Changing the bed sheets is one of the house chores than many people dread and put off. In fact, a 2020 survey by Hammonds Furniture revealed a third of Brits only wash their bedding once a year. To decrease the chances of developing health conditions, sleep experts advise people to change their sheets far more often than that.
And if you like to snuggle up with your pooch at night, it’s even more important to get into a regular routine. The team at Bed Kingdom have outlined how many times a week dog owners should wash their sheets if they sleep with their pets – and the number may come as a surprise to you.
How often should I wash my bed sheets?
It is recommended that you should wash and change your bed sheets once a week or at most, every other week.
Once a week is a healthy balance between washing sheets regularly enough to avoid the build-up of bacteria, germs and dirt, without being so often that it becomes hard to fit into your routine.
But if your pet sleeps in your bed, it’s advised that you wash your sheets two or three times a week.
Dogs, cats and other pets carry even more bacteria than humans and shed fur.
With all of this excess hair, skin cells and bacteria on your sheets, it’s best to wash your bed more frequently.
If you have asthma or allergies, it’s beneficial to your comfort and health if bedding is changed more frequently too.
The same goes for if you are ill – it is best to wash away any germs and viruses as often as you can.
What could happen if I don’t wash my sheets regularly?
As humans, we lose a lot of fluid and bodily oils each night while we sweat in our sleep, not to mention the shedding of thousands of dead skin cells every hour.
These oils and skin cells rub off onto our sheets, causing your sheets to become smelly and covered in bacteria and fungi.
Laying in this environment can cause health conditions such as yeast infection on the skin.
Though the real worry is dust mites which feed on dead skin cells.
Although they are not visible to the naked eye, they multiply at rapid rates without being detected.
Fortunately, most people will not be affected by dust mites, but those with allergies and asthma will experience symptoms.
A sleep expert from Bed Kingdom said: “Washing bedding can be seen as a hassle and a chore for many of us.
“As with any chore, it can be easy to procrastinate and leave it to the last minute, but the potential effects on your health are a great reason to dedicate the time.
“Sticking to a schedule of stripping the bed in the morning is a useful way to keep on top of your washing as you will be rewarded with clean sheets the next time you get into bed.
“If you can dry your sheets in the sunlight, this will save you money on tumble dryer costs as well as killing germs further.
“Those who choose to sleep with pets may consider limiting this to save money on energy bills from more frequent washing.”