Foam mattresses are thick and prone to staining and holding on to smells because of the porous nature of the material. Hence, if any accidents regarding urine spills take place, it is best to address the issue as soon as possible.
There could be several reasons for urine getting on your mattress. Your baby or toddler might have peed in their sleep, and the diaper leaked. Your pet may have accidentally peed while cuddling beside you on the bed. Or you may have a patient at home who could not get to the bathroom.
Foam mattresses are expensive, and you should not let urine stains ruin your mattress. You can use some simple DIY methods to get urine smells and stains off the mattress. You may also get them professionally treated if you want. But you do not have to go through the expenses if you use some simple methods to clean the foam mattress yourself.
The time of cleaning the mattress is crucial. The longer the urine stays on the mattress, the deeper it penetrates. Hence, taking action quickly is the key to cleaning it well and minimizing the chances of permanent staining.
Why is it Vital to Clean Urine From a Foam Mattress?
Unlike other spills and dirt that may affect your mattress, urine can have potentially harmful effects if you do not clean your mattress quickly. Here is why you should get it off the mattress as soon as possible.
- While food spills or dirt can only damage your mattress physically, urine can affect your health if any residue is left behind. The bacterial and fungal infestation from the moisture may result in infections if you sleep on the mattress without cleaning it thoroughly.
- Urine odor is difficult to get rid of, and the longer it stays, the harder it will become to get it off your foam mattress. You may have to remove the mattress just because of the stench, even if the foam remains undamaged.
- Urine is comprised of the toxic wastes of the human body, and if it stays on the mattress for long periods, it may break down and damage the foam. The foam could become complicated or dent easily. Getting it off the mattress as quickly as possible is the best way to preserve it.
Steps to Clean Urine Stain and Smell from a Foam Mattress Efficiently
Urine stains will look like dirty, yellow blobs if it sits on the mattress for extended periods. If you act quickly, you will prevent staining the mattress and get the urine out completely. Here is what you can do.
1. Strip the Bedding
First, remove all bedding from the mattress. Remove all bed sheets, covers, and even pillows and toss them in the washing machine. Your bed sheets should also be cleaned as quickly as possible, and do not wash them with your regular clothes.
2. Absorb the Fluid
If the urine is still fresh, use paper towels to absorb as much fluid as possible. Lightly press on the mattress till the paper towel is saturated, and change it for a fresh one. Keep doing it till the paper towels no longer absorb any fluids. Now you should move on to cleaning the residue.
If the urine has been sitting on the mattress for some time and the surface has already dried, skip this step and move on to the next step to clean the mattress as quickly as possible.
3. Prepare your Cleaning Solution
Simply using a detergent to clean your mattress is not enough, as liquid detergent and water can penetrate deep into the memory foam and ruin the mattress. Instead, prepare a cleaning solution with white vinegar and baking soda.
- Mix four small cups of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle.
- Mix well and spray the area with the solution. Remember only to spray it, and not scrub, as that will push the urine deeper into the mattress. The solution will prevent any stain from forming or will remove any stains that may have already formed.
- Let it sit for a few minutes, and use paper towels again to blot the area. The vinegar will break down the urine and dilute it enough to be absorbed by the paper towels.
- Repeat the steps several times to ensure all the urine has been absorbed from the mattress.
4. Odor Treatment
Once you have drawn out all the moisture, it is time to make sure that the mattress does not emit any odor. This may happen because of any residue left behind.
- You can resolve this issue by sprinkling a generous amount of baking soda over the affected area. Use a sieve and generously sprinkle baking soda, some over the edges where the urine saturation on the mattress has stopped.
- Leave the layer of baking soda on the mattress for eight hours at least. The baking soda will probably draw out some residual moisture and form a crust on the mattress.
- Vacuum the baking soda off the mattress after eight hours. Your mattress should feel dry and fresh, but if you still notice any odor, repeat the process with the vinegar mixture and baking soda.
- Keep doing it until you are satisfied the mattress has no odor.
