Difference Between Memory Foam and Orthopedic Foam

Humans always look for comfortable and beneficial mattresses. Choosing the correct mattress for your body is important for your health. Memory foam and orthopedic foam renowned for their health benefits are two big competitors of each other.

Memory foam would provide great comfort for your spine. The orthopedic foam is a brilliant choice for back issues. Memory foam is more popular than orthopedic foam as they provide multiple health benefits.

Memory Foam vs Orthopedic Foam                       

The main difference between memory foam and orthopedic foam is that memory foam uses synthetic materials for manufacturing. On the other hand, the orthopedic foam doesn’t have any specific material for its preparation or manufacturing. Both orthopedic foam and memory foam provide support to the body of humans but work differently. Memory foam mattresses are high priced as compared to orthopedic foam mattresses.

Memory Foam and Orthopedic Foam

In the 1960s, NASA brought the concept of memory foam. Memory foam is popular as it would not change shape permanently. After the pressure is applied, the memory foam would change its shape for some time, then it would return to its original shape. The mattress is a good choice for the pressure points, of the human body. Memory foam mattresses are flexible and soft.

An orthopedic mattress is for people with back or spinal cord issues. The orthopedic mattress use springs or high-density foam for balancing the back of the humans. An orthopedic mattress claims mild benefits for supporting the shoulder of the person. The orthopedic foam makes a hard mattress that would be difficult to move.                     

 Comparison Table Between Memory Foam and Orthopedic Foam

Parameters of ComparisonMemory FoamOrthopedic Foam                      
BenefitsFor spine and pressure points For back and spine problems
Shape changing featurePresent           Absent                                      
Human body heatUses human body heatNo claim for using human body heat
PriceExpensive than orthopedic foamLess expensive than memory foam
Material usedSynthetic materialNo fixed material (multiple material options)

What is Memory Foam?

Memory foam is for people who want a peaceful sleep with no disturbances. Sometimes, your partner’s sleep can affect or disturb your sleep routine. With the help of memory foam, you can sleep peacefully without getting affected by your partner’s body movement while sleeping. The concept of memory foam is to remove the stress from your body.

People would feel instant relief after using the memory foam. The lasting time of memory foam is 7 to 10 years. The higher density memory foam would provide equal support to your back (lower and upper) and spine. Always purchase top and premium quality memory foam for a long-lasting time. The memory foam components depend on the company or manufacturer.

Polyurethane is a synthetic component required for memory foam preparation. This mattress uses your body heat to take the shape of your body. This means you will feel comfortable and stress-free when you sleep on this type of mattress. Memory foam is not a good choice for the hot season as it produces heat.

People with dust allergies can use memory foam due to its hypoallergenic nature. The synthetic nature of memory foam may release some gas when purchased newly. The certified memory foam would not produce any harmful gases, but uncertified foams give no guarantee. The gas released by memory foam may cause symptoms, such as headaches and nausea.             

What is Orthopedic Foam?

The orthopedic foam supports your upper and lower back. The orthopedic foam is designed to provide support to the back and spine. It provides mild support to the shoulder and buttocks of the person. The foam is compact and difficult to move. People should never expect to change the location of orthopedic foam frequently.

People with orthopedic issues should purchase orthopedic foam mattresses. The orthopedic foam is not flexible as it is not a body-hugging mattress. The orthopedic foam is heavier than the memory foam. The orthopedic mattresses are better for elderly people or adults. People suffering from severe back pain would find orthopedic foam mattresses beneficial.

Orthopedic mattresses can go in the category of memory foam. Orthopedic mattresses help in supporting the body of the person to sleep well. People with disturbed sleeping windows would find orthopedic foam helpful for the body. Orthopedic foam is a good choice to avoid improper posture while sleeping.

The benefits of orthopedic foam are immense for correcting and improving your posture. It would maintain the uniform balance of your body. The orthopedic foam helps people with arthritis and joint problems. This type of mattress is a good choice for the summer months.

Main Differences Between Memory Foam and Orthopedic Foam

  1. Memory foam is a soft mattress, whereas orthopedic foam is a compact and firm mattress.      
  2. Memory foam provides comfort to the body. On the other hand, orthopedic foam supports the body.
  3. Memory foam may not come in the category of orthopedic foam. On the other hand, all the orthopedic foams can be considered memory foams.
  4. Memory foam has multiple benefits, whereas the benefits of orthopedic foam are limited to orthopedic issues.
  5. Memory foam restricts the disturbances created by your partner, whereas orthopedic foam has no such claims.


Memory and orthopedic foams are good options for promoting sound sleep and healthy life. Memory foam helps people sleep comfortably with no stress or tension. On the other hand, the purpose of orthopedic foam is to provide external support to reduce the pain in the body. People who love sleeping in soft mattresses would not like orthopedic foam mattresses.

Orthopedic foam mattresses should get purchased by people after a doctor’s recommendation. Memory foam mattresses are convenient for people with or without any health issues. Orthopedic foam mattresses are not for normal people as they are uncomfortable. Both memory foam and orthopedic foam mattresses have their pros and cons.

If you can spend a little more money for multiple benefits, then memory foam is for you. If you need a mattress for orthopedic issues, then orthopedic foam is the best for you.


  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1742706116305268
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0014305718309315
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