The term ‘hospital linen’ includes all textiles used in the hospital including mattress, pillow covers, blankets, bed sheets, towels, screens, curtains, doctors coats, theatre cloth and table cloths. Source: v2020eresource
Remember, hospital bed linen comes in contact with the skin of the patient, so it is crucial to have modified linens that will not compromise the health of the patients.
Hospital Bed Sheets
The bedsheet is one of the linens used in hospital, healthcare or community care centres. It is defined as a piece of cloth used to cover the bed mattress which enhances the comfort of the person sleeping over it.
The sheets used on hospital beds are different from the bedsheets that people use at their homes. It is because the hospital bed sheets are designed to enhance the comfort of the patient, facilitate quick recovery and improve the user’s general health. It is important to note that the usage of hospital bedsheets is not just specific to healthcare facilities but also in the homecare or community care centres where there is a usage of hospital beds for inhouse patients.
This blog post is focused on only one type of hospital linen i.e hospital bed sheets, its features, size of hospital bed sheets, advantages and disadvantages of different types of sheets. This page will also enable you to get the best available bed sheets for the hospital (or home care) and the complete product review.
The hospital sheets come in various types, sizes, and shapes, which will be discussed later in the article. Hospital bed sheets are also made of cotton, just like other sheets, but most of them are woven sheets that are made of crisscrossed threads.
The thread count of a sheet determines its cost and its durability. Linen that has a lower thread count tends to have a shorter life span as, and it is less expensive compared to the one which has a higher thread count.
What is the minimum thread count of a hospital bed linen? The standard thread count of a hospital bed sheet is 130, which is a fair count. Such a bed sheet is affordable, durable, and soft, making it the perfect option for hospital use.
Remember, a hospital bed sheet requires frequent washing. Therefore, it should be made of a sturdy material that will ensure its longevity to meet the needs of the hospitals.
Hospital Bed Sheets v/s Normal Home Bed Sheets
Hospital bed sheets are designed to enhance the comfort of the patient and ensure that he/she does not feel any pain. Some of the patients who are admitted to the hospital have got fractures while others have sores and various other conditions. The hospital bed linen should, therefore, not pose any discomfort and harm to the sore of the patient or worsen the condition. It is for this reason that the hospital bed sheets are made of classic fabric materials ranging from cotton to polyester and, in some instances, a combination of both.
On the other hand, home bed linen dos not necessarily need to be made of high-end material because you are not managing any condition. You can buy any sheet that is made of any material depending on your choice and your preference. Also, in terms of design, the hospital sheets tend to be softer than the home-based sheets. Some patients might be having skin diseases, thus need their skin to be treated with harmony so as not to trigger pain. Hospital sheets are also allergy-protective, thus ideal for accommodating people with dust-related allergies and many others.
Hospital bed sheets are more washable than the normal bed sheets. The hospital sheets have been designed that way because of the situation where they are used. Most of the hospitals serve many patients with various conditions. This means that there is frequent changing of the bed linen in the hospital. A health facility that is concerned with the health status of the in-patients changes the bed linens of the patients on a daily bases. The facility bed sheets should, therefore, be washable to avoid cross-contamination and cross infection among the users of the linens.
When talking about the Washability of the linen, the focus point is the material used in the manufacturing of the sheets. Some materials are not washable while they are washable. Washable fabric materials are known to many as they include cotton, spandex, polyester, olefin, among many others. Non-washable fabrics include acetate, rayon, and rope, silk, among many others. For your home bed garments, you can opt either washable or non-washable fabrics, but for the hospital bed linens, you ought to go for washable fabrics.
The fabric of a hospital bed sheet should be breathable while that used in homes does not necessarily have to be breathable. Breathable fabric is the one that easily allows air to pass through it. Such linen does not become too warm; neither does it become too cold: it becomes neutral and favours the temperature of the patient. Some of the patients are hypothermic, while others can be hyperthermic. When a hyperthermic patient lies on a sheet that is not breathable, the condition will keep on worsening as there will be no regulation of the body temperature. The outside environment of the patient should be regulated to counteract the internal body temperature of the invalid. One of the most effective ways of doing so is by using breathable linen on the bed on the patient.
Main Features of Hospital Bed Sheets
Hospital bed sheets are designed with excellent fabrics that make them last longer as compared to any other sheets. This is because the sheets tend to be used regularly, and they require frequent washing. The fabric used in their manufacturing is designed in a way that they can withstand numerous washes and even the strongest detergents. Sometimes the patients who use the linen could be having sores or bleed heavily, and this would call for thorough washing of the bedsheet. The sturdy fabric material will enable the bed sheets not to fade easily even after being washed with the toughest detergents and other washing chemicals.
