(WETM) – With concerns of flu season, cleaning experts are recommending people to wash their bed sheets more often than usual.

The flu virus along with other viruses and strains of bacteria tend to stay active and live longer in hot and humid environments. Experts state that the flu virus can live 8 to 12 hours on bed sheets that are left uncleaned.

“If you know you are sick, definitely wash your sheets with hot water every day,” said Parima Ijaz, founder of Pure Parima, bedding products made with 100% cotton. “If not sick, once a week is more than enough with warm to cold water, and that should definitely help it.”

A common problem with washing bed sheets over and over again is a decrease in softness. The more the sheets move around and mix in the machine, the less soft spots there may be.

Thankfully, there is a solution to deal with both the flu virus and non-soft fabric. Parima recommends that people stay away from using dryer sheets or liquid softeners. These can leave a waxy residue and affect the softness of the fabric.

For more sustained softness, Parima also recommends using distilled white vinegar. A half a cup is more than enough in a rinse cycle and it is a natural way to keep bed sheets soft after every wash.