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How To Clean And Disinfect Your Mattress

Jul 9, 2021

While a luxury mattress should be deep-cleaned by a professional, it’s also important to learn how to clean your mattress and disinfect it from viruses and bacteria at home.

Sleep Soundly on a Clean Mattress

The bedroom is a place of comfort and safety for most people so having a clean mattress should be a top priority. After all, you spend hours — if not the whole day — on your bed.

A mattress is an investment that you need to make. However, no matter how expensive it is, it’s useless if not cleaned properly.

Can you imagine sleeping with bacteria and bed bugs crawling all over your body while you sleep? That’s just gross!

Sleeping in a dirty bed may cause health issues for you and your family in the long run. If you want to be free of discomfort and illness during slumber, then your mattress should be treated with utmost care.

Remember, cleaning your mattress will depend on several factors like the type of foam used, the kind of stain, as well as its overall condition. Spills or seeped fluids require a different approach on how to clean mattress stains as well.

It’s always advisable to hire a vetted professional to make sure your beds are thoroughly cleaned and free of bed bugs. Cleaners possess top-notch tools to penetrate deeply-seated stains that a simple vacuuming can’t reach.

However, there may be times when hiring a professional cleaner isn’t possible. It’s best to learn the basic approaches to how to clean your mattress properly.

Gather Your Mattress Cleaners

Mattresses should be deep-cleaned at least twice a year or if you can, every change of season. Sheets and pillowcases should be changed and washed every week, however.

Before anything else, you first need to assemble your cleaning materials. To disinfect your mattress, you will need:

  • A vacuum (with an upholstery tool)
  • Dish soap mixed in water and vinegar or an enzyme cleaner
  • Detergent
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Washcloths
  • Essential oils (optional)

Once you’ve got all of these items ready, it’s time to get down and dirty with your mattress.

Step 1: Remove and Wash Beddings

After assembling all of your cleaning materials, strip the beddings from your mattress. This includes your pillow, pillowcases, sheets, and comforter.

Have these washed in hot water and detergent to make sure no dust mites, viruses, fungi, and bacteria will be left in the fabric. Let them spin in the machine while you work on the mattress.

Step 2: Vacuum Surface Dust and Debris

Stripped of the sheet, your mattress’s surface is now ready to be vacuumed. Use the upholstery tool and go through every inch of your mattress.

Vacuuming gets rid of dead skin cells, accumulated dust, and other debris like strands of hair or food crumbs.

Step 3: Steam Your Mattress

If you have a steamer, run it through the mattress with its nozzle positioned as close to the fabric as possible. The heat will penetrate the fabric and kill mites as well as viruses and bacteria near the surface.

Step 4: Spot-Clean Stains

If you have pets or kids, there’s a high chance of getting stains on your mattress. Not only do they look icky, but they can also smell horrendous, too.

Despite the temptation to do so, never soak your mattress in water, especially if it’s memory foam. Instead, you’ll need to use special cleaning tools like an enzyme cleaner or a DIY mixture of water and dish soap or hydrogen peroxide.

Here’s how to clean mattress stains at home:

  • Spray enzyme cleaner on a washcloth and blot it on biological stains like dog urine or period blood.
  • Continue to do so until the stain disappears.
  • If you don’t have an enzyme cleaner, sprinkle the stain with baking soda. Then let it stand for 15 minutes.
  • You can also use dishwashing soap mixed with water to wipe off the stain. Be careful not to pour the mixture into the bed; use the soap’s foam instead.

Do not soak your mattress in liquid as this may cause the stain to spread. Other chemicals may also cause harm to the foam.

Step 5: Disinfect Your Mattress

After disinfection, place the mattress in a sunlit area. The sun’s heat and UV rays do a great job of killing off any remaining harmful substances.

If your bed is too big to be dragged out into the sun, sprinkle baking soda all over the mattress and leave it there for a few hours. The powder will neutralize any lingering smell by absorbing moisture.

Step 6: Repeat on the Other Side

After a couple of hours, vacuum off the powder then flip the mattress. Now you’re ready to repeat the entire process on the other side.

Spring mattresses should be regularly flipped every three months or so. But other types don’t need to because they have dedicated tops and bottoms like Serta’s Perfect Sleeper mattress.

Optional: Use Essential Oils

Some essential oils can be used as a deodorizer or an antimicrobial for your mattress. It’s also great for aromatherapy to help you sleep better.

Add about 20 drops of these oils into a sprayer filled with a water and vinegar mixture and spritz them on your bed after cleaning. You can also mix a few essential oils for maximum effect.

Here are some essential oils you can mix and use to ward off bed bugs and harmful substances:

  • Peppermint oil – known for its antimicrobial properties and can be used as a deodorizer
  • Lavender oil – to help you relax and relieve stress
  • Eucalyptus oil – to refresh and help you breathe better which is great for relaxation
  • Tea Tree oil – an all-arounder when it comes to disinfection; used for its antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antiseptic properties
  • Lemon oil – its citrusy smell will brighten up your mood and deflects unwanted bugs
  • Rosemary oil – soothes your senses and relieves fatigue

Why You Need to Deep Clean Your Bed

Getting a good night’s sleep reinforces your immune response and keeps you from getting sick. That’s why thorough disinfection of your mattress should be done every season.

Meanwhile, beddings and pillowcases should be washed at least once a week.

You should also deal with stains, especially pet urine or vomit, right away to avoid harboring harmful bacteria. Use a damp (but not wet) washcloth to wipe off sticky stains.

If you’re unsure about cleaning your mattress by yourself, call a professional to do the job for you.

How often do you disinfect your mattress? Share your cleaning tips in the comments section below!