Before You Sleep Tonight: Quick Tips for a Cleaner, Healthier Mattress

A mattress is an important part of our sleep regimen and can affect our waking hours if we overlook caring for it. If neglected, mattresses can become dirty and lumpy and can make sleeping uncomfortable. Cleaning your mattress doesn’t have to be a hassle; learn how to extend the life of your mattress and improve your sleep quality by cleaning your mattress.

Covered in the article:

Quick mattress maintenance tips

A routine quick mattress maintenance can help prevent smell from building up and stave away allergies. There are a few things that you can do that are easy to do regularly to maintain the life of your mattress.

Quick mattress maintenance tips

DIY mattress spray

Another good mattress maintenance tip is to make your own mattress spray. Mix 1 cup of distilled water and 1 cup of vinegar with around 20 drops of your preferred essential oil scent and spray it on your mattress at least once a week. Vinegar can help to disinfect and deodorize your mattress.

Importance of a clean mattress

Over time, our sweat, oils, skin, and hair rub off onto our bedding. They accumulate and seep through to our mattresses even if you use bedding and a mattress cover if not changed and maintained regularly.

The oils, dirt, and dead skin that build up on mattresses will eventually attract dust mites and can trigger allergies and even asthma.

Dust mites feed on dead skin that is on your mattress and bedding material. When they eat, they leave behind droppings all over your mattress and the sheets you are using. An old mattress may contain millions of these tiny bugs that are feasting on your dead skin, and they can cause or worsen allergies and asthma.

Other bugs can find their way to your mattress, such as bed bugs. These pests like to hide in the seams of your mattress, and they are directly on you while you sleep. You can pick bed bugs from a movie theater, airplane, bus, or other populated areas. They get on your clothes and follow you to bed. This is why it is always good to go to bed clean and in fresh pajamas.

The sweat, oil, and saliva that rub off on the bed while we sleep can also attract other unwanted organisms. Over time, a mattress can accumulate mold, yeast, and bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus or E. coli.

While sleeping with pets may seem cute and cuddly at night, dust mites and other pests can also follow your sweet fur baby into bed. Pets have dander and are at risk of fleas and ticks being transferred to the bed. Make sure your pet has been recently cleaned, bathed, and brushed if you plan on having them in your bed.

Step-by-step guide for deep-cleaning your mattress at home

A mattress should be deep cleaned every 6–12 months to promote longevity. On top of the regular maintenance, like cleaning your sheets, there are deep cleaning routines that should be done for your mattress as well. When you wash your sheets, check out your mattress and see if there is any damage.

  1. Vacuum. Using an upholstery attachment, vacuum the entire surface of your mattress. This is to remove any build-up of dirt, dead skin, debris, and dust mites that accumulate on the mattress.
  2. Spot clean. If there are any stains on the mattress, take a cleaning solution and a clean cloth and blot the stained area with cold water. Repeat this process as necessary, but do not soak the mattress. A urine enzyme cleaner may be needed if there are urine stains on the mattress.
  3. Baking soda. Sprinkle baking soda on your mattress to absorb any moisture and smells that may be hiding in the fabric of the mattress.
  4. Vacuum again. After the baking soda has sat on your mattress for a few hours, vacuum the mattress again to remove the baking soda.
  5. Rotate. As you lay on your mattress, it is normal for it to start sagging in regularly used areas. Rotate the mattress by 180° or flip it completely over to prevent sagging.
  6. Repeat. As necessary, you can repeat the spot cleaning, vacuuming, and rotation to perfect the cleaning of the mattress.

Looking after your mattress

Not everyone thinks of the mattress when they talk about deep cleaning. When you change your sheets every week, you should inspect your mattress for damage and stains that need to be cleaned. A deep clean should occur around every 6 months to keep your mattress in top shape.

Mattress protectors can help do just that — protect your mattress. They can help prevent mold, mildew, and dirt from getting on your mattress and extend their life. Mattress toppers are different and may provide more comfort but less protection than an actual mattress protector.

Most mattresses last around 7–10 years before they need to be replaced. Depending on the type of mattress you have, the length may vary a little. For example, latex mattresses last around 7–8 years, spring mattresses 5–6 years, and hybrids 6–7 years.

If your mattress has tears and rips, you should look into getting a new mattress. Mattresses with stains and smells that, despite cleaning, won’t come out are another good indicator that it may be time to replace your mattress. Also, if you have sagging in the mattress and wake up stiff, in pain, or unable to sleep, you should consider replacing your mattress.

In conclusion, your mattress is an important part of your sleep hygiene and needs to be maintained regularly. Weekly cleaning, as well as deep cleaning every 6 months, should be done to preserve the life of the mattress. A dirty mattress can also lead to other health complications, such as allergies and asthma.


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