The cold weather and wintry conditions can leave you craving your duvet and relishing the prospect of snuggling up in bed. However your bed may not be quite the sanctuary you believe and might instead be home to a variety of allergy-causing nasties. You may feel confident that you bed is clean and hygienic because you wash and change your pillow casing and duvet cover regularly, but if you are neglecting the mattress then you are in for a nasty shock.
When did you last vacuum your mattress?
You probably vacuum the home once a week, if not more, and as part of this regular chore most of us vacuum the sofa and other upholstery items. However, many of us forget about the mattress!
The mattress can be a haven for dust mites and needs to be cleaned regularly – and this means vacuuming at least once a week. Research from the Sleep Council states that we excrete around half a pint of moisture every night and this equates to 1lb of shed shin annually, providing a constant food source for the dust mite infestations. It is thought that constant exposure to dust mites and their droppings can make you allergic.
Vacuuming the mattress regularly will help to combat a dust mite problem and can help to extend the lifespan of your mattress. If you have vacuumed your mattress once a week from new, then it may well last 10 years before it needs to replaced - which is double the general recommendation that you should replace mattresses every 5 years.
Many leading vacuum manufacturers have developed tools that can help you to thoroughly clean the mattress while ensuring you can take care of this necessary chore as quickly and easily as possible. The Dyson mattress tool is one example and this fits a wide selection of Dyson models. If you are prone to allergies or already a sufferer than you may also want to consider investing in a anti-allergy mattress cover.
It’s not just the mattress…
House dust mites can also be an issue in pillows and duvets. It is estimated that the average bed has over 10,000 house dust mites living in it which results in there being over two million droppings, according to AllergyUK.org. In a recent newspaper article, the director of AllergyUK warns that the average pillow doubles its weight in three years, thanks to remains of dust mites that build up inside it! Your duvet can house dust mites in exactly the same way.
It is essential that you wash both your pillows and duvet every few months to remove dust mites as well as other bacteria and fungal spores. Your bed isn’t the only haven for allergy causing bacteria, so keep your eyes peeled for future articles.