Those of us that don’t have toddlers or young children in the home may think tips for cleaning bedwetting stains won’t apply to us, but over the holidays I was pulling out this information when visiting family with children caught me by surprise .
The first tip is to plan ahead. If you know children will be staying the night, prepare their bed before they arrive. It’s nice to do this when they’re not around since no one will know what you’ve been up to (most kiddos are sensitive about their accidents so it’s nice to do this covertly).
- There are a couple different things you can do. You can buy a plastic cover or lay a garbage bag down the middle of the bed (first split it open and make sure the bag covers the width end to end). If you have an old vinyl tablecloth that you don’t use, you could lay that on instead (if fabric backed–leave the fabric side up).
- On top of the plastic lining, lay a large towel to cover. Then put on the pad and then the fitted sheet.
With this setup, chances are the little ones won’t even know you’ve prepared for potential accidents.
If you were caught without your mattress protected, here are a few ways to cleanup the mess (you can use a blacklight to see what size of area you’re dealing with, the urine will glow):
- Mix a pourable thick paste with cornstarch and water, stir until there are no lumps and make enough to cover the entire area.
- Pour the cornstarch mixture over the spot and leave it for several hours to dry. You can do this overnight if you like.
- Once the cornstarch is dried thoroughly, vacuum off.
Use your blacklight again to see if you caught it all. If not, reapply a fresh batch of cornstarch mix.
1 part white vinegar
2 parts dishwashing liquid
- Lift up as much of the urine as you can with paper towels blotting and soaking up the spot.
- Next mix the vinegar and dishwashing liquid in a container and apply over spot with a wet sponge, dab it on generously. Let the soap sit for 30 minutes.
- Take a wet sponge and pull up as much of the soap that you can.
- Sprinkle wet area generously with cornstarch and leave for several hours–then vacuum up.
This one’s from the page for cleaning cat urine (found here) .
1 16-oz. bottle Hydrogen Peroxide
1 TBS Baking Soda
1 tsp dish detergent (liquid)
- Mix ingredients into an old plastic container and stir well with a plastic or wooden spoon (do not use metal utensils or metal dishes).
- Once powder is dissolved, pour liquid into a plastic squirt bottle and squirt on urine spot, completely saturate the area. Do not scrub or touch the spot, leave the solution to set and air dry for at least one hour.
- After it’s completely dry, vacuum the spot–there may be baking soda residue. You can wipe with a rag if needed.
Lingering Odors: If you’re concerned about lingering odors, you can also spray some vinegar & sprinkle baking powder over the now dried and cleaned stain before making a fresh bed (wait for vinegar to dry before making it up).
- Wash it all as soon as possible after an accident, using a good 1/2 cup of vinegar per load (cider vinegar if you have it). This will help kill the smell.
These are for general mattress care:
- Use a cover to protect it and wash at least once a month.
- Remove stains by lightly dabbing with liquid dish detergent that has been well diluted in water. For toughies like blood spots, try blotting with hydrogen peroxide.
- When stripping the beds down for laundry, freshen things up by sprinkling a thin layer of baking soda directly on top of it. Leave sit for a few hours then vacuum the powder up.
- Air it out by letting the sun in, open up the curtains and windows when the bed is stripped down.
- Turn it over every few months to help prevent permanent wear spots (flip top to bottom and side to side).