How Does Allergy-Proof Bedding Work?
When people are allergic to dust mites, allergy symptoms are often worse at night. Dust mites live within dust and feed on skin cells that we regularly shed. Given the amount of time we spend in our beds, our beds tend to hold relatively high volumes of these skin cells and are therefore a target for dust mites. Proteins from dust mite decay can trigger allergic reactions that are similar to other types of allergic reactions, causing sneezing, itchiness, runny nose, watery eyes, and cough. As with many other allergens, dust mites can also lead to asthma.
Washing sheets regularly is one way to reduce the dust mite allergies that may occur at night. Keeping sheets clean and frequently ridding them of both the skin cells that dust mites consume and of the dust mites themselves can minimize the levels of the protein that causes the immune system to react. However, there is also bedding that is designed to prevent allergic reactions related to dust mites.
Allergy-proof bedding is covered in an extremely tightly woven material, which helps to prevent allergies in two key ways. First, it prevents the allergens that are already inside parts of the bed – like the mattress and pillows – from getting out to where they will expose people. Second, it prevents dead skin cells from getting inside the bedding so that dust mites do not have these cells to feed on, which means they starve and fail to reproduce.
There are several brands of bedding on the market that claim that their products are allergy-proof. While the material itself is not particularly important for conferring the anti-allergy benefits, it is important that the fabric have very tiny pores, six or fewer microns in diameter. These pieces of bedding should be used on items that you do not regularly wash – such as mattresses, pillows, box springs, and duvets or comforters.
It is important to note that allergy-proof bedding is most effective for preventing allergies associated with dust mites. Allergies associated with other allergens, such as pollen, will not be minimized to the same extent because other allergens do not require something unique to your bedding to live and reproduce. It is therefore good practice to regularly wash bedding to rid it of any and all allergens, even if you do use allergy-proof sheets and covers.