Sleeping With The Enemy (Hayfever): How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep During Allergy Season
The first sign for me that hayfever season has arrived is when I wake up one morning sneezing. I never really thought about this before, but once I did, I realised that I probably needed to make some changes in the bedroom. Up to this I’d been thinking about making my bedroom pretty, but not an allergy-free zone. There’s no point in having pretty bedding if you are sneezing all over it now is there?:
So first things first, the flowers had to go! I love my fresh flower deliveries, but eliminating exposure to pollen in the bedroom is a must for a good night’s sleep if you suffer from allergies, so bye bye bouquets. Flowers in the bedroom also increases humidity, a condition in which dust-mites thrive. And dust mites are an even bigger enemy than pollen to a good night’s sleep, a topic I’ll get back to later …
Next up, my bedding itself. It was the company Sleepy People, who sell all kinds of bedding and bedlinen sets, who asked me in the first place if I’d like to write a post on the topic of sleep, so I turned to them to see what kind of anti-allergy bedding they offered. Quite a lot it turns out, from mattress toppers and protectors to pillows and duvets. Inside their pretty covers, my own duvet and pillows were probably harbouring tons of invisible allergens that were contributing to my waking up sneezing, so I replaced them, and my mattress protector, with these Anti-Allergy bedding options from Sleepy People.
I said I’d return to the topic of the dust mite. Well, brace yourselves – apparently the average bed has anything between 10,000 and two million of the little mites, which in turn produce up to 40 million droppings a day. Of course these are microscopic, but millions of people are allergic to them, so having a barrier between yourself and them is advisable!
I’m going to spare you an image of the dust mite – if you really want to see one, check out the dust mite wikipedia entry – I’ll share a picture of my new anti-allergy mattress protector on my bed instead:
With my anti-allergy bedding I feel I’m suitably protected from allergens, and I must say I’ve not woken up sneezing since swapping over to them. I’ve done a bit more research on how to ensure a good night’s sleep during allergy season (which begins mid-May, when the pollen count starts to rise, and humidity and temperature levels increase, which in turn increases dust mites) and so here are my findings:
How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep During Allergy Season:
- Don’t sleep with the windows open – the cool breeze might be nice, but brings with it pollen, which will make you sneeze.
- Have a shower and wash hair before bed to get rid of any pollen on your skin and hair.
- Bedding should be anti-allergy, with a good mattress and pillow protectors to offer protection against bacteria and dust-mites.
- Wash bedding regularly at 60º – but dry indoors to avoid pollen falling on it.
- Fold back covers during the day to air and cool the bed and decrease humidity, thus making it a less desirable environment for dust mites.
- Good housekeeping – dust and wipe down skirting boards and surfaces in the bedroom with a damp cloth to remove pollen and dust that has fallen.
- Avoid alcohol – this lowers your immune system and makes allergies worse.
- A smear of coconut oil on the nostrils before bed will act as a barrier to pollen, if there is any left of course after following all the tips above!
I’ve learnt that with bedding, as with people, what’s inside is just as important as what’s on the outside. Thanks to my new anti-allergy bedding I’ve been getting better sleep and waking up a much nicer person because of it too (allergies make you grumpy!).
If you have any other tips do let me know in the comments below. And thanks to Sleepy People for making my nights a bit more peaceful with its anti-allergy bedding.