A guide to living local in New Hampshire

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Whole Health:

A Good Night’s Sleep Lies in Healthy Bedding

By Tom Long / Fiddlehead Contributing Editor

Some of us live organically, eat pesticide-free foods, use toothpaste and cleaning products made with natural ingredients and do what we can to save the planet, or at least our part of it. But what about sleeping? Oh, yeah. That too.

Tucked In Organics bedding store in Amherst has you covered – literally and figuratively.

“Our mattresses are made of rubber and other natural ingredients. There is no polyurethane, formaldehyde or other chemicals,” Emily Aborn, the owner of the shop in the resurgent Salzburg Square said recently.

Aborn says a lot of her customers come in because they have allergies. “And that’s appropriate,” she said, “since I began the business three years ago because I have allergies.”

According to Aborn’s website, tuckedinorganics.com, “The average person spends a third of their life in bed. That amounts to about 56 hours a week and 25 years over a lifetime. We believe that no one should spend that time sleeping on dangerous chemicals that are found in conventional products utilizing flame retardants, synthetic foams, and fabrics.”

Aborn co-owns the store with her husband, Jason. She said conventional mattresses contain toxic chemicals such as flame retardants, polyurethane foams and petroleum byproducts that have been shown to be harmful to health. She says a toxin-free organic mattress and bedding provide the best, deepest sleep.

Tucked In sells a range of bedding products including mattresses, pillows, toppers, blankets, comforters and duvets - all organic - for babies, children and adults.

The mattresses are from four manufacturers and are dust mite-, mold- and mildew-resistant. They are made from natural ingredients, are said to be temperature-neutral and won’t collect moisture. They are also said to be free of chemical flame retardants, pesticides, bleaches, dyes and toxic finishes.

The mattresses are durable and sustainable. They are made of organic latex, or rubber from India and Malaysia, which is tapped directly from trees and is not to be confused with the synthetic rubber that is found in tires and gloves. It is said to be a soft, pressure-relieving and supportive material. Other natural materials include cotton that is made without pesticides and wool, which is known for its temperature-regulating properties that keep snoozers cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

Aborn said mattresses may be customized for comfort at the store, by adding or subtracting layers of latex, and may even be adjusted differently on two sides to accommodate two sleepers.

They are not inexpensive. The mattresses sell for from $1,300 to several thousand dollars. But what is a good night’s sleep worth?

“They’re not that pricey if you compare them to a Tempur-Pedic,” said Aborn. And she’s right.

Her mattresses are guaranteed for 20 years.

Aborn is not an advocate of the hard sell.

“Some people spend five minutes deciding and others spend three hours,” she said. “Some people come back several times. We encourage multiple visits.”

She also sells organic pillows made of cotton, wool, rubber, buckwheat and millet.

Back-to-school time is particularly busy at the shop as parents purchase mattresses or toppers to customize dormitory beds – feathering the new nests of their college-bound sons and daughters.

“Some customers come in to buy a mattress for their kids and then come back and get one for themselves,” Aborn said. “Some people are so happy they come back and give me a hug.”