About Me

"I am a family physician and public health specialist, and have lived and worked in Africa, Asia and North America. I am passionate about health-care development and am a co-founder and director of Healtheon Asia.

This is a collection of my thoughts, travels and things I can't otherwise classify."
- Dr Armid Azadeh

Sunday, 20 September 2009

Memory Foam: Friend or Fume?

My earliest encounters with “memory foam” was some 15 years ago when my aunt brought a memory foam pillow from the USA to South Africa, where I was living at the time. I remember being amazed at this apparent new technology that I heard had been developed by NASA for use in space. No one else in the country had such a pillow of what I believed to be cutting edge technology that would magically conform to the shape of your face. How cool is that? I don’t sleep comfortably unless I use my “memory foam” pillow.

Roll forward to today and the marvel of this product has worn off somewhat. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I am further chronologically challenged, have a small child now, and am studying public health, but when I opened up the mattress-in-a-box “memory foam” mattress, I excitedly purchased last week, I was suddenly overwhelmed by extremely noxious fumes that emanated from the strange foam that popped out of the box. Thinking to myself that this cannot be healthy for a small child and pregnant wife, I began looking closer at what I previously thought to be a technological wonder was exposing us to so intimately.