Your mother always told you to make your bed. Every single morning after you got out of bed you’d get the inevitable question: “Did you make your bed?” Well, guess what? It turns out mum was wrong — it’s actually better for you, and for your overall health, not to make your bed at all.
Why? Because of these little guys:
The mighty house dust mite. Actually, it’s not mighty at all. These microscopic little buggers are running rampant in your bed (sorry, but it’s true). In fact, the average bed can be home to 1.5 million of them. House dust mites feed on human skin scales, so they love to take up residence with us under the sheets. The allergens they produce (which are actually the mites’ poop) are easily inhaled during sleep and are a major cause of illnesses like asthma. They don’t exactly help dust allergies, either.
When we sweat and roll around during the night our skin flakes off onto the sheets. In the morning, if we pull up the sheets and make our beds immediately, all of the skin scales, sweat and mites will be trapped underneath.
But, if we don’t make our bed, the mites, the scales and the sweat will be exposed to fresh air and light.
“We know that mites can only survive by taking in water from the atmosphere using small glands on the outside of their body,” Dr. Stephen Pretlove of Kingston University’s School of Architecture said. “Something as simple as leaving a bed unmade during the day can remove moisture from the sheets and mattress so the mites will dehydrate and eventually die.”
Experts recommend leaving your bed unmade for the entire day — yes, the entire day — and making it (if you must) when you get home later on. By that point, many of the mites will have died.