It is important you know how to clean a mattress properly. Why? If you understood what can populate your mattress other than you and normal household dirt then you wouldn’t be asking why! Many people go years with the same mattress and never clean it once. Would they wear the same clothes year after year without cleaning or laundering them? You bet your life not!
So what should you protect your family from? What is it about a mattress that you must clean it regularly?
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What You Protect Your Family From
Here are just a few of the things that can contaminate your mattress, or that will likely be living on and inside it.
- Billions of dead skin cells
- Dust mites that feed of your skin cells
- Bacteria: oral bacteria, intestinal/fecal germs, genital bacteria: all these can include including Staphylococcus, Lactobacillus, and Streptococcus.
- Fungal spores
- Old food
- Dried detritus from over 20 gallons of sweat a year
- Old cosmetics
- Bodily fluids
- Pet dander, parasites and bacteria
- General house dust
Now say with honesty whether or not you should clean a mattress – any mattress in your home – on a regular basis?
Of course you should. Mattresses accumulate all sorts of contamination. Even if you have mattress protectors, dust sheets or pads on your mattress, most of these contaminants are so small that they can get through any fabric. Here is how to clean a mattress properly so you can keep yourself and your family safe from allergens and disease.
How to Clean a Mattress Properly
Here is how to clean a mattress properly. That means how to remove, not only stains and dirt, but also kill off these bacteria and parasites that love a warm mattress with you lying on it.
- Strip the Bed: First strip the bed. Remove all the covers you have on the mattress. These may need cleaned themselves, particularly any mattress protectors or other kinds of cover. A hot wash in your washing machine should do it. Then:
- Vacuum the Mattress: Give your mattress a thorough vacuum. This will remove the larger debris such as food crumbs. It will also sweep up much of the hair, skin cells and other dust that has accumulated over the weeks or months.
- Check for Stains: Check for individual stains and thoroughly clean the mattress using an appropriate spot cleaner. Most of these stains will be bodily fluids and occasional blood stains from scratched spots, piles or some other source. Urine stains from the occasional leak are also common, as are stains from other bedtime activities.Sometimes carpet spot cleaner works, but you could start with regular washing up liquid – dishwashing liquid. Lemon juice sometimes works, particularly when mixed with salt. The objective here is to remove individual areas of obvious staining before general mattress cleaning.
- General Shampoo: You can use a general carpet shampoo solution on a mattress. Mix up the solution to about a quarter of the recommended mix, then use that with a bath sponge to give the mattress a rub over. Don’t use a scrubbing brush – a bath sponge will clean the mattress without ruining the surface material. Leave it to dry then rub it over with clean water.
- Odor Removal: If your mattress still smells, then sprinkle it all over with bicarbonate of soda or baking soda. They are the same thing. The soda will absorb liquid from the mattress and help remove any odor.
- Give it a Good Airing: Finally, give your mattress a good airing. If possible, get it outside in the fresh air and sun. That will thoroughly dry the mattress out, and help remove any remaining smells. If you can’t do that, then open the bedroom windows.
How to Clean a Mattress and Prevent Future Contamination
That is fundamentally how to clean a mattress. There is nothing difficult about it. However, it is possible to reduce the possibility of getting the mattress stained or contaminated again. That involves using a mattress protector or cover. As referred to earlier, you can purchase mattress protectors that are fitted between the mattress and your sheet.
The mattress protector does just what is name suggests. It protects your mattress by absorbing any fluids and other contaminants by forming a barrier between the sheet and the mattress. Once you have cleaned your mattress, fit a mattress protector. This lies between your sheet and the mattress and protects the mattress from any contamination that gets through or underneath the sheet.
Keep Reading: How To Clean A Crib Mattress Properly and Safely »