Baking soda absorbs odors and smells because of its pH levels. You can use thick layers of baking soda to draw out moisture and odor from the mattress. Let it sit for eight to ten hours till a crust is formed, which you can vacuum later.
Once the mattress is free from stains and odors, it is time to disinfect the mattress. You can spray any sanitizer on the mattress to disinfect it. Then, take the mattress outside if you can and leave it in the sunlight for a day. Sunlight is a natural disinfectant that will help dry any remaining moisture in the deeper layer of the foam mattress.
If taking the mattress outside is not an option, try taking it to a window and letting it air dry for a day or two before you use the mattress again.
Removing Urine Stains from a Mattress
At times, it may so happen that urine had already stained the mattress before you become aware of it. Perhaps the baby had wet the bed at some point, and you did not notice. In such cases, you must go further to remove the urine stain.
- To remove a urine stain, you must make a mixture of hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, dish soap, or laundry detergent.
- Mix eight ounces of hydrogen peroxide with three tablespoons of baking soda in a bowl. Add half a teaspoon of laundry detergent to it. Mix well and pour it into a spray bottle.
- Spray the solution generously over the stained areas. Allow the mixture to soak into the mattress.
- Then take some dry baking soda and spread it generously over the area. Let it sit for a few hours. Then vacuum the baking soda crust. The baking soda will absorb the solution and, along with it, the urine that stained the mattress.
- Repeat the process a few times as needed till the stain is gone.
The reason behind using hydrogen peroxide is pure science. However, wetting the mattress to a considerable degree may not seem like a good idea at first. You will see how well it works when the stain is gone.
This is because the hydrogen peroxide draws the urine to the surface deep within the mattress as the peroxide evaporates. The baking soda then absorbs the residue, which you suck out from the mattress by vacuuming.
The only thing to remember here is to remove any colored bedding from the mattress, as hydrogen peroxide may dull the colors. It may also discolor some areas of your mattress, but other than that, it will not harm the memory foam in any way. Nevertheless, use it sparingly and prevent urine from getting on the mattress.
How to Prevent Urine Stains and Odors?
Prevention is always better than cure. Hence, preventing the mattress from getting stained by urine is much better than trying to remove it. Here are some preventative measures to prevent urine from staining the mattress.
- Go to the pet store and buy enzyme cleaners. These are effective in breaking down toxins in urine to remove the smell. This will prevent pets from marking the territory again on your mattress.
- Invest in waterproof mattress toppers. This will prevent the mattress from getting wet and prevent any kind of spills and stains.
- Ensure your baby always has the diaper fit snugly to prevent any leaks on the mattress.
It is alright to have concerns when your mattress is affected by urine. It is messy and could affect your mattress long-term if not treated right. Here are some questions to help you take care of your mattress in a better way.
Is baking soda harmful to the body?
Since you will be using a considerable amount of baking soda to eliminate urine stains and odor from your mattress, you may be worried about whether it will harm you. However, you have no reason to worry, as baking soda is completely safe and natural and will not result in any health issues.
Why is using laundry detergent on the mattress not enough?
Laundry detergent will probably get out some of the urine, but you will not be able to do so without damaging your mattress. The harsh chemicals from the detergent may damage your mattress foam.
Moreover, the water you need to use the detergent will penetrate deep into the mattress, and it could be impossible to dry it out completely. The trapped moisture could also damage your mattress and attract germs and mites.
Is it safe to sleep on the mattress after cleaning the urine from it?
Yes, once you have cleaned the affected area of your mattress thoroughly with baking soda and hydrogen peroxide, it is safe to go back to sleeping on it. However, make sure you clean it thoroughly to avoid any residue that may cause problems later.
Lingering urine stench on the mattress can be very unhygienic. It will attract insects and pests and will also result in infections and allergies. However, since you cannot wash your mattress like regular clothing, you have to think of other ways of cleaning it when there is a urine leak on the mattress.
Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are excellent agents for cleaning urine stains. All you need is some patience for the agents to work, and your mattress will be as fresh as ever.