You probably know that dust mites are tiny creatures that thrive in warm, moist environments. But did you know that your mattress might be the perfect place for them to call home? If you're experiencing allergies and have never changed your mattress, it might be time to invest in a new one that is less hospitable to dust mites.
The Sleep Foundation suggests replacing mattresses every six to eight years to reduce the risk of allergies. While this may sound like a lot of work, it is essential for your health and well-being.
So, let's see how your mattress impacts allergies and all the different types associated with mattresses.
Can Mattresses Cause Allergies or Worsen Existing Ones?
According to WebMD, mattresses can contribute to aggravating allergies or even causing them in some cases. Allergens such as dust mites and mould spores might accumulate in your mattress over time, leading to respiratory problems for those especially sensitive.
Furthermore, a mattress that is too soft or hard can cause poor sleeping posture, which may lead to long-term discomfort and disruption of sleep. In addition, mattresses may contain uncomfortable chemicals such as formaldehyde, latex or flame retardants which can trigger an allergic reaction in people with sensitive skin.
The main reasons why mattresses can cause allergies are the accumulation of dust mites, other allergenic materials, and certain chemical substances. While it is impossible to completely avoid these substances, reducing exposure to them can greatly improve your overall health and sleep quality.
Moreover, it is important to invest in a good quality mattress that provides proper support and ventilation to reduce the risk of allergies. It is also beneficial to keep your bedroom well-ventilated and clean it regularly to reduce allergens from accumulating in your mattress.
Ultimately, by taking some simple preventative steps, you can help to minimize the risk of allergies or worsening existing ones caused by your mattress.
What Are the Types of Allergies Associated With Mattresses?
So far, we've discussed the impact of mattresses on allergies. Now, look at all the different types of allergies associated with mattresses. The main causes of allergies associated with mattresses range from dust mites, bed bugs, mould and mildew spores, upholstery fabric fibres, and other airborne particles.
However, whatever the reason, a mattress can be an ideal environment for the growth of dust mites and other organisms. Dust mites, in particular, are tiny insects that hide in bedding, mattresses and box springs. They feed off human skin flakes/dead skin cells and can cause respiratory issues such as asthma, allergies and hay fever.
Let's take a look at some of the common mattress-related allergies:
Dust Mite Allergies
Dust mite allergy is a common condition and the primary cause of allergies related to mattresses. House dust mites are tiny insects that feed on house dust, and their droppings can trigger asthma attacks, allergic rhinitis, dust mite allergies, eczema and other allergies in people who are sensitive to them. Furthermore, dust mites thrive in warm, moist environments, like mattresses and bedding, making these home areas particularly prone to allergen buildup.
If you want to kill dust mites allergens at home, a mattress protector or encasement should be used to prevent allergens from settling deep within your mattress. Additionally, washing bedding in hot water every week and using air purifiers with HEPA filters can also help reduce levels of house dust mite allergy in the home.
Dust mites and other allergens can often be found in old or damp mattresses, releasing spores that trigger an allergic reaction for those with mould allergies. Symptoms of a mould allergy typically include coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes and throat, and difficulty breathing.
Moreover, mould can cause asthma attacks and worsen existing respiratory issues. If you suffer from a mould allergy, it is important to identify the source of the problem so that appropriate measures can be taken to protect your health.
The best way to reduce the risk of exposure to mould allergens in your mattress is to change it regularly - experts recommend replacing mattresses every 6-8 years. Additionally, consider investing in mattress covers to keep dust mites and mould away.
However, while purchasing a new mattress may not be within the budget, there are some steps allergy sufferers can take to reduce mould in their existing mattress and make it less of an allergy trigger.
For instance, regularly vacuuming or steam-cleaning the mattress helps to remove dust mites and other allergens, as well as to circulate air that can help prevent mould growth. Additionally, it is important to ensure your mattress remains dry and aired out, so avoid storing items (such as bedding or clothing) underneath the mattress that may contain moisture.
