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The term ‘antimicrobial’ is something that you hear in a variety of places – but you may have never stopped to think about what it means. It’s easy to assume that using an antimicrobial fabric, for instance, would be a good thing – but why? What does it accomplish, and how does it get the job done?
In this post, we are going to take a closer look at this topic. When we are finished, you will have a better understanding of why antimicrobial fabrics are such an important component of detention mattresses (along with being used in countless other applications). As you shop for the right mattress for your facility, be sure to look for an antimicrobial cover that will help to keep everyone healthy.
What Does Antimicrobial Mean?
In a detention center facility, the threat of a virus spreading is always something that needs to be monitored. With so many people living in close quarters, and no assurance that everyone will be staying on top of personal hygiene, these are high-risk environments for viral spread. Every step that can be taken in terms of supplies and procedures to limit the risk of a virus is something that should be considered.
As the name itself would suggest, an antimicrobial is something that fights against microorganisms to either kill them off or at least stop their growth. Of course, this is not limited to just fabrics – there are many different kinds of antimicrobials, including things like antibiotics and disinfectants. While the method and application can vary wildly, the goal is always the same. An antimicrobial will attempt to counter microorganisms that could otherwise be harmful if left alone.
Are Mattresses Really a Threat?
At first, it might not seem like a mattress would be a place you’d need to worry about with regard to microbes. Instead, you may think about common touchpoints like door handles, bathroom areas, etc. However, any surface that offers a ‘comfortable’ place for a microbe to set up shop could be a threat. On a standard household mattress, for instance, the warm cloth surface is dotted with tiny little nooks and crannies that are perfect for organism spread.
As a result, a standard mattress really isn’t a good choice for a detention facility (along with many other reasons). By choosing a mattress with an antimicrobial cover, it will be far less likely to spread pathogens in the facility on this surface. This certainly isn’t the only step you’ll need to take to reduce the threat of pathogens moving through your detention center, but it is a good starting point.
How Does It Work?
It’s important to understand that antimicrobial fabric doesn’t actually indicate a specific type of fabric – many different types can be made antimicrobial through the proper manufacturing process. Some common types of fabric put to use when an antimicrobial finish is desired include nylon, polyester, and others.
It may seem complex, but the way antimicrobial fabrics work is actually somewhat simple. The goal is to keep the microorganisms out of the places they would otherwise like to live within the fabric. In other words, the antimicrobial is going to attempt to stop the pathogens from attaching to the surface of the product in the first place. If they can’t attach, they won’t be able to spread and put others at risk. Where they microbes would have otherwise found a nice place to live and spread, they instead find an unwelcoming environment that will hopefully bring their existence to an end.
A Simple Step to Take
The fact is that it’s not difficult to find a detention mattress with an antimicrobial cover. So, taking this step for granted and forgetting to add this point to your shopping list is an unnecessary mistake. By picking a mattress that not only has an antimicrobial cover, but also all of the other properties that you need for quality long-term performance, you are likely to be pleased with the end result of your purchase.