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How to Keep your Bed Pillows Allergen-free

by Amanda Mears

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Bed pillows can harbor allergens

The dust mites that live in your bed pillows are one of the leading causes of irritation for people with allergies. Since you spend approximately eight hours of your day with your head on a pillow, they are often one of the most pervasive and enduring allergy triggers that can cause sneezing, itchy eyes and a runny nose. It's nearly impossible to rid your home of all allergy-causing dust and pollens, but you can fight back against these perilous bed dwellers by making sure your bed pillow is properly cleaned and cared for. Follow these steps and learn how to keep your bed pillows allergen-free.

Allergen-free Pillows:

  1. Take preventative measures: The easiest way to keep your bedding free of unwanted dust mites and dust mite waste is to use a filter in your bedroom. Look for portable HEPA filters that will trap dust and other fine particles in the air that can end up on a bed pillow.

  2. Invest in hypoallergenic pillows: Designed to be cleaned regularly, hypoallergenic pillows are made from materials that won't break down with frequent washing. They also help prohibit the growth of bacteria and other matter that attracts dust mites. Depending on your preference, you can choose hypoallergenic pillows made from soft polyester, contouring latex foam or hypoallergenic down alternative. Pop these pillows in the wash once a week and you'll be breathing easier.

  3. Vacuum pillows daily: In addition to washing your bed pillows, you'll want to vacuum them daily. The best vacuum cleaner for allergy and asthma sufferers is one with a HEPA filter that works like an air filtration system to trap the offending dust, rather than releasing it back into the air. By vacuuming your pillows daily, you can make each night more sleep conducive.

  4. Use pillow covers: Once your bed pillows are cleaned, place them in a special zippered pillowcase. These pillowcases can serve as a barrier between allergens and your pillow, blocking dust mites from embedding themselves in the fibers of your pillow. Pillow covers specially made to be hypoallergenic typically have smaller holes that block out more dust than standard pillowcases; look for these if you suffer from severe allergies.

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