An Unmade Bed is a Healthy Bed

Make your bed before you start the day! 

Yep, I was that mom.  There was just something about looking into Boy’s room and seeing the bed pulled together that made the rest of the chaos easier to accept.  Didn’t hurt that this was an important household issue, drilled into my youthful brain by The German.

If she knew I rarely make my bed now, she would be all gathered together eyebrows and scrunched lips.  NEIN!

My bed, as I left it this morning:

An Unmade Bed is a Healthy Bed

So, what changed my bed-making ways?  Dust mites.  Creepy, asthma-provoking, allergen generating dust mites.

I ran across the research years ago and BAM! no more bed making.

Research suggests that while an unmade bed may look scruffy it is also unappealing to house dust mites thought to cause asthma and other allergies.

A Kingston University study discovered the bugs cannot survive in the warm, dry conditions found in an unmade bed.

The research was key for those suffering from asthma and allergies, which can be brought on by many things, one of which is the by-product dust mites produce after feeding on particles of human skin found in all beds.


The key in the study was water content, because dust mites thrive in moist environments.  A made bed traps in moisture from the warm bodies that occupied it during the night, leaving the perfect party joint for the icky creatures.  If you eliminate the water source, simple moisture, then you reduce the mite population and the exposure to allergens.

An unmade bed, left unmade all day, drys out the bed and provides a hostile environment for dust mites.

Not all agree, though:

Professor Andrew Wardlaw, of the British Society for Allergy and Clinical Immunology: …most homes in the UK are sufficiently humid for the mites to do well and I find it hard to believe that simply not making your bed would have any impact on the overall humidity.”

It’s for this reason, in my house, we take it one step further.  Because we live in a humid locale, once we are out of bed in the morning, I pull the sheets back and keep the ceiling fan running during the day to make sure the bed gets a solid drying and the concentration of mites is decreased.  I also employ the fan method when stripping the bed to wash the sheets, so that the mattress underneath gets a solid drying out.

And if someone comes to our house?  I simply shut the bedroom door.

For all of you who had it drilled into your head as a child to MAKE YOUR BED!, or were made to feel like a slob if you didn’t (I apologize, Boy), I offer this little bit of research to embolden you to leave your bed unmade without any mother-guilt ringing in your ears.

Do it for your health.  Yeah, that’s what we’re going for…our health.

Stop rolling your eyes.  It’s SCIENCE!

Happy Healthy Bed, Y’all!



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  1. Interesting! I had no idea. Great tip about turning on the ceiling fan and drying out the mattress.

  2. Who knew?!?! I love the look of a nicely made bed but that NEVER happens here. Now feel so much better about it!!!

  3. OMGosh. I have terrible dust allergies and we just got a new bed. I’m running upstairs now to unmake my bed because I had NO IDEA. Thanks, Patti!

  4. I’ve never been much of a bed maker… I’m guessing I was intuitively ahead of the science behind this 😉

  5. Because She Who Must Be Obeyed has back problems, it falls on me to make the bed. Every morning, six decorative pillows go on; every night six decorative pillows come off. Now I know I am right to object; too bad my objections don’t matter. 🙂

  6. I like my bed made of a morning, I don’t like the look of an unmade bed, I don’t care if it is healthy to have an unmade bed, I like my bed made

  7. Hmmm… While I think this is great, I have a feeling my 3 boys are now going to stage a mutiny because they will now be sure there must be some science behind their desire to not pick up their toys… I won’t be pushing the bed making anymore for my little asthmatics, but I won’t share why… I’ve stepped on enough legos 😉 I swear these kids can debate like lawyers. Thanks so much for sharing this! So interesting!

  8. AMEN! Not because of the dust mites, although that is my new reason lol, but simply because I am lazy. I really don’t see the point, especially when the kids sometimes nap in them. Life is short, why spend so much of it cleaning?

  9. Finally I am doing something that is good for my health! ha ha Thanks for sharing!


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