Chemical sensitivities are a growing concern, particularly when it comes to mattresses. Many mattresses are made with synthetic materials that can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other potentially hazardous substances.
Ultimately, these chemicals can cause various adverse health effects, such as headaches, respiratory issues, skin irritation, and more serious conditions like cancer. Those with chemical sensitivities must find mattresses with natural, non-toxic materials such as organic cotton and all-natural latex.
Additionally, opting for mattress covers or encasements made from natural materials can help prevent the release of VOCs and other chemicals from the mattress. These steps will help reduce exposure to potentially hazardous substances and ensure the health and safety of allergy sufferers.
Latex is a popular choice for mattress manufacturing because it offers a high degree of resilience and breathability that can improve sleep quality. However, some people may have an allergy to synthetic latex, which can lead to uncomfortable symptoms such as itchy eyes and skin rashes.
If you suspect that you may have a synthetic latex allergy, you must consult your healthcare provider and get tested. To minimize the risk of an allergic reaction, people with latex allergies should look for mattresses made from memory foam, as these materials are less likely to trigger an allergic reaction.
Additionally, natural fibre covers such as cotton, wool and silk can help reduce the risk of exposure and provide a more comfortable sleeping environment for allergy sufferers.
Pet dander is one of the most common triggers of allergies. It is a microscopic particle found in mattress fibres and fabrics and can cause allergic reactions in many people. These allergens can become airborne easily, especially when disturbed during sleep or when someone sits on a mattress.
To reduce the amount of pet dander in your home, it's important to keep your mattress clean. Vacuum it regularly and use a hypoallergenic cover to limit the amount of dander that accumulates.
Deep cleaning with a professional service can also help remove it from your mattress, relieving those suffering from allergies. Lastly, keeping pets off furniture and bedding can help reduce its spread in the home.
How Can You Prevent Allergies From Your Mattress?
While it is impossible to eliminate all allergies from your mattress, there are several steps you can take to reduce their prevalence and severity. From the moment you purchase your mattress to when you eventually replace it, there are a few strategies to help keep it as allergen-free as possible.
Here are a few tips to keep allergies under control:
Choose a Hypoallergenic Mattress
First, if you want to prevent allergies from your mattress, make sure you purchase a hypoallergenic mattress. Hypoallergenic mattresses, like memory foam mattresses, are designed to reduce exposure to dust mites and other allergens and irritants that can cause allergic reactions.
Memory foam mattresses typically feature a solid block type that prevents microscopic particles from entering the material. And some types of hypoallergenic mattresses, like memory foam mattresses, even contain anti-microbial agents that can help eliminate dust mites and other allergens on contact.
The important thing to remember when shopping for hypoallergenic mattresses is that they don't come in sizes that fit all designs – so make sure you choose the right mattress for your specific needs. If you suffer from allergies, opt for all-natural hypoallergenic mattresses like memory foam mattresses or ones with additional dust mite barriers and anti-microbial protection.
Get a Mattress Protector
A mattress protector is important for anyone looking to prevent allergies from their mattress. It works by blocking dust mites and other allergens, including pollen and pet dander, that can collect on the surface of your mattress.
Furthermore, the material used in many protectors is usually polyester or another water-resistant material that can shield against any liquids and sweat. This can help keep your mattress free from mould and mildew, which may trigger allergies in some people.
When cleaning your mattress regularly to prevent allergies, a few simple steps can go a long way. First and foremost, you should vacuum your mattress every 3-6 months with the upholstery attachment of your vacuum cleaner. This will help to remove any dust mites or other allergens that may have become embedded in your mattress over time.
In addition, it is also a good idea to spot-clean your mattress with a mild cleaning agent every 6 months or so. This will help remove any stains and odours that may have built up over time while also killing off any bacteria lurking on your mattress's surface. Doing this regularly ensures that your mattress remains as allergen-free as possible and that you are getting the best night's sleep possible.
Keep It in an Area With Good Ventilation
Ventilation plays a key role in preventing allergies from your mattress. By keeping it in an area with good ventilation, you can help reduce your exposure to allergens like dust mites and pet dander that may be present in the air.
