How To Keep Your Mattress Clean And Healthy From Dust Mites & Bed Bugs

Ahh…dust mites…bed bugs…mold…bacteria…who wouldn’t want all those things in their mattress?

In this article I’ll show you the best way that I’ve found to prevent all that gross stuff from invading your bed, along with the very best way to keep your mattress clean and sanitary.  Best of all, this particular product will help preserve the comfort layers of your mattress, and I’ll show you how by doing that, it actually prolongs the life of your bed.

Dust Mites

What exactly are “dust mites” anyway?

Dust mites are tiny, microscopic members of the arachnid family that thrive in large numbers and are generally found anywhere there’s house dust found in every home.  They feed on flakes of human skin, and generally love to hang out in and around your mattress where skin flakes are plentiful.

The prefer warm and humid environments and survive and multiply especially well in those types of environments.

They can cause allergies and asthma in many people due to a protein found in their waste particles (read: their poop).  A single dust mite produces about 20 waste droppings each day and to make matters worse, an unprotected mattress can contain anywhere from 100,000 to 10 million mites inside.  Yikes!

Most recent studies show that as much as 30% of the population are allergic to dust mite waste.  And for some people, the dust mite allergy may be the primary cause of wheezing, asthma, shortness of breath and other breathing difficulties.

Bed Bugs

Ugghhh….seriously, just writing about bed bugs grosses me out.

Most people have heard about bed bugs, but few people know very much about them.  For instance, anyone can get bed bugs, even in super clean environments.  That’s because a bed bug infestation has nothing to do with how clean or sanitary your home environment is.

They generally spread through luggage.  For example, lets say you live in an apartment.  And your neighbor goes on vacation to a foreign country and they happen to cross paths with a bed bug infestation somewhere.  They can actually carry bed bugs back home with them in their luggage, where they then infest their apartment, and then eventually work their way into yours.

This is what’s been happening in New York City, where they were having a pretty severe bed bug outbreak.  Major metropolitan cities are experiencing an increase of 30-50% from year to year.  In fact, household infestations have increased 1000% over the past 10 years!  Part of that is because they’ve become more and more resistant to various pesticides.

Bed bugs are parasites that are visible to the naked eye, however their presence can go unseen.  They feed on blood — but you can’t feel them because they inject an anesthetic into your skin while feeding.

They hang out in mattresses, box springs, headboards, frames and can also be found in the surrounding areas around the bed, like nightstands, curtains and other furniture.

If you have a bedbug infestation in your mattress, the general procedure is to destroy the mattress and have an exterminator come out and they’ll exterminate everything in sight.  It is NOT FUN and can often be quite traumatic for people.

Mold, Mildew, Bacteria, Fungal Spores

Your mattress acts like a gigantic sponge.  All those fibers and foams create the perfect environment for harboring mold, mildew, bacteria, fungal spores, and body fluids.

When we sleep we perspire, and we typically lose about 10oz of fluid per night.  Some of that is evaporated but a lot is absorbed right into the mattress.  And of course, that only helps foster an ideal environment for dust mites.

Another problem is that humidity and moisture accelerates the wear and tear of the top layers of foams and fibers of the mattress, which can lead to premature sagging.  To get a visual of this, imagine taking a piece of foam and holding it under running water.  It’s just gonna soak of tons of water.  That’s what your mattress does.

And because your mattress is so absorbent, the actual weight of a mattress can double over the course of ten years.  Problem is, you can’t launder or thoroughly clean your mattress.

Fortunately, there’s an easy fix for preventing your mattress from harboring dust mites, bed bugs, mold, milder and all that other gunk.

To The Rescue…The Protect-A-Bed AllerZip ProtectorProtect-A-Bed AllerZip Mattress Protector

I’ve check out and tried several mattress protectors, and none of them do everything that the AllerZip does.

The AllerZip is a very thin protector that takes the place of a mattress pad (or goes over one) and is completely waterproof without being plastic.  It works just like human skin does, air can pass through it but water doesn’t go through.

The top is made from a cotton terry cloth surface, and the bottom is the waterproof component called a “miracle membrane.”  These protectors really work, you can literally pour a cup of coffee on it and it just won’t pass through.

This is especially important if you have pets and they sleep in your bed.  1 in 3 pet owners allow their pets to sleep in the bed with them.  (Ceasar Milan doesn’t approve of this common practice, by the way…but that’s a different topic!)

The AllerZip is a full encasement protector, meaning it zips all the way around the entire mattress.  It also has a unique “bug lock,” which is a design around the zipper that prevents bed bugs from getting in or out through the zipper.

It also has an “allergen flap” behind the zipper to prevent allergens from getting through the zipper.

It’s listed as a Class 1 Medical device with the FDA, it’s tested to meet the Oeko Tex 100 Standard for harmful substances, and has earned the Good Housekeeping seal.

They’re machine washable in hot water, so you can sterilize it as often as you want, and it comes with a 10-year warranty against manufacturing defects.

To Summarize

The AllerZip protects your mattress from:

  • Dust Mites
  • Bed Bugs
  • Mold & Mildew
  • Bacteria
  • Body Moisture
  • Pet Dander
  • Allergens

It is:

  •  Breathable
  •  Waterproof
  •  Ultra absorbent
  •  Durable yet thin, like a sheet

And it will:

  •  Preserve the comfort layers of your mattress so it will last longer
  •  Fit snug to your mattress
  •  Provide peace of mind
  •  Save you money

The only drawback to this protector is that some people with sensitive hearing might find it “noisy” because of the cotton terry.  As an alternative, Protect-A-Bed makes an AllerZip with a “smooth” surface rather than terry for a more “quiet” option.  I haven’t tried that one yet, but I’m sure it works well.  I’ve known these guys for years and they make super high quality products.

Alright, so that’s it for my review of the AllerZip encasement by Protect-A-Bed.  As you may have guessed I highly recommend it.

Click here to shop for the AllerZip mattress protector

(photo credit: pond5.com)

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a referral fee at no additional cost to you. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I’ve used and tested personally.

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