Would you crawl into bed with a bunch of bugs? No? Well you do. Every single night. They are called dust mites, and they are everywhere. They thrive on dead skin, your dead skin. Yum. Yum. If you aren’t completely disgusted by now, check out our article on Dust Mites, to find out why they contribute to allergy problems.
In addition to these dust mites, their feces, and all that dead skin they are waiting to munch on, your bed also collects dust, lint, hairs, and other assorted debris that is floating around our homes.
Regular cleaning of your mattress, and the bed linen keeps these potential allergens in check. It also will increase the life span of your sleeping habitat.
The mattress should be flipped over a couple times per year. It is a great idea to co-ordinate it with changing your clocks to and from day light savings time, or on Independence Day and New Years Eve, if you don’t have much of a life outside your home.
The first time flip it over side for side, and the next time flip it over end for end (A note left between the mattress can remind you which way it is suppose to be flipped). This equalizes the wear of the mattress, and minimizes peaks and valleys. It is also a good plan on “flipping day” to vacuum the entire mattress and box spring. If you use a plastic mattress cover, wipe it down after vacuuming with a disinfectant.
Plastic covers are a must for young children who might have a periodic bed wetting accident. If you don’t have a cover when one of these accidents happens, check out the tip in our data base on cleaning urine from a mattress.
Although thought to be owned only by starving college students, there are those of us who have grown to love our futons. Like mattresses there are dozens of different firmness levels, and methods of construction depending on the manufacturer.
Typically there is a foam core, wrapped with cotton, in a heavy cotton fabric envelope. When cleaning, you should avoid getting a futon too wet, as it takes forever, or possibly longer, to dry completely. A moist futon is a bad thing, as warm, moist, dark areas tend to grown things (like fungus and mildew) that we don’t normally want to sleep with. Stains should be removed with as little water as possible, and usually blotting with a damp rag will remove most surface stains.
Futons should be rolled up every couple of months, and allowed to stay rolled up tight for an entire day, if possible. Turning them frequently will also lengthen their useful life significantly.