lifestyle

A very convincing case for not making your bed in the morning.

Image: iStock.

Fact: people who make their beds every day are insufferably smug.

Okay, that’s a bit harsh, but they do seem to derive a lot of self-satisfaction from the act of religiously tucking in their sheets and smoothing down their quilts. You can’t really blame them — daily bed-making is said to be a sign of an organised, productive, happy person who’s easy to live with.

However, a new report from The New Zealand Herald has delivered a major point to Team ‘Can’t Be Bothered’: it seems leaving your bed unkempt can actually create a healthier living environment.

In a nutshell, a tightly-made bed can effectively seal in the estimated 1.5 million (yep, MILLION) teeny-tiny dust mites that reside in the average bed — along with all the sweat and skin flakes we unknowingly shed throughout the night.

Making matters worse is the fact dust mites feast on all of this disgusting bodily detritus, so by trapping it all in your bed you’re actually helping the colony thrive and multiply.

She looks so pleased with herself, but someone has to break the news...

In other words, all you holier-than-thou bed makers are basically sabotaging yourselves. Sorry.

Leaving a bed unmade for the better part of the day, on the other hand, exposes the whole sweat/skin/mite smorgasbord to light and air, which is basically dust mite Kryptonite — evidently, they can only absorb water through the atmosphere.

"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," Dr Stephen Pretlove of Kingston University's School of Architecture tells the Herald.

Take that, bugs. (Post continues after gallery.)

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As far as excuses to skip bed-making (or at least leaving it for when you get home at the end of the day) go, this one is good enough to convince anyone. Maybe even your mum.

"I'm vanquishing a colony of dust mites" certainly sounds more legit than, "I just wanted that extra three minutes of sleep," or, "Look, it's only going to get messed up again tonight, so what's the point?" or even, "I just can't be bothered."

If you're concerned about the presence of dust mites in your sleep haven, regularly washing your bedding in warm water and using mattress and pillow protectors can help kill the little buggers, or at the very least protect you from the allergens they produce.

Do you make your bed every day? Why/why not?

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