Why the Right Hospital Bedding Matters for Patient Care

Because patients may sometimes need to spend weeks in a hospital bed, it’s important that an effort is made to use the right bedding for their needs. This can improve their comfort, keep the setting more hygienic and even boost the overall feel of a room. Good hospital bedding can also make cleaning and maintenance easier, which is an added benefit.

Why Does Patient Bedding Matter?

Some the main reasons it’s worth investing in the right bedding for patients include the following:

Comfort

Probably the most obvious advantage of good bedding is that it will help a patient stay more comfortable. Bedding helps keep a patient warm and provide them with a soft, mostly flat surface to lay on. Many people like sleeping with the feeling of at least some weight on top of them, which blankets provide. 

Perhaps of any of the reasons to prioritize good bedding, comfort will be the most important from the patient’s perspective. Staying at a hospital can be an inherently anxious, odd experience and a patient will certainly appreciate a nice bed if they need to have an extended stay.

Discussed in more detail later, with comfort generally comes an easier rest and a more pleasant day-to-day experience. It’s also worth noting that, with bedding, at a certain point, safety becomes an issue, but most hospitals in developed nations aren’t so cold or hot, or ill-equipped that they can’t at least provide a nonhazardous bed.

Hygiene

Hygiene is important in any medical setting. Dangerous germs can be present and they can stick to surfaces and live on them for long periods of time. The most important aspect of bedding in this area is likely a bed’s fitted sheet, which covers the mattress. If a mattress gets dirty, it can be hard (or simply impossible) to clean and the issues won’t always be immediately obvious. 

Although even good sheets can’t perfectly protect a mattress, they can at least help. Getting sheets that tightly hug a mattress without slipping isn’t difficult. There are even adjustable sheets with straps that allow them to fit onto different-sized mattresses. 

Presentation or Aesthetic

Although not the priority in a medical setting, there’s still value to maintaining a good aesthetic in a room. Clean, well-organized bedding with a unified color scheme can help a patient feel more at rest and that the facility is invested in providing them with a quality experience. 

As long as safety or care efficacy isn’t sacrificed, there’s little reason to ignore developing a nice aesthetic for a patient room. Bedding can even be branded to remind people during their stay of the company providing their care.

Maintenance & Cleaning

Maintenance and cleaning are important in medical settings. Hospital bedding needs to be cleaned thoroughly. Killing as many dangerous microorganisms on bedding as possible before it gets used again can literally be a matter of life or death. This intense cleaning process has the potential to cause more significant wear than is typical in something like a typical hospitality business. 

Bedding that cleans easily and is durable and therefore able to handle harsher cleaning, will last longer. This means it will be able to provide a patient with a quality experience for more time while also saving a hospital on replacement or repair costs.

If you’re interested in learning more about cleaning in medical settings, check out this article on the types of disinfectants used in hospitals.

The Importance of Rest

Although the ways our bodies rest and recover aren’t fully understood, it’s well accepted and documented that rest is an important part of healing and maintaining one’s health. In medicine, the related concept of comfort is also important because it can facilitate rest and provide a patient with needed relief. 

At least some evidence has suggested that a deficiency of hospital beds or appropriate bedding can have a detrimental impact on the health of patients. This is most apparent in areas where medical resources are less abundant (where patients may not have a bed at all), but it’s still relevant when discussing the issue of providing patients with quality bedding. 

Obviously, good bedding is only part of how a hospital can help a patient rest and recover in more comfort; however, it’s very much an important part of facilitating that comfort. If a patient needs an extended stay at a medical facility, most of that time will often be spent lying in bed. The quality of their bedding has the potential to significantly impact their stay.  

Conclusion

The importance of providing a patient with a comfortable experience shouldn’t be underestimated. If someone will need to spend days or even weeks or months primarily lying in bed, the setting should be as comfortable as possible. Although it may not affect the safety of the patient or the efficacy of their care, good bedding can help reduce anxiety, improve rest and provide even more benefits. All of this can boost overall well-being, which has an effect on health.

At Alsco, we equip businesses big and small with bed linens appropriate to their needs. We can keep your hospital well stocked with clean, quality bed linens and we make the process easy. If you’d like to learn more, read about our linen rental services and/or contact our team, so we can discuss the specifics of your model in more detail.

References

Rest. (April 2015). Global Qualitative Nursing Research

The Impact of Hospital Bed and Beddings on Patients: The Ghanaian Healthcare Consumer Perspectives. (2019). Semantic Scholar.

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