With Maxwell spending a year in bed, I've been thinking a lot about my own sleeping arrangements. My mattress is only a couple of years old and it's oh-so-comfortable so I'm trying to prolong its life by following the simple care guidelines. While some memory foam and new-technology mattresses have their own unique care guidelines, these are just a couple of guidelines when it comes to caring for a traditional mattress:
First, of course, is to use a mattress pad. A removable mattress pad creates a barrier between you and the mattress, protecting your mattress from body moisture, dead skin cells, and all that other icky stuff that our bodies emit while we sleep.
It's also recommended that you vacuum your mattress every few months. Vacuuming the mattress will help remove those dead skin cells and dust mites that do collect in it. If it's possible where you live, it's also a good idea to drag your mattress outside and let it air out (especially in the sun!) for a few hours. My grandmother used to do this and I can still remember the fresh outdoorsy smell that the mattress would pick up.
The final suggestion for keeping a mattress new longer is to flip it every six months. In addition to flipping it side-to-side, the mattress should be flipped from head-to-toe. Flipping a mattress will help it wear evenly and also give one side a rest for a few months.
Does anyone actually follow these guidelines? Now that I've read about all the dead and dusty things that may live in my mattress, I'll certainly start vacuuming it. And I have been flipping the mattress – if not every six months, at least once a year. Then again, with my platform bed, the easiest way to vacuum under it during my semi-annual big clean is to remove the mattress completely, giving me reason to flip it.
What about you? Do you flip your mattress? Weigh in in the comments section below.
Images: Jason Loper