How Often Should You Wash Your Bed Sheets?

Fun Fact: we spend more than a third of our lives in bed, leaving behind 56 hours a week of sweat, body oil and dead skin cells. But that place can quickly blossom into a festival of bacteria and fungus. If left for too long, the microscopic life within the wrinkles and folds of our bed sheets can even make us sick.

To avoid this, sheets need to be washed once a week. Our body naturally produces roughly 98 litres of sweat in bed every year! What’s more, when it’s hot and humid outside, this moisture becomes what scientists coined an “ideal fungal culture medium.”

In a recent study that assessed the level of fungal contamination in bedding, scientists found that a test sample of feather and synthetic pillows that were 1½ to 20 years old had as many as 16 species of fungus each… shocking, to say the very least!

So, you see, dust mites aren’t the only hidden surprises lurking in our sheets, and unfortunately, we’ve got only ourselves to blame for their presence. Every night we shed a million skin cells, accompanied by oil and sweat. And get this: it’s not just your own microbial life you’re sleeping with. In addition to the fungi and bacteria that come from your sweat, saliva, skin cells, and other bodily excretions, you also share your bed with foreign microbes. These include animal dander, pollen, soil, lint, dust mite debris and faeces, to name but a few.

All these bacteria become “significant” in as little as a week. And unclean bedding still exposes you to materials which can activate the sniffing and sneezing, since the microbes would be so close to your mouth and nose that you’re almost forced to breathe them in. And interestingly, even if you don’t have allergies, you can still have an allergic reaction.

Another reason your sheets get dirty quickly has little to do with your behavioural or sweat patterns – this issue is simply tied down to gravity, which is what brings all that material into your mattress. One to two weeks of this build-up is enough to leave anyone with a scratchy throat — especially those with significant allergies or asthma.

Not washing your bedding regularly, makes your bed all the more attractive for mites together a colony of other bacteria – but is less than pleasant for human occupants. Not washing your bedding regularly can contribute to increased suffering from health problems. Moreover, if you, your partner, or your child is unwell, make sure to wash your bedding daily or, at a bare minimum, change the pillowcase every day they’re unwell in bed.

Remember if you’d like to wash your bedding, be they sheets and pillow cases, bed spreads, blankets, quilts or quilt covers – Portughes Dry Cleaning can do the job for you. We can even pick them up for you, to avoid having to run yet another errand on your never-ending list! Contact us to schedule your pick-up today.

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