Wake up to what you’re sleep­ing with

Central and North Burnett Times - - HOME - — Vanessa Brown, news.com.au

WE SPEND about a third of our day be­tween the sheets.

Over time, our bed be­comes a haven for bac­te­ria, dirt and other nas­ties to build up while we sleep.

Ac­cord­ing to Dr Philip Tierno Jr, the di­rec­tor of clin­i­cal mi­cro­bi­ol­ogy and im­munol­ogy at New York Uni­ver­sity’s Lan­gone Med­i­cal Cen­ter, your bed sheets can ac­cu­mu­late an ar­ray of dead skin, bac­te­ria, fun­gus and mites af­ter just one night’s sleep.

In a re­cent study, re­searchers found that feather and syn­thetic pil­lows be­tween 1.5 and two years old can con­tain be­tween four and 17 dif­fer­ent species of fun­gus.

And ac­cord­ing to clean­ing guru Shan­non Lush, quite a few of us are fail­ing when it comes to keep­ing our linen clean.

“If you’re show­er­ing once a day, you can wash your sheets weekly,” Ms Lush told news.com.au.

“How­ever, pil­low­cases should be changed ev­ery sec­ond day with­out fail. It’s against your face, and your hair holds more dirt than any­where else on the body. It’s like a mop.”

Ms Lush said few peo­ple re­alise how much skin cells and other nas­ties build up in a bed over time, and rec­om­mends wash­ing the doona ev­ery month along with our pil­lows.

Ms Lush said the best way to wash your doona, which can of­ten be a chal­lenge when at­tempted alone, is in the bath us­ing a small amount of cheap sham­poo.

“Stomp up and down on the doona, then rinse in the same tem­per­a­ture wa­ter,” she said.

When it comes to wash­ing sheets, Ms Lush sug­gests you don’t pour any rice wa­ter down the sink – be­cause that’s her se­cret in­gre­di­ent to achiev­ing “five-star ho­tel qual­ity linen”.

“I al­ways put rice wa­ter into the fi­nal rinse of my sheet wash,” she said.

“Af­ter cook­ing the rice, save that wa­ter and di­lute it one part rice wa­ter to four parts reg­u­lar wa­ter.

“Keep the mix­ture in a jar in the laun­dry, and add two ta­ble­spoons dur­ing the fi­nal rinse.”

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