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Choosing Sheets

choosing sheets

Choosing Sheets for a Comfortable Fit.

If you are using a hospital bed, or are considering getting a hospital bed at home, what should you do about choosing sheets for the mattress?

Hospital bed mattresses are not the same size as a king size, queen size, full, or twin- size mattresses. Generally, a hospital bed mattress will measure 36 inches wide x 80 inches long. Some mattresses can be extended to 84 inches of sleep surface. There are wider mattresses for bariatric hospital beds, however. Before getting sheets, determine the mattress measurements.

You will soon find that twin sheets won’t fit a twin hospital mattress, however.  A twin-size regular bed mattress measures 39 x 75 inches typically.

You will have to use a twin XL sheet to fit a hospital bed mattress. They may also be called extended twin or extra-long twin.

Fitted for Hospital Bed Sheets

The measurement of the fitted sheet is most critical for fit on the mattress and comfort for caregiver and patient. It is impossible to stretch the fitted sheet if it’s too short. Using a fitted sheet that is too long means that it will be difficult to tuck in under the mattress on a hospital bed. Any sheet that is too long and drops to the floor can cause a trip hazard for everyone.

A twin extra-long fitted sheet commonly measures 39 inches wide x 80 inches long. Depth of the mattress also determines the fit of a fitted sheet. Most hospital bed mattresses have a depth of 6 inches, but there are some that are even thicker.

A gel cover or a foam topper over the mattress on the hospital bed increases the depth of the mattress, and you will need a deeper corner or pocket on the fitted sheet. A good foam topper can create additional two or more inches of depth to account for when placing a fitted sheet on your mattress.

Before selecting your sheets, it is important to know the depth of the mattress, plus the gel cover or foam topper. Below are common mattress depth dimensions from a sheet manufacturer to use as a guide.

Standard = 7 to 9 inches
Deep = 10 to 15 inches

Add more to account for the increased depth of a foam topper. Check the measurements of the mattress and topper together.
If you want to save some money on sheets, then you might choose to use a fitted sheet that is a twin XL with a flat sheet that is a twin full sheet. A standard twin flat sheet (typically 66 x 96 inches) or full flat sheet (typically 81 x 96 inches) will fit the extra- long bed as the top flat sheet. These could be chosen in coordinating solid colors, or coordinating patterns and colors. No one will guess that they did not come as a set from the store.

Where can you buy twin XL when choosing sheets? Most stores that carry bedding will carry a variety of sheet sizes year around. I can usually find a good selection of twin XL sheets in the early fall of the year when shoppers are looking for sheets for dormitory beds or kids’ beds before school begins.

So, the measurements of the hospital bed mattress, plus the depth of any topper on the mattress, are what you need to determine the sizes of the sheets you need.

Choosing sheets that really fit the bed will make bed-making easier.

11 thoughts on “Choosing Sheets

  1. Thank you so much for the information on hospital bed sizes and what dimensions to look for when linen shopping. I’m half the country from my mom but wanted to get her sheets for her newly arriving hospital bed. Your information, and tips, about sheets was so helpful. I appreciate your efforts to provide this information on a public site. You saved my day!

  2. Hey Sally,
    Thanks for visiting us at Caregiver-Aid. I’m sorry but we don’t sell sheets of any kind.
    You might try Elder Depot. They may have what you need.

  3. Thank you for the information; however, I’m wanting to buy a few of the – usually white now – (but used to be white with blue stripes horizontally on one end). I believe they are cotton. Is there a chance you could help me with that request?
    I would appreciate it very much! Thank you for your time.

    Sally Nixon

  4. My husband has terminal cancer. Hospice just brought his hospital bed. I live in the U.S. and once a month the hospitals around here have linen sales. You can get sheets, blankets, pillow cases, bed pads, draw sheets, towels, hospital gowns etc. for literally pennies on the dollar. They are clean and freshly laundered. Towels are 10 for $1.00. Sheets are 25 cents. Thin blankets $1.00 , Thick blankets and bed spreads are $2. They give away for free, the blankets that have a small stain on them, to use as pet blankets. They also sell/ make an offer on items that patients left in their rooms and never came back for. Call your local hospitals!!

  5. Hi, are hosptial bed sized sheets available in a high thread count to eliminate pilling?

  6. Hello Martha,
    Thanks for your question.
    Locating hospital sheets is getting easier as more “baby-boomers” reach retirement age and older. The simplest way is to just search online for “Hospital Sheets” or “Hospital Linen”
    I found there is a large selection at Amazon and Walmart. Even Ebay has them. If you want to find hospital sheets close to where you live, you and add the words “near me” to your search to find suppliers close by. Like this –
    Hospital sheets near me

    That should display any local suppliers that are close to where you live.

    I hope this helps.

  7. Please can you advise me where I can buy Hoapital Linen

  8. Well, U.S. is measured in inches and U.K. is measured in centimeters. And here at Caregiver-Aid we do not sell sheets U.S. or U.K.

  9. Please state if US sizes or UK sizes thank you.

  10. It seems to me that is American sizes which seems different to UK sizes ,fortunately I hope they will bring me one English size one.

  11. Thank you. Very helpful and specific info for a new hospital bed consumer like me!

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