4 STEPS TO A BETTER NIGHT’S SLEEP
Do you suffer from allergies, nasal congestion, sore and itchy eyes, wheeziness and general lethargy? Your mattress, pillows and bed linen could be the culprits.
Even relatively new mattresses have the potential to be hotbeds of dead skin cells, sweat and allergy-inducing dust mites.
“We lose about half a kilo of skin and sweat in our mattresses each year,” says Professor Pete Smith, medical director of Allergy Medical in Brisbane.
“That is a breeding ground for dust mites – they love dark, warm, humid environments, which makes the mattress and your bed the perfect environment for them,” adds Hardeep Singh from The Sanitizers in NSW.
“Dust mites won’t bite you – it’s their urine and faeces that cause the problems. Dust mite allergies can affect you ou all year round, but they will become worse in the summer, when conditions are warmer and more humid.”
Arm yourself this sweaty season with these top tips
1 Have your mattress cleaned every three or so months by a reputable company that uses chemical-free, water-free, UV machinery. “UV light is the only thing that can kill the mites,” says Hardeep. “Be sure they are using a vacuum system, too, in order to remove all debris in the mattress.” 2 Always protect your mattress with a top quality, breathable mattress protector that at can be removed f for cleaning. “Wash all bed linen every week on a very hot wash,” advises Professor Smith. “Dust mites can survive a wash, so you need 50-60°C to destroy them.” Hang all bed linen on the line in direct sunlight, too. 3 Keep a dehumidifier in your room in the warmer months. “Dust mites can’t drink, so they rely on humidity for hydration,” explains Professor Smith. “When humidity is less than 40 per cent, they die.” 4 Air your mattress and pillows regularly by leaving the bed unmade – and in direct sunlight, if possible – for a few hours.