The simple answer is once a week is enough. But for the hygiene of sheets and linen it is good not to eat on bed, and not to lay down with your sweat or clothes you wear to go out. Changing the sheets should not be underestimated. Sleeping in a fresh, clean bed means not running the risk of any physical discomfort (itching, for example) and sleeping better. But how often do we have to change sheets? And is there a difference between summer and winter?
WHEN TO CHANGE THE SHEETS
The bed can easily become a jumble of bacteria and fungi which, in the long run, can cause health problems. Especially, if the sheets are not changed frequently. In fact, colonies of microorganisms are hidden in the folds of the bed linen which can become harmful. Our body produces sweat (about 26 liters per year), hair, secretions of various kinds, expectorations due to coughing or sneezing, which end up on the sheets. Even more, not to mention the dust coming from the external environment and the hair of the animals that live with us. These little micro particles are stored right where you rest. All this, favors the presence of fungi which, when inhaled, can represent a problem for those suffering. For example, like allergies or asthma.
For this reason, sheets should be changed for every 7 days! Especially in spring or summer, when it’s hotter and you sweat a lot. Furthermore, during the summer, by wearing light underwear, the skin is more in contact with the sheets and consequently they get more dirty. When winter comes, however, the sheets can be changed even after ten days, although the optimum is always the classic week. Sleeping in a bed with fresh, clean sheets is not only pleasant but good for your health.
WHEN TO CHANGE THE LINEN
Other bedding should also be changed and washed on a timely basis. The pillowcases should be changed twice a week, since you rest your face on them: in fact, many mushrooms nestle on them. Blankets, mattress covers and bedspreads should be washed every two or three months at the latest. The mattress and pillows should be vacuumed and aired every two months. Obviously, if you change the sheets and bed linen, it is natural that the pajamas you sleep in should also be changed once a week, to prevent the germs that have lurked on them from transferring onto the clean sheets, frustrating the effort.
WHAT HAPPENS IF THE SHEETS ARE NOT CHANGED?
As already mentioned, between the folds of the sheets there can be colonies of fungi, bacteria and germs of all kinds, generated by our body secretions and by everything that also comes from the external environment, as well as from food residues, which we often consume.
When you come into direct contact with all these microorganisms, it is impossible not to inhale them and this can cause sore throats, colds, asthma and many other pathologies in particularly allergic subjects. Sleeping on dirty pillowcases also favors the appearance of pimples, acne and blackheads, since the face rests on the pillows, a jumble of impurities, such as, for example, make-up residues. Particularly small mites nest between the sheets insects that cause or aggravate asthma and increase allergies, such as rhinitis. Mites proliferate in humid environments, such as sheets, and to keep them away, in addition to washing bed linen often, it is also necessary to obtain anti-allergic anti-mite products, which are essential if allergy sufferers live in the house.
HOW TO WASH DIRTY SHEETS?
Washing the sheets is a not indifferent, but absolutely necessary task. Especially if you want to sleep in a bed that is as clean, fresh and fragrant as possible. Many hours are spent between the sheets every night and there are many residues that the body releases on them. The sheets require careful washing and certainly also linked to the type of fabric they are made of. Those of white cotton should be washed at 60 degrees while the colored ones prefer 40 degrees, to eliminate mites and bacteria.
The detergent to be used can be neutral or even specific for white or colored garments. You can also add fabric softener to the special tray, to make the sheets even more fragrant. If the bed linen is very dirty, you can also add a teaspoon of baking soda, which sanitizes and cleans thoroughly. The detergent can also be combined with a few tablespoons of vinegar, which is a powerful antibacterial.
After washing, the sheets would always hang out in the open air. But not in direct sun which tends to yellow them. Sheets should never be stored damp, as this will cause the mites to come back. In addition, when summer arrives, blankets, sheets and duvets must be placed in vacuum bags. And then closed in a dark bags to keep all parasites away. It is good that every now and then the bed is left uncovered. It will favor the removal of the mites, which, not finding the right humidity to survive, dehydrate and die.
HOW TO CARRY OUT THE FIRST WASH OF THE SHEETS
If the sheets you put on the bed are new, this must first be freed from the folds of the box. Otherwise during washing in the washing machine, if the color “runs out”, unpleasant shades are created on the folds. The first washing in the washing machine must be done “cold”, with a temperature not exceeding 30 degrees. This is to avoid that the fabrics shrink or that the excessive heat of the water can fix some residues of glues or primers on the fabrics. The detergent must be delicate and you can add a cup of baking soda or 4 tablespoons of vinegar , without using fabric softener. The baking soda makes the sheets soft and the vinegar sets the colors well. The final rinses should always be two. Once washed, the sheets should be allowed to air dry, avoiding the use of the dryer.
HOW TO KEEP THE SHEETS CLEAN
It is not enough just to change the sheets to enjoy a fresh and clean bed, you also need to take care of your personal hygiene, to avoid that when you lie down in bed, what may have been washed just before gets dirty immediately. Therefore, to keep the sheets clean, you only need a few, simple precautions to be followed every day. First of all, it is good to take a shower, before going to bed, after being out of the house for a long time, in contact with dust and atmospheric agents. Once you had a shower, you should change your pajamas as well. Especially if you have been wearing them for more than a week, especially if it is summer.
The bed should never be a place to consume food! Because the residues of this could attract all sorts of germs and bacteria. In addition to those that already normally nest in the sheets. After a shower, the hair should be dried well! Because when the hair is wet, they contribute to raising the humidity of the bed. This condition encourages the appearance of fungi and bacteria. You should never lay on the bed with the clothes you have been wearing all day! The reason is pretty simply, because these clothes are dirty, dusty and loaded with microbes.
Only by observing these simple rules you will have cleaner sheets and a bed that is truly a healthy environment. It will help you to spend the night or in any case you want to rest. In the morning, as soon as you wake up, it is a good habit to not cover your bed. Nowadays, many people make their bed once they get up from the bed. But it actually create the perfect environment for mites because of the humid and sweat. Indeed, one other important rule is to open the windows to ventilate the room well. Even for few minutes, before leaving the house keep your windows open.