One of the key features of hospital bed sheets is their ability to stay drier and cooler. Hospital sheets should be able to evaporate moisture quickly instead of retaining it in the sheets. Most of the hospital bed linen is made of poly fibre, which is an effective material that can allow moisture to evaporate out quickly. Some of them also have their fabrics weaved tightly, making them release moisture easily. When you wash a hospital sheet, it always takes less time to dry up, and this is because of the material used in their manufacturing. The effective cooling capability also allows the patient to breathe comfortably at night and during the day there for enhancing comforting of the patients and general wellness.
Every person who wants to buy a sheet goes for the soft one. Among the softest sheets in the market that one can have are the hospital bed sheets. Some of these sheets have a reversible brushed peach skin on ether sides, and this makes them to be the softest sheets. The thread count of the weaved bed sheets ranges from 130 thread count and above. This number of thread count also contributes to the softness of the bedsheets. When you wish a luxury clinic sheet, it does not wrinkle after getting out of the dryer, and this is because of the nature of the materials used in its manufacturing.
Types of Hospital Bed Sheets
Cotton sheets are among the most common types of linen that are used in hospital beds. It is the most common because of the various advantages that the material comes with. These cotton sheets are also available in various colours, but the highly preferred colour for hospital sheets is the white colour. This is because white sheets will determine any secretion from the body that will ooze out of the body of the patient, thus making diagnosis simple. Apart from cotton sheets being soft at the initial time of their purchase, they also become softer as time goes by.
Flannel sheets are other types of hospital sheets that are mainly used for cold nights or during the winter season. They are excellent heat trappers, and they tend to warm the body, thus preventing the patient from becoming hypothermic. Flannel sheets are made of special cotton that has been shredded off to be softer than the raw cotton. The yarns of the sheets are shaved to let them be open and let the fibre out. To determine the quality of a flannel sheet, you do to use the thread count; instead, you use a weight indicator. The weight of flannel is measured in grams per square meter, and the higher the weight, the better the sheet.
Lyocell is one of the best materials that are used in manufacturing bed sheets. This material is obtained from wood cellulose, making it one of the bets non-pollutant material used in manufacturing linen. These sheets are ideal for use in hospital setups because once it has been washed; it does not lose its softness, neither does it wrinkles after drying up. However, Lyocell sheets are slightly more expensive than cotton sheets. The sheets also retain their softness from the first day of use to the next years when you will keep on using them. However, the caretakers or hospital workers need to handle the sheets with care for them to last longer.
Silk sheets are highly reputable bed sheets in the world as it is more luxurious. These are cool and provides maximum comfort to the user. It is because of this that the silk sheets are also excellent options for hospital use. Patients who are suffering from various allergies can be helped by being serviced with silk sheets. This is because the sheets are naturally hypoallergenic, thus keeping always allergens such as dust, microbes, and many others. The sheets are made of fibre that is obtained from silkworms, making them softer, thus need delicate care.
Normally polyester is combined with other fabrics to design economical bed sheets. Why polyester is combined with other fabric material? This is because the material itself has the characteristics of being scratchy and stiff, thus uncomfortable to sleep on. They have to blend with other fabric materials for them to provide excellent sleeping linens. Most of the polyester sheets are light in weight, and they feel cool. When you touch them, they are soft, and some of the classic polyester sheets have a shiny surface. The sheets are less prone to shrinking and wrinkling as compared to other materials like cotton and linen.
The details mentioned above are some of the best types of sheets that a healthcare facility can purchase for its in-patient beddings.
However, before purchasing any other bedsheets, it is crucial to look at some factors. These factors include the type of materials used to manufacture the need sheet, the durability, cost, softness, and breathability. These are all crucial factors which enhances the wellbeing of the patients either at a healthcare facility or at-home care services.
You can find the best hospital mattress for your beds from this page. This page will enable you to find the different types of mattresses suitable for the different types of hospital beds and home beds. To get more insights about different types of hospital beds, visit the page “Best Hospital beds – buyers guide”.
“Bedsheet”. Merriam-Webster. Retrieved 2012-05-26.
Elsasser, Virginia Hencken (2004). Know Your Home Furnishings. New York, NY: Fairchild Publications. ISBN 1563672421. OCLC 53051985.
Willbanks, Amy (2014). Textiles for Residential and Commercial Interiors. ISBN 9781609019372. OCLC 953427784.
Boykin, George, “The Difference Between Percale & Sateen”