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How To Disinfect A Used Mattress

The amount of sleep mandated by doctors is around seven to nine hours a day. 

However, sound sleep can be elusive, and even when tired, you may find yourself unable to fall asleep. Apart from an ambient sleeping environment, it’s also vital that you ensure that your bed is comfortable and clean. 

Cleanliness plays an important role because it is one of the keys to leading a healthy lifestyle. Thus, you must ensure that your mattress is free of germs and other elements. 

With this in mind, let’s find out how to disinfect a used mattress!

How To Disinfect A Used Mattress

What Can I Use To Disinfect My Mattress?

1. Hand-held Steamer

Hand-held steamers can be used for effective steam cleaning of a used mattress pad to get rid of debris, dust mites, and other bacteria and germs. This device can also dry clean a mattress.

2. Anti-bacterial Sprays

These can be sprayed on the mattress lightly, and they will efficiently remove all contaminants and germs. We suggest buying a spray that doesn’t contain bleach because bleach tends to discolour and destroy the mattress.

To use the spray, sprinkle a little bit across the mattress. Wait a few hours, and then wipe it off using a dust cloth. However, before you do this, read the back of the spray bottle carefully and follow its instructions, if any.

3. Baking Soda And Vinegar

Vinegar and baking soda are both household items that can be used to disinfect a mattress. Simply use a spray bottle to drizzle some vinegar onto the mattress and blot it with any cloth piece. Thereafter, sprinkle baking soda over the mattress, and vacuum it after some hours.

4. Vodka

Vodka isn’t just for getting you boozy; it’s also a pretty nifty disinfectant! Spraying some vodka over the mattress using a spray bottle will destroy all bed bugs and germs on the bed. However, remember to blot the mattress with a cloth after spraying it.

5. Shaving Foam

Alcohol is one of the ingredients of shaving foam and is known to be an effective cleaner. This is why shaving foam can be used to remove stains on a mattress!

To do this, spray some of the foam on the mattress, and wait for 20 minutes. Thereafter, wipe off the extra foam and rub the mattress with a cloth. Finish the cleaning process by rinsing the mattress with a solution made of 50% water and 50% vinegar, and then let the mattress dry.

5. Cornstarch

Cornstarch is a common kitchen item that is good for disinfecting used mattresses. Just smear cornstarch and baking soda in a 1:1 ratio over the mattress. Wait for around 30 minutes, and then vacuum it. Once the mattress is completely dry, you’ll notice that it is clean and germ-free.

Steps To Clean A Used Mattress

Step 1: Clear Everything From The Mattress

Remove the bed sheets and take off the mattress protector too. Lay the mattress onto a flat surface since that will make it easier to clean.

Step 2: Vacuum The Mattress

Using a hand vacuum, clean the back, sides, and of course, the surface of the mattress thoroughly. Move the vacuum from top to bottom so that all debris gets adequately removed.

Step 3: Take Out Any Visible Stains

There can be many different kinds of stains on a mattress:

A. Blood And Sweat Stains

Don’t worry; we’re not implying that you did the unthinkable! There could be many reasons for bloodstains on the bed sheets- bleeding during periods, cuts and injuries, etc. Since blood stains are more challenging to remove than other stains, you have to be extra particular.

Another thing you must keep in mind is that fresh mattress stains are easier to take out than old ones. So, if you accidentally stain the mattress, wash it right away to avoid permanent discolouration.

To remove the stain, blot it with a damp cloth until the stain isn’t visible anymore. After that, put some baking soda over it, and once it dries, vacuum it. However, this trick won’t work on dried stains in all likelihood. 

For dry stains, dampen the stain with cold water and sprinkle salt over it. Post that, use an old toothbrush to scrub the stain. After a couple of hours have elapsed, wash the stain with cold water. Lastly, use hydrogen peroxide to disinfect the stain. Voila! You’re now good to go.

B. Bodily Fluids

If you have a child, urine stains on the mattress can be a real menace. In addition to that, there could also be stains left on the mattress due to drool, sex, or sweat. 

Take water, dish soap, and hydrogen peroxide in equal parts to remove such stains and mix them. After that, put the solution inside a spray bottle and use it to spray some of it on the mattress. Once 20 minutes have passed, take a piece of cloth and wipe the solution away. You’ll have a clean mattress waiting for you!

Deodorising A Used Mattress

After years of use, mattresses may begin to smell old and musty. To get rid of this odour, deodorise your mattress using some baking soda and any scented essential oil.

Mix a few drops of the essential oil into the baking soda, and then pour this concoction over the mattress. Leave it for around a day, and then vacuum it. You can also repeat this process on both sides of the mattress for thorough deodorisation. 

However, keep in mind that deodorisation doesn’t really remove stains or germs and mostly gets rid of any musty or weird smells.

Final Thoughts

Mattresses are pretty absorbent and tend to collect a myriad of compounds over time. Bed bugs, period blood, urine, dead skin, and sweat are some common polluting substances.

Sleeping on a dirty mattress won’t just harm your physical health, but it’ll also impact your sleep quality and general mood. We recommend deep cleaning and disinfecting the entire mattress around twice a year. Any longer than that, and the mattress may become a cesspool of germs.

With this, we’ve reached the end of this guide. Until next time!

About the author

Being a Brit who lives in Australia, I'm always looking for good deals. In most cases, it is hard to find. So, I changed that, and made 👋 Hey Mattress. Having done plenty of hands-on research, me and the team decided to help more people to sleep better - Tom Greenspan.

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