If you make your bed right away with the sunrise, millions of dust mites that live on your bed will be trapped. They feed of your dead skin cells and sweat and can contribute to asthma and allergy issues. An unmade and open bed will expose the creatures to light and fresh air and will help to dehydrate and kill them off.
Dr. Stephen Pretlove from Kingston University School of Architecture offers a simple explanation – when you make your bed quickly after waking up, you are trapping your sweat, skin cells and your body heat. Leaving your unmade, you are exposing the sheets to light, drying them out and depleting the mites’ lifelines.
When we sleep we sweat a lot, a person may sweat up to a liter and thus creating ideal conditions for the mites.
Researchers estimate that there could be as many as 1.5 million dust parasites living in the average bed feeding on our old skin cells that we shed onto our sheets as we rest.
It is not so much their existence, it is what they leave behind that creates problems for humans. Their excretion can irritate dust allergies that are the reason for asthma.
Carolyn Forte, the director of the cleaning lab at the Good Housekeeping institute, told Good Housekeeping that not making the bed will not make a difference, since dust mites are found everywhere. However, she also said that leaving the bed unmade for some time during the morning will help the sheets to dry from your nighttime tosses and turns.
As we sleep, we sweat and our skin flakes onto the sheets that provide a feast for our bed’s dust mite inhabitants.
If the bed is made after waking up, all the skin cells, the moisture from your sweat and dust mites stay trapped beneath the sheets until bedtime.
Forte said that making the bed after breakfast is a good practice. Additionally, wash the sheets every two weeks, and you should not forget the pillow cases.
But if you leave the bed unmade, the dust mites dry up and the skin cells are left exposed to light and fresh air.
“We know that the dust mites can only survive by taking in water from the atmosphere using small glands on the outside of their body”, said Dr. Pretlove of Kingston University’s School of Architecture.
He also added that leaving your bed unmade during the day can remove moisture from your sheets, so that the mites will dehydrate or die.
So the experts really recommend leaving the bed unmade for the day.
After a day’s exposure to light and fresh air, the dust mites will die, leaving you to breathe a little easier.