your body shape.
It is excellent for those with joint problems or muscle spasms and can help resolve other sleep-related issues. You won’t wake up in the morning with a knot in your back or shoulders.
4. Reduces Anxiety
Futons are cozy and snug, and sleeping on one is akin to receiving a hug! Futons help in reducing stress and anxiety and can help fight insomnia. Sleeping closer to the ground makes you feel close to nature and also helps improve sleep quality.
You wake up in the morning with greater energy and a focused and calm mind, qualities that the Japanese cherish.
Points to Consider while Sleeping on a Japanese Futon
While the futon has several benefits, there are a few things you should be mindful of before you decide to purchase one. This will help you make a more informed decision and be a better buyer.
- Futons can be uncomfortable if you sleep on your side or your stomach. They are best for spine alignment, so only if you sleep mostly on your back are they going to be apt for you.
- Since futons are mostly spread on the floor, you may need to reconsider if you have trouble getting down due to pre-existing spine or joint issues. Or else you would have to place your futon on your bed to raise the level.
- Since futons are close to the ground, they would need more cleaning. If not cleaned properly, it could lead to allergies and infections. The tatami mattress below a futon attracts dust and mites because of its rough surface. If you already have respiratory issues, you should reconsider buying this mattress.
How to Use Futons in the Best Possible Way?
Sleeping on a futon is quite novel indeed, and you may feel a little out of place at first at the reduced elevation. To make the futons work for you, here are some tips you may try that will help you get the most out of it.
- Place the futon in a space that gets lots of sunshine. Not only will you get adequate doses of Vitamin D while using the futon, but sunlight is also a natural disinfectant that will keep your mattress clean and hygienic.
- The Japanese are comfortable doing all their work from the futon. It is a great way to enjoy a comfortable seating posture while working. All you have to do is get a low table to put your stuff on to work while sitting on the futon.
- If you have limited space, you can also use the futon for some exercise. They are great for yoga and stretching, and you can also use them for warm-ups before starting your workout.
It is natural to have some questions when you are trying something new for the first time. These are some commonly asked questions on futons that will help you decide if you buy one.
Are futons suitable for a hectic lifestyle?
Yes, futons are relatively lightweight than regular mattresses. Hence, if you move a lot for work or travel, then you can easily roll it up, pack it and get going. You don’t have to worry about leaving your mattress behind because of the bulk.
What are futons made of?
Modern futon mattresses are made of latex and memory foam. They are firm yet soft and provide adequate back support. They are available in varying thicknesses, so you can choose based on how much you are going to use the mattress and the wear and tear it may have.
Are futons less expensive than regular mattresses?
Yes, futons are less expensive than regular foam mattresses. But that does not mean they are not good enough. They are less expensive primarily because of the lower manufacturing cost. Still, a high-quality futon will give you excellent sleep quality regardless of the price.
Those who have never used futons before might be a little doubtful about using them at first. If you are that apprehensive, you may consider using a futon first for a spare room and then investing in one for your bedroom.
But even if you do not have that option, you will still reap quite a few benefits if you opt for a futon instead of a regular foam mattress. The futons are easy to store and carry. You will save space and money by using them and enjoy great sleep in the process.