Anti-Allergy Bedding Buying Guide

Anti-Allergy Bedding Buying Guide

Why do I need Anti-Allergy bedding?

Your bed could be home to over 10 million dust mites; potent triggers of conditions such as asthma, eczema and other respiratory conditions. These unwelcome guests can bring on allergy symptoms making for a very unpleasant, and often disturbed, night’s sleep. Household insecticides have no effect on dust mites, your best course of action is to make your bed inhospitable to them. You can do this by purchasing anti-allergy bedding, or by encasing your existing bedding in specialist anti-allergy encasements. You could also consider purchasing an anti-allergy mattress.

What am I allergic to?

Although we use the term “dust mite allergy”, the mite itself is not what you are allergic to. Instead it is the faeces that the dust mite leaves behind. Their faeces contain proteins which can produce negative reactions in people, including sneezing, coughing, itching, wheezing and streaming eyes. Dust mites do not bite, cannot spread diseases, and do not live on people. They are only harmful to those who develop an allergy to them. Dustmites are microscopic in size so it is easy to assume your bed is mite-free.

What’s the difference between non-allergenic, hypoallergenic and anti-allergy?

  • Non-allergenic means that the item itself shouldn’t cause an allergic reaction, but triggers such as dust mites may still be present.
  • Hypoallergenic means that there is a decreased chance of allergic reaction
  • Anti-allergy means the item is intended to prevent or minimise an allergic reaction.

Do I need new bedding?

To fight dust mites, your best option is to replace your bedding with specialist anti-allergy bedding. Anti-allergy bedding can either contain an active ingredient to denature dust mites, or have a special casing that dust mites cannot penetrate. If your existing bedding isn’t anti-allergy and you’re reluctant to replace it, you can improve its allergy protection by using anti-allergy encasements. These encasements fit over your existing pillow, duvet and mattress and trap allergens inside.

What do I need to make my bed allergy friendly?

It’s important to make your whole bed an allergy friendly haven. This may involve replacing your pillows, duvet, sheets and mattress or purchasing specialist encasements to improve the anti-allergy effectiveness of your existing bedding.

Pillows & Duvets for allergy sufferers

Anti-allergy pillows and duvets can be split into two groups, those that contain an active ingredient to denature dust mites and those made with a casing impenetrable to dust mites. Both options will offer a good level of protection and will stop the growth of dust mites in your pillow and duvet. Furthermore, some pillow and duvet fillings, such as wool and silk, are naturally resistant to dust mites. Alternatively, if you’d prefer to keep your existing pillow and duvet, you can purchase anti-allergy encasements; these will fully encase your pillow and duvet trapping allergens inside.

Bed Linen for allergy sufferers

When purchasing bed sheets it’s best to choose something that offers specialist anti-allergy protection, these sheets will contain an active ingredient to denature dust mites or will be made from something naturally resistant to dust mites such as silk. Alternatively choose sheets that can be washed regularly at 60oC, this is the temperature needed to kill dust mites, or use a laundry additive such as Fabri-Cleanse to remove allergens at lower temperatures.

Mattress Protection for allergy sufferers

You can protect yourself from the allergens in your mattress by using an anti-allergy mattress protector or mattress encasement. An anti-allergy mattress protector will contain an anti-allergy agent to protect you from dust mites in the top layer of your mattress. For better protection an anti-allergy mattress encasement will fully encase your mattress, stopping allergens from exiting or entering any part of your mattress. The majority of mattress encasements are made from a fabric impenetrable to dust mites and other allergens. Anti-Allergy Pillow Protectors and Pillow Encasements are also available.

Mattresses for allergy sufferers

Brands including Sealy and Healthbeds have started to produce hypo-allergenic mattresses. Similarly to anti-allergy bedding, your new mattress will have been treated with an agent to denature dust mites. If you’re considering purchasing a new mattress, choosing an anti-allergy option will stop the growth of dust mites in the first place.

Can Anti-Allergy bedding make my bed more eczema friendly?

When choosing bedding for eczema sufferers, it is very important that it is highly breathable bedding. Bedding that creates a cleaner, drier and smoother environment, will ease irritation on your skin, creating a better night’s sleep. For example our DermaTherapy bedding is made from a tightly woven fabric which creates a smoother layer that will pull less and cause less friction on skin. It is also highly breathable and will draw moisture from the skin.

When things heat up in the bedroom

When things heat up in the bedroom

Playing it cool in the bedroom could be the secret of a happy love life.

As Valentine’s Day approaches and attention (inevitably) turns to romance, Sammy Margo, author of The Good Sleep Guide and The Good Sleep Guide For Kids and sleep expert for SlumberSlumber, warns that turning up the heat in the bedroom can be a passion killer.

She says that bedroom temperature is one of the most frequent causes of bed-time friction, often ruining the chances of getting a good night’s sleep …. as well as cooling thoughts of romance.

“The idea that some like it hot and some don’t is pretty well guaranteed to raise a smile,” she says, “but this is a serious issue. Sleep-related problems can often be the cause of relationship breakdown. Tackling temperature issues could help keep a couple together.

