Microbiologist’s Takes On Washing Bed Sheets

Philip Tierno, a microbiologist at the New York University said that humans spend one third of their entire lives in bed but the problem is that it can becomes a breeding ground for bacteria as well as fungus. Tierno added that our bed sheet should not be left unchanged for too long a time because microscopic organisms can thrive in the folds and wrinkles of these sheets which in turn can cause sickness.

In order to make sure that this does not happen, he recommended washing the bed sheets at least once every week.

Humans have the capacity to produce, annually, around 26 gallons of bodily sweat while in bed. Scientists said that when the outside temperature is humid and hot, the moisture can turn to what they term as “ideal fungal culture medium”.

A latest study delved more into the level of contamination that our beddings suffer from fungus. Researchers saw that a sample of pillows, both feather and synthetic, that are between 1.5 to 20 years old has a maximum of 16 different species of fungus.

The microbial life, bacteria and fungi, in your bed sheet are not just your own. Aside from the skin cells, sweat, anal excretions, vaginal excretions and sputum, there are also foreign microbes present in the bed such as lint, faeces and debris of dust mite, animal dander, finishing agents, pollen and soil among many others.

Tierno said that the level of these microbes become significant even before a week has passed. Unclean beddings can also affect human health and cause sneezing and sniffing because of the close proximity of the microbes in your nose and mouth that you can easily inhale them.

He added that even those without allergies can have allergic reaction due to these microbes.

One of the major reasons why sheets get dirty has very minimal relation to the sweat of a person or hygiene behaviour but because of gravity.

Gravity is the reason why various materials are into the bed sheet and the build-up can cause scratchy throat especially to people suffering from asthma or allergies.

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