Sheets & Blankets: How Often Should You Wash Them?

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A couple making their bedDo you really know who, or rather what, you’re sleeping with? According to Philip M. Tierno Jr., director of clinical microbiology and immunology at New York University’s Langone Medical Center, most people don’t know just what may be lying inside of their sheets and blankets.

Read: Allergy-Free Home: A Room-By-Room Guide

People’s bed linen washing habits greatly vary – some people wash theirs several times a week, while some, particularly younger adults, will leave their linens on their beds for much longer. But how much should you, ideally, wash them?

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Wash sheets and pillowcases once a week, and you’ll eliminate that debris that has accumulated in the bed for that week, Tierno says., adding that once-a-week washing schedule will make it safer to breath in that material.

Debris? What Debris?

Human skin cells become food for dust mites. That is one of the biggest problems associated with bedding. Mites accumulate, along with their feces. But there is also animal hair, dander, fungal mold, fungal spores, bodily secretions and bacteria. Also: dust, lint, fibers, particulates, insect parts, pollen, soil, sand and cosmetics.

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