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Picking the right detention mattresses for your facility is all about the details. You might think that all of these mattresses are pretty much the same – but that’s simply not the case. For instance, choosing the right cover material is an important step. But there are other details that matter, as well.
In this post, we’d like to highlight the importance of built-in pillows. This is an optional feature, but one that we highly recommended for the reasons listed below.
#1 – Don’t Provide a Weapon
If you purchase mattresses without built-in pillows, you will likely need to provide separate pillows for your inmates. One of the issues with this setup is that offering a pillow to the inmates provides them with an item that can potentially be used as a weapon. Specifically, it’s possible to use a pillow as a tool to smother another individual.
By simply including the pillow as part of the design of the mattress, you avoid this problem altogether. The pillow cannot be separated from the mattress, and therefore you won’t be supplying inmates with something that could be used to harm others in the facility.
#2 – Reduce Opportunity for Self-Harm
One of the main responsibilities involved in running a detention facility is preventing self-harm attempts. To do so, it’s important to avoid providing inmates with anything that could be in such a manner.
Using traditional pillows that are separate from the mattress can be dangerous on this front. It may be possible to shred the fabric of the pillow, and those strands could be employed in a hanging attempt. No one wants that kind of situation in a detention facility, so this is another argument in favor of attached pillows.
It’s not only hanging attempts that are an issue with detached pillows. Those pillows have stuffing that inmates may be able to access, and that stuffing could be eaten as another form of self-harm. Even if the stuffing isn’t pulled out for this reason, that kind of damage would still require the pillow to be replaced, putting an extra strain on your budget.
#3 – It May Be Required
Depending on where your detention center is located, you may be required by law to provide a pillow to all inmates. Ordering mattresses with built-in pillows is the easiest way to satisfy this requirement. Rather than having to worry about whether or not each inmate has been provided with a pillow – and if that pillow is safe and sanitary – you’ll know each inmate has a pillow automatically.
#4 – Better Sleep Helps Everyone
The comfort of the inmates is likely not your top priority when making purchasing decisions, but considering this factor can help improve the overall operation of the facility. With regard to built-in pillows, opting for this feature can help inmate to get better sleep – and more sleep is something that can improve life for everyone.
Think about it this way – when inmates sleep better, they should be in a better overall mood and less likely to deal with various psychological issues. As a result, the whole detention center should be a safer and more comfortable place to be. This benefits inmates as well as the correctional officers who have to work with them each day.
#5 – Improved Sanitation
It’s hard to keep a detention center clean. With so many people living in a confined space, there is always the potential for the spread of disease and other health issues. This is particularly true when not all of the residents of the facility are going to be too worried about hygiene or helping to keep the place clean.
Built-in pillows are an excellent way to streamline the sanitation process. Instead of an extra item to collect bacteria, dust, and more, you’ll have it all in one easy-to-clean item. The entire mattress, including the pillow, can simply be wiped down with an appropriate cleaner.
#6 – Save Costs in the Cleaning Process
Not only can you create a healthier environment by eliminating separate pillows, but you can also save time and money in the cleaning process. With a traditional pillow, there is extra work that is needed for cleaning – and it still might not come as clean as a built-in pillow in the end. By going with a built-in design, you gain the advantage of cleaning the facility faster, which means a lower financial investment.
#7 – Eliminate a Hiding Place
One of the main challenges that face correctional officers is confirming that none of the inmates are hiding any contraband or weapons. To make this job a little easier, it’s best to eliminate potential hiding places – taking away hiding places means fewer spots to search and less opportunity for a mistake.
A standard pillow makes for a natural hiding place for a weapon or some form of contraband. That’s not the case with a mattress that has a built-in pillow. With this design, the officer can simply lift up the mattress as part of a search, not having to worry about the pillow separately.
It should be clear by now that buying a mattress with a built-in pillow is the way to go. There are so many benefits associated with this design and no notable drawbacks to speak of. With that said, you still need to pick the right mattress with a built-in pillow to make sure you get all the benefits you desire.
At MTJ American, our design includes two notable features that allow us to stand apart from the competition.
For more information on our detention center mattresses with built-in pillows, please contact us right away for assistance.