When it comes to ventilation, the more open space around your bed, the better. Opt for a room with large windows to allow for air circulation. Keep any other furniture away from the bed frame, and avoid blocking off vents or not having any at all.
Additionally, it's important to regularly open your windows and use exhaust fans in humid climates, as moisture can collect on mattresses and increase the growth of allergens.
Use Certified Organic Cotton Linens or Bedding
Certified Organic Cotton is grown without toxic pesticides and fertilizers, leaving a residue on traditional cotton fabrics that can lead to allergic reactions. It also helps keep allergens such as dust mites and pet dander at bay by creating an impermeable barrier between you and your mattress.
Additionally, organic cotton is softer and more breathable than conventional fabrics, so you can sleep soundly without any added irritants. Organic linens are also naturally hypoallergenic, making them ideal for those with allergies or asthma. Not only do they provide the ultimate comfort, but they also help protect your mattress from allergens.
Use a Dehumidifier or Air Purifier
Using a dehumidifier or air purifier is one of the most effective ways to prevent allergies from your mattress. A dehumidifier removes excess moisture from the air and helps reduce dust mites, mould, and bacteria levels in your bedroom.
In addition to a dehumidifier, an air purifier can filter out pollen and other allergens from your indoor air. Both dehumidifiers and air purifiers are available in various sizes to suit any size room. When using either device, change the filters regularly to ensure they work effectively.
What Are the Signs of an Allergic Reaction Related to Mattresses?
According to Earth911, an average mattress contains as many as 10 million dust mites and their waste. This can cause serious allergic reactions in people with allergies or asthma.
Furthermore, many mattresses, like natural latex mattresses, contain materials that can trigger an allergic reaction, such as latex, foam and synthetic materials. These materials can also trap dust mites and their waste, meaning they can remain in a mattress even after extensive vacuuming or cleaning.
While the symptoms of an allergic reaction related to mattresses can vary, the most common signs are
If you are experiencing these symptoms, it is important to consider allergen sources in your home, including the mattress. Even though mattresses can't be 100% free from allergens, there are steps you can take to reduce them.
These include encasing the mattress with an anti-allergy cover and regularly vacuuming it to remove any dust mites or debris. Additionally, washing bedding regularly, using hypoallergenic detergent, and avoiding feather pillows and quilts can help reduce exposure to allergens.
If all else fails and your symptoms persist, consider replacing your natural latex mattresses with an allergen-resistant one. Such mattresses are designed to prevent dust mites and other allergens from entering and infesting the mattress, providing a better night's rest.
By taking these steps, you can help reduce your risk of exposure to dust mite allergy etc. and improve your quality of life.
Now that you know how your mattress can impact allergies let's answer some of the frequently asked questions.
Can My Mattress Cause Allergies?
Yes, there are good chances of your old mattress causing allergies. Aside from dust mites, your mattress may cause allergic reactions to mould, mildew, etc.
How Do I Know if My Mattress Has Dust Mites?
While you cannot see dust mites or dust mite feces on your mattress, you may have an allergic reaction due to them. These allergic reactions are a common indication of dust mites in your mattress.
Is Memory Foam Good for Allergies?
Memory foam, unlike latex mattresses, is made from hypoallergenic material. This means that memory foam inhibits the presence of dust mites and the allergies caused.
All in all, while it might be a little uncomfortable to think about, your mattress can definitely have an impact on your allergies. From dust mites to allergens, getting a new mattress or using an anti-allergy cover could improve your symptoms. So if you're struggling with allergies, don't forget to check out what's happening in your bed!
Always remember good sleep is essential to good health, so take the time to ensure you have a mattress that won't give you any unwanted visitors. Crafted Beds is the perfect place to find a mattress that will help alleviate your allergies.
Our mattresses are made with anti-allergy materials designed to reduce dust mite populations and keep allergens from accumulating in your bed. So, shop from Crafted Beds today to find the perfect mattress for your allergy-free sleep!