U.K. company peeps under the covers at Americans’ dirty bedtime habits

United Kingdom-based company MattressNextDay published a report earlier this month on American sleep habits, and the data illuminated some dirty truths about what U.S. sleepers are doing in their bedrooms.

To find out how hygienic the average American bedroom is, the company conducted a survey of 2,000 people across the country.

For starters, 66% of Americans surveyed said they let their pets sleep in their beds. The common habit can have some unclean consequences.

“Outdoor cats can bring muck into your bed, and indoor cats could bring in kitty litter, so make sure you stick to a weekly routine of washing your sheets,” MattressNextDay reported. “And, if you’re sleeping with your dog, you’ll want to make sure they have a consistent bedtime routine, which includes plenty of exercise, so they don’t keep you up all night wanting to play!”

Almost 40% of Americans said they wash their bedsheets every two to four weeks, far less often than the recommended weekly cleaning. A quarter of Americans said they wash their sheets every two weeks. Roughly 5% said they clean them every three weeks. And 10% of those surveyed said they wash their sheets every month.

“With more than half of Americans admitting to not washing before going to bed each night, and 32% not always washing their hands when they use the toilet at night, bacteria builds up quickly in your bed, which is why it’s so important you wash your sheets at least once a week,” the company reported.

Another bad habit many Americans reported is not brushing teeth before bed. Only 65% of those asked said they brush their teeth before bed, 19% said they occasionally skip the routine and 17% said they only rarely do so.

“Cleaning your teeth before bed is extremely important, as it removes any plaque built up from food and drink you’ve had throughout the day, which over time, could cause your teeth to decay,” the company reported. “Not only that, but it’s an important part of your bedtime routine, and can help your body start to relax and get ready for sleep.”

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