Can Fleas Live in a Memory Foam Mattress? How To Get Rid of Them?

Are you tired of those itchy flea bites on your skin? Does this itching increase every time you sit on your bed. Your pet may be scratching himself all the time too. All these are sure shot signs that you have a full-blown flea problem.

There is nothing worse than finding a flea in the cosy, intimate space of your bed. If you are in this unfortunate situation of sharing your sleeping space with fleas, take comfort in the thought that they can be easily removed from your bed or mattress.

Yes! It would be best if you took action immediately as fleas breed at an alarming rate, and once they start laying eggs, it becomes more difficult to get rid of them.

Do Fleas Get into Memory Foam Mattresses?

A common question that arises in the mind of many people is- Can fleas infest my memory foam mattress? 

Fleas can be very annoying. Many people are sadly mistaken if they associate them with pets only. Fleas may be found anywhere in your home. Be it the oriental carpet, the beautiful rug, or even your comfy mattress!

Fleas are less interested in the actual mattress and more so in the people sleeping on it. The fleas often get mistaken by bed bugs and vice versa. So, you need to confirm whether your mattress and bed have been infested with fleas or bed bugs before you start the treatment.

Fleas or Bedbugs Mix-up

If you notice a group of small dots on your skin, they could either be due to bed-bug or flea bites. It isn’t easy to notice the difference between the first instance.

However, we have compiled a few noticeable differences to help you, check below:

  1. Bedbug bites are mostly on the upper half of your body, like the face, neck, and arms, while the flea bites are seen on the lower half of your body like the elbows, knees, legs, and other skin folds. 
  2. Flea bites cause intense itching and redness compared to bed bugs.
  3. Fleas on the mattress look similar to bed bugs but are smaller in size. The average size of a flea is around 3.3 mm only. They are oval and longer than bed bugs. Bed bugs are seed-shaped and reddish-brown. 

Can Fleas Live in A Memory Foam Mattress?

Fleas can live anywhere, but the chances of them getting into your memory foam mattress are less as the material is quite dense. Memory foam is considered a cleaner and healthier option than other materials.

However, nothing can stop these parasites from living on the surface of the mattress. The problem aggravates in homes where pets are kept. Fleas love the fur of animals.

Thus, pets sleeping on your bed may become the primary source of flea infestation in your bed.

What Are the Signs That There Are Fleas in Your Memory Foam Mattress or Bed?

Fleas can hide in your bed or on your mattress and bite you when sound asleep. Here are the potential signs that show their presence in your beddings:

  • If you see tiny black-pepper-like grains on your mattress, it is probably flea-dirt or flea-faeces. Take a wet tissue and scrub the dirt. If it leaves a reddish colour on the mattress or the tissue, there are fleas in your mattress.
  • Flea-bite marks are also a prominent sign of fleas on your mattress. Please do not confuse them with bedbug bite marks. Flea bite marks are smaller and look more like acne or pimples.
  • The bedbug bite marks have slight swelling than flea marks on your body. Also, while bedbug bite marks grow in size within 24 to 48 hours, there is no change in the bite marks caused by fleas.

How To Get Rid of Fleas from Memory Foam Mattresses?

Once you are sure that your mattress has been infested with fleas, you need to act fast as these pests reproduce very quickly and can hide in tiny crooks and seams of the mattress.

To begin with, remove the bed covers, pillow covers, and bed sheets from your mattress. Use one of the following methods to get rid of them as soon as possible.

1. Vacuuming

The Lightweight handheld Mattress vacuum cleaner is an effective solution for cleaning mattresses, furniture, couches, and more while getting rid of these unwanted guests. 

Required Items:

Procedure [Step by Step]

  • Strip the mattress of all sheets and bedding and wash them in hot soapy water separately. 
  • Now, place the mattress on a flat and hard surface and vacuum it two to three times. Ensure that you move it slowly to reach all the seams and edges thoroughly. 
  • Exert a bit of pressure while using on the seams of the mattress.
  • Turn the mattress upside down and vacuum the underside as well. 
  • After vacuuming, take care not to dispose of the dust bag in the vacuum cleaner trash bin inside the house. This is because fleas are good jumpers and may jump off the trash bin and hide somewhere in your home. 

Pro Tip: Vacuum cleaners remove the fleas but do not kill them. So, dispose of the bag far away.

2. Homemade Spray

This is a natural and cost-effective method. The ingredients can be easily found either in your kitchen or nearby stores. You can mix any listed ingredients with water and essential oils to make your cleaning sprays.

Required Items:


  • Mix one cup of water with one cup of white vinegar. (White vinegar is acidic and kills fleas and other pests). 
  • You can add citrus or other essential oils (Peppermint essential oil has insecticidal properties and is effective in repelling fleas). These oils make the mixture even more powerful. 
  • Pour this solution into a spray bottle and spray on the mattress and the corners of your bed. Leave it for a few hours to get maximum benefit.

Alternatively, buy one of these products online and get rid of the fleas for good.

3. Diatomaceous earth

Diatomaceous earth is harmless to humans and pets but lethal for fleas. It only takes a couple of hours for the fleas to be killed when they come in contact with it.

Food grade Diatomaceous earth proves very useful in getting rid of these tiny creatures. It is safe and non-toxic and completely wipes out the flea population within a few days.

Required Items:


  • Sprinkle the mattress liberally with food-grade diatomaceous earth.
  • Cover the mattress with a mattress cover to seal it up.
  • Leave the mattress for a few days.
  • Remove the mattress cover and vacuum the mattress properly to remove all the fleas.
  • Wash the mattress cover in hot water to disinfect it.

4. Flea Spray

Some essential oil blended sprays in the market are completely safe for the home. These sprays contain EPA-approved essential oils, lemongrass, and powerful pest fighting ingredients that have a long-lasting effect.

Required Items:


  • Remove the sheets and bed linen and spray it across the top of the mattress. 
  • Please leave it to dry for a few hours. 
  • Turn the mattress over and spray on the other side as well. 
  • Vacuum the mattress to get rid of these annoying insects.
  • Steam Cleaning – Steam cleaning is a proven and tested method of killing adult fleas, flea eggs, flea larvae, and pupae living in and on the mattress.

Treat your pets for fleas

Pets frequently scratching themselves is a clear indication of flea infestation. They are the primary carrier of fleas in your home.

If you have pets, ensure that they do not have fleas, as they can become a super spreader of fleas within no time.

There are chances that your pet spends some time on your bed and can easily infest the bed and mattress.

Final Words:

Fleas are usually not found in your bed or bedding. If you observe fleas in your bed or on your mattress, they were most probably dislodged from a pet or due to negligence in cleaning for a long time.

If you are struggling with a full-blown flea infestation, or suspect you have fleas in your bed, try one of the above methods immediately, as the problem can quickly go out of hand.

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