How often should you change your sheets to preserve your health?

THE ESSENTIAL

  • It is advisable to change your sheets every week.
  • More than 3/4 of French people put clean sheets only every 15 days.

Dead cells, perspiration, toxins from sweat, secretions from the skin, mucous membranes and genitals, small drops of urine, which can give rise to fungus…that’s the unsavory minefield what can become of the bedding if the sheets, duvet covers and pillowcases are not changed at least once a week!

37%

This recommended rhythm is far from being followed by the French, who are only 37% to do it once a week. Worse, according to an Ifop poll1 out of 5 French people change their sheets only once a month.

However, it is a habit to adopt so as not to put our health at risk.

500 million cells

In fact, we lose 500 million skin cells per day which accumulate in the sheets between two washings and which attract the tiny dust mites which love to feed on these dead cells.

Laboratory tests have also revealed that swabs taken from pillowcases that have not been washed for a week harbor 17,000 times more bacteria colonies, que samples taken from a toilet seat.

Allergies, asthma…

All that lovely little ecosystem and dust mite droppings can trigger allergies, asthma, and cause flare-ups of eczema.

This is because these contain proteins which, if inhaled or come into contact with the skin, raise the level of antibodies which cause the body to produce histamine, which can cause the redness and swelling often associated with allergies and trigger coughing, sneezing and itchy eyes.

If you don’t have any allergies, you could develop one simply because you are constantly confronted with dust mites: we spend a third of our lives in bed.

Persistent germs

Washing your sheets every seven days maximum is all the more a trick to take if you tend to eat in your bed, if you do not sleep alone, if you sleep naked, if you sweat particularly (especially in summer!) … or if you or your partner has been sick.

In the latter case, it is advisable to immediately put the sheets in the washing machine to kill any lingering germs.

Indeed, most bacteria or viruses can survive on soft surfaces for a few minutes or a few hours.

This duration varies according to the microbe concerned: influenza viruses live only 15 minutes on the tissues, but certain stomach microbes can survive there for 4 hours.

Additional sideboard

And sleeping with our favorite animal does not help, on the contrary: the hair and dander of your dog or kitten become an additional buffet for dust mites.

To wash your bed linen effectively, washing at 60 or 70 degrees is recommended to get rid of germs and we must not forget the duvets to be washed twice a year and the pillows which must be machine-washed every two month.

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