“Men and women often have quite different bedroom needs with men generally preferring a cooler bedroom. Typically women start off feeling cold when they get into bed but rapidly get too hot. The professional advice is that the bedroom should ideally be between 16˚ and 18˚ Centigrade. That temperature will probably be a little cooler than your living room, but it’s ideally suited to induce a good night’s sleep. It’s a little appreciated fact that our bodies need to cool down in order to let us fall asleep easily.

“All too often the bedroom turns into a battleground with one shivering partner clutching a hot water bottle while the other throws open the windows. The recent spate of near-Arctic conditions has highlighted the problem in many homes!

“Happily there are simple ways to take the heat out of the situation. The first step towards restoring bedroom harmony is to recognize that temperature could be a problem, then discuss your preferences so that you can arrive at a solution that suits you both.”

It could be that simply turning down the radiator by a few degrees will save money as well as the relationship, but Sammy believes that what goes on the bed may be just as important.  She says, “Most of us welcomed the arrival of the duvet with open arms. It was a release from old fashioned bed-making and a delightfully comfy alternative to old fashioned sheets, blankets and eiderdowns. Maybe we have all got just a little too lazy and complacent however, for we often expect one weight of duvet to suit whatever the weather. We also tend to think that the duvet we bought many years ago will last for ever! Everyone ought to change duvet weights in tune with the changing seasons and renew their bedding periodically.”

Grandmother’s advice on counting sheep as a way of inducing sleep may be out of date but, according to Sammy, you can still count on sheep’s wool.

She says, “While technological advances in fabric and filling have made the duvet ever more versatile, light and comfortable to use, I would put in a word for good, old fashioned wool, increasingly used as the natural filling for duvets. Wool duvets were once very much a luxury item but they are now very affordable.

“Wool is an excellent fabric and particularly suitable for bedding. It is lightweight but because of its heat-regulating qualities will keep you warm in cold weather and cool in hot weather – factors which should resolve the temperature control problems on both parties! Research has also demonstrated that wool duvets can actually reduce your heart rate, leading to more restful sleep. Wool is also water repellent, useful for spills and also for wicking moisture away from your body, which helps keep the body at a more even temperature. It is a natural flame retardant, having a low burning rate so it doesn’t need to be treated with chemicals, and it doesn’t get dirty easily. Washable wool fabric makes it easier to care for too.”

How To Enjoy A Good Night’s Sleep

How To Enjoy A Good Night’s Sleep

We spend a third of our lives sleeping, yet within our lifetimes most people will experience problems with sleeping at some stage. So if you want a good night’s sleep, here are our 10 top tips to getting more sleep and waking up refreshed.

Top Tips for Sleep:

  1. Pillow and Duvet

    Make sure you have the correct pillow and duvet to provide support and comfort. Natural and synthetic options exist to offer exceptionally light, soft and breathable solutions which are practical and long lasting. To find out how to choose the perfect pillow and duvet, why not read our buying guide and see if you can enjoy the good nights sleep you’ve always dreamed about.
  2. Sleep Routine

    Create a sleep routine by going to bed, and getting up at similar times each day.  Our Lumie Bodyclocks can help to achieve the perfect sleep routine. Get into a routine or bed time habit. A simple routine will subconsciously help your body to prepare for sleep. Take a warm bath, lower the lights before bedtime and allow adequate time to relax before bed. Leave any symbols of worry out of the bedroom.Diet and medication

  3. Lifestyle

    Food and medicine can alter the balance of chemicals in your body, which can impact upon how wakeful or drowsy you feel. Avoid caffeine in the hours before bed, and ideally only drink caffeinated drinks in the morning. Also avoid alcohol and cigarettes and try vitamin supplements and herbal teas instead. You should also increase your water intake – generally recommended minimum of 2 litres per day. If you have a large meal in the evening, allow plenty of time for your digestive process to start, allowing several hours after eating before you go to bed.

  4. Exercise

    Do exercise, but not right before bedtime. Exercise can have a stimulating effect which can prevent you falling asleep, so leave two or three hours between your work out and going to bed. Psychology has shown that mental exercise can help to clear the mind of any fears or anxieties, so practice deep breathing exercises or progressive muscle relaxation.

  5. Atmosphere

    Temperature in your bedroom is important. Not too cold, nor too warm and if in doubt, go for cooler rather than warmer.  Our temperature regulating wool duvets can help to keep you at the optimum temperature throughout the night.

Don’t worry!

If you can’t fall asleep, or do wake in the night and don’t drop off to sleep again straight away, try not to worry about it. There are few things that will prevent you sleeping more, than anxiety about not getting enough sleep. If you can’t get right back to sleep, then after about half an hour, get out of bed and do something non stimulating and boring in a low light until you feel sleepy again.

If sleep problems persist you may consider lifestyle changes. Change your working hours or manage your time more effectively. Be realistic about deadlines and get help or delegate tasks if possible. Create time for yourself to relax after work each day and unwind before sleep.

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