The skin is a complex organ and its importance in protecting against infection is not always fully understood. Could the solution lie in an ingenious design of mattress? We asked the experts from Squirrel Medical.
What is the skin?
The skin is a complex organ that serves several roles including protection against the sun, rain and bacteria. It helps to prevent us from getting too hot or too cold, and through its exposure to sunlight, facilitates the creation of vitamin D, which is important to the immune system. Our skin allows us to touch, sense pain and signal our emotions to others. It is however subject to frequent assaults to include impact, burns, cuts and stings. This is one of the reasons why the skin is constantly in a state of rejuvenation.
Can the skin heal itself?
Our skin, as with a newt’s tail, has the ability to fully rejuvenate itself. An example of this is when a child grazes their knee. Initially there is pain, blood, swelling and debris that contaminates the wound, and yet within a matter of weeks a new section of fully functional skin tissue has been created. However, some more serious wounds may struggle to fully rejuvenate. A typical example is superficial scar tissue.
Does the skin’s ability to heal fade as we get older?
As we age our skin’s ability to heal and rejuvenate diminishes in terms of the rate of recovery and the extent of the recovery. This coincides with a decline in our ability to fight infection. That is why hygiene (skin) and infection control (clean beds and mattresses) is so important.
Why is the skin such an important protection against infection?
Minor skin tissue injuries such as bites, stings, cuts, ulcers and burns are generally not dangerous per se, but as a route to infection they are. The bite from a mosquito is the route to life-threatening malaria and the smallest ulcer on the heel is a route to life-threatening MRSA and Clostridium difficile. It is therefore important to try and avoid minor skin injuries, and to facilitate their speedy and healthy recovery.
How serious is the problem of infection in the healthcare system?
The National Institute for Healthcare Excellence (NICE) estimates that 300,000 patients a year in England acquire a healthcare‑associated infection and that in 2007, MRSA and Clostridium difficile infections contributed to approximately 9,000 deaths. It unknown how many people die each year within their own homes as a result of infection.
Why are conventional mattresses a problem for hygiene?
Most mattresses are absorbent; in effect large moist sponges. Even pocket spring mattresses will contain fibres; cotton, wool and silk. Humans shed dead skin and sweat and some of this seeps into the mattress, creating the perfect environment for dust mites and bacteria. Bacteria, such as MRSA, can enter the tiniest of wounds and dust mites can trigger asthma. The challenge is that it’s almost impossible to wash and dry the inside of most mattresses.
What is a ‘noodles’ mattress?
The noodles mattress is made of hygienic organic polymers and each of its noodles repesl bodily fluids, dust mites and bacteria. In the event of soliing, the mattress cover can be removed, and the inner core washed using regular household detergent, and then rinsed in the shower or under the garden hose.
What are the benefits of ‘noodle’ mattresses?
The primary benefit of the noodles mattress is that bacteria and dust mites can be washed away. As a bonus, the innner core contains air channels that enable the body to wick away excess heat and moisture. This is important because a healthy skin microclimate is better for skin health. Also, by maintaining a comfortable temperature we are generally able to sleep better.
Are ‘noodle’ mattresses equally suitable for healthcare environments and the home?
Yes, the noodles mattress allows everyone to benefit from a leading healthcare mattress. It has been designed to fit most bed frames, and is available with a luxurious fabric cover for domestic use and a vapour permeable cover for healthcare use.
Who is Squirrel Medical?
Squirrel Medical, founded in 2003, specialises in the research and design of health care beds and mattresses, that enable healthy home living. The team has recently been awarded the prestigious ISO13485:2016 accreditation by, SGS, the worlds leading accreditation body. This means that SGS believe that Squirrel Medical have achieved or exceeded some of the most robust customer service and product quality regulations.
Where do I find out more Squirrel Medical / Noodles?
Due to Coronavirus / infection control, Squirrel have created an online video presentation for the Noodles mattress. This can be viewed at www.squirrelmedical.com. or call Squirrel Medical at 0845 003 7979
About: Gary Baker
Gary Baker MPS, is a Sleep Health Scientist, published author and inventor of medical mattresses. Gary recently lead a team of scientists to discover that your choice of mattress affects your long-term blood flow and health.