After a long and tiresome day, you know that special something is waiting for you at home. Yes, that’s right, that special something has been calling for you since you left early that morning. It’s ready to snuggle with you and make all your problems go away. That special something is your comfortable bed.
As wonderful and exciting as it may be to get back into bed after a long day, you need to be sure it’s safe to do so. Did you know our bed sheets collect our dirt, sweat, dead skin cells, food crumbs, makeup, bodily fluids, bacteria, and bugs? When you take a shower and jump back in bed, it is almost as if the shower was unnecessary.
Now, we are not saying you have to wash your covers, sheets, or pillowcases every day. However, washing them weekly can make a difference in your health. Those differences can include improvement of sleep, limited bacteria build up, improved personal hygiene, and bedbug prevention.
The following information will give more insight on how this simple change can make a big difference:
- Improve Sleep
According to the Healthy People 2020 article, Sleep Health, “25% of adults in the U.S. report insufficient sleep at least 15 out every 30 days.” However, the “National Sleep Foundation showed that 73% of people sleep better on fresh sheets.” Therefore, if you do not want to be one of the 25% adults who lose sleep, then you better get some clean sheets.
- Limit Bacteria Build Up
Did you know 5 million different types of bacteria can grow on your week-old bed sheets, which is about 24,631 times more germs compared to a bathroom doorknob? Some of the common bacteria in our sheets include gram-negative rods, gram-positive rods, and bacilli.
- The gram-negative rods can cause pneumonia, bloodstream infections, and meningitis.
- The gram-positive rods can lead to antibiotic resistance;
- The bacilli can cause food poisoning and other infections.
The best way to treat your sheets is if you make sure you limit the bacteria build up by washing weekly and showering before laying in your bed.
- Impact on Personal Hygiene
Personal hygiene includes, but is not limited to, grooming, brushing teeth, washing hands after using the restroom or before and after meals, bathing daily, washing off makeup, shaving, changing into clean clothes, and smelling fresh.
It does not matter how well groomed or clean you are as an individual because we are surrounded by bacteria. However, clean bed sheets can limit bacteria build up on our skin.
- Prevent Bedbugs
Bedbugs are small parasites that feed on the blood of people. They cause itchiness and lack of sleep. Their bite marks can take up to 14 days to develop. However, even if they do not bite you they can live for several months in your bed sheets, clothes, and travel bags. When you sleep in sheets infested with bedbugs, you put others at risk of getting bedbugs. So please, sleep tight but don’t let the bedbugs bite!
In case you do have bed bugs, the good news is they do not usually pose a medical threat according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Avoid scratching the bitten area
- To treat bites apply antiseptic cream and lotions
- Spray your bed and sheets with insecticides spray
- Call a professional pest control company
So what to take away from this, you ask? Simple, wash your sheets weekly. There are many benefits to clean sheets, but I hope the ones provided in this article influence a change in your laundry days.
When prepping to wash your sheets make sure you grab your favorite detergent and keep the water temperature very hot, at least 131 degrees Fahrenheit.