British furniture company Hammonds surveyed 2,000 residents to find out how often they wash their bedsheets. The results are pretty shocking. Only 30% (1 in 3) of survey participants wash the sheets more than once a year.
Is this a problem? It could be. Keep reading to learn what may be lingering in dirty sheets, and how often you should wash them to make your bed a healthier place to sleep.
3. The Dirty Truth of Dirty Sheets
An article by the Sleep Foundation lists a handful of the substances and creatures that could be living in your sheets if you only wash them every now and then. Sweat, dead skin cells, natural body oils, and dirt can all collect in your sheets from the people who sleep on them. Plus, the same substances can seep into your sheets from any pets in your home.
Pets aren’t the only creatures that might sleep in your bed sheets. The Sleep Foundation warns that bed linens also collect dust mites, along with their fecal matter and carcasses.
2. Health Risks of Dirty Bedsheets
According to WebMD, just a few of the conditions you could develop from sleeping in dirty sheets include asthma, allergies and eczema that could keep you awake with itchy, irritated skin.
Dust mites and their droppings are considered allergens. The reason your sheets fill with dust mites, says WebMD, is because they love eating the more than 500 million dead skin cells your body sheds per day.
Is that enough to convince you to wash your sheets regularly? If you’re wondering how often that should be, it depends on whether only humans live with you.Related: 4 Health Risks of Not Washing the Bedsheets
1. How Often Should You Wash Bedsheets?
The Sleep Foundation recommends washing your sheets in hot water once a week if you don’t have pets, or every three to four days if you do. If people in your home have allergies, consider changing the bedding more often than that.
Don’t forget to include your pillowcases. WebMD states “lab tests found that swabs from pillowcases unwashed for a week harbored 17,000 times more colonies of bacteria than samples taken from a toilet seat.”
Does cleaning the sheets often feel like a hassle? Have at least one to two extra sets of clean sheets on hand to make the task easier.Related: Here’s Why You Should Clean Your Washing Machine Regularly