It can be easy to leave bed sheets on too long between washes – but with beds often providing a home for nasty germs, it’s more important than ever to keep them fresh.
A recent poll quizzing Brits on how often they wash their bedding by OTTY found many of us aren’t cleaning our duvet covers often enough.
An expert has said that covers and bottom sheets need to be cleaned once a week, as dust mites can live in them and can potentially cause health problems.
If you have been ill, it’s crucial to wash them more than once a week to get rid of any bacteria, and it should always be done on a hot wash.
On average, those surveyed admitted they waited about 12 days to strip the sheets and throw them in the wash.
Pyjamas and pillowcases should be cleaned once a week, with the latter needing to be done more often if you sleep on your stomach.
Many of us forget about washing pillows themselves, but it’s vital to keep them clean and they should be put in the washing machine every three months to ensure they’re hygenic.
Duvet covers and bottom sheets: Once a week. If you have been ill, wash them more often to get rid of any bacteria
Pillowcases: Once a week, or twice a week if you sleep on your stomach as pillows are close to your face and need to be kept clean
Duvets: Every two or three months, or a minimum of twice a year, to stop an infestation of bed mites
Pillows: Every three months to keep them hygienic
Mattress protector: Every two months, or more often if you have pets or allergies
Mattress: At least once a year to minimise dirt and grim
Bed blankets: Once a week or fortnightly
Pyjamas: Weekly, or every few days in summer months
The majority of people surveyed were washing their duvet covers, bottom sheets and pillowcases less frequently than the advice given.
However, on average, people were washing their mattresses, duvets and pillows more often than expected.
It found 64 per cent of people were potentially bringing dirt into their sleeping environment by not showering before bed, and 12 per cent said they don’t shower daily. Men were the worst offenders for both.
Michal Szlas, CEO and founder of OTTY, said: “In light of the ongoing pandemic, some may feel more at ease by purchasing new bedding to reduce the risk of bacteria surviving and being transferred to others, particularly if they experience symptoms, but proper laundry frequency and good personal hygiene should be sufficient,” as reported by The Sun.
“It’s also worth noting that the NHS have also advised that normal washing of clothes will reduce the risk of germs being transmitted, but that in certain situations clothes should be washed at higher than normal temperatures and with a bleach-based product to minimise the transmission risk as much as possible.”