Mattress Covers for Dust Mite Allergies

houstworksNovember 11, 2008

HI - I want to buy a mattress cover to keep out the dust mites. I'd like to encase the mattress with the cover.

I try to wash my entire bed covers including the pillows each week.

But if I buy a mattress cover that encases the mattress do I have to wash that too?

It would be too hard to change each time.

Please help


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I have one of those plastic covers that zips around the mattress that I use for my kid's bed. I don't take it off to wash it.. just sometimes wipe it down. If you are using a cloth cover, I am not sure about those. I never really understood how those could really work.

What kind of pillows are you using? I can never find ones that really hold up for multiple washings.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2008 at 11:02AM
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Oh Thanks for the response Carla
I want to buy a mattress cover pretty quickly here.

My pillows don't look like they are in the best shape
and don't last that long.
I did use a pillow cover on one of them and just
wash the whole pillow with the encasing still on it.

I did just find this link though
it talks about buying washable pillows

Do you think if I use the vinyl or plastic cover it will be uncomfortable?


    Bookmark   November 11, 2008 at 11:59AM
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I do think the plastic covering could tend to be uncomfortable. Coincidentally, I was using one on my son's bed because it was a new mattress and he was still potty training. I found out he had dust mites allergies around the same time so I just left the covering on.

If you choose to go the vinyl/plastic route, you can put a heavier mattress pad on top of it that you can wash every week. The extra heavy bedding may not be the best for the allergy but it should at least help with comfort a little. I'm not really sure what the best route is. Maybe someone else will have some good ideas/suggestions.

Thanks for the pillow link.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2008 at 8:11PM
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Hi! We bought a queen and a king mattress recently and bought the dustmite covers for both. I don't like them because they make me hot, it is kind of a rubber cover, but I can see how they do work. The top side is kind of a tight terrycloth so it is soft, but I am really sensitive to temperature when sleeping.

It is really easy to wash, it is like a sheet. What size do you need? I am leaving the queen one on the bed because it is for the guest bedroom, but if you need a king one I am willing to part with it.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 5:35AM
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HI Michelle!

We have a queen size mattress it is 8" deep.

I haven't seen that kind yet.
Where did you find it?
They were expensive?

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 8:48AM
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You should be able to find those type of sheets all over the web. Just type in dust mite covers.

But, I still never understood how those really work. I think they still need to be washed every week, no? And, that's the hassle -- having to put a sheet around your mattress every week. If the mattress is not totally enclosed it won't help. I understand the pore size of the sheets won't allow many dust mites to penetrate the mattress (so the mattress is protected from dust mites so to say) but the dust mites will still build up on the cloth material of the sheet itself-- so the sheets/cover still needs to be washed regularly. Am I missing something?

Oh, and remember to enclose your box spring too. I would definitely vote for a vinyl one for that.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 10:14AM
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Cdo, it was $100 at the mattress store, I know you can get them cheaper, check eBay or bed/bath stores or departments in department stores.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 5:02PM
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Carla I found a link from National Allergy brand mattress covers where they say to vacuum every 10-14 days but only have to wash 1 or 2 times per year.

I read a bit more about Dust Mites on their site

Carla and Michelle Thanks for the help

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 10:36AM
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Thanks for the explanation, CDO. Vacuuming them at least makes some sense. Of course, you'd have to use an allergy filtration vaccuum or else you'd just create a bigger dust mite mess -LOL!

I get skeptical of a lot of the so called 'allergy' items. My kids allergist told me most are really just big money makers for co.'s especially if people don't even realize what they are buying and how it helps what. I wonder how many people know those expenisve allergy sheets have to be vacuumed?

When I first found out about my son I bought all kinds of stuff (even stuff to wash the bedding with, etc). In retrospect, I felt very taken advantage of. I think you have to use some common sense and be very careful of people trying to sell you stuff you may not really need.

Good luck with your bedding. My son is now sleeping on top of a fleece blanket (I wash very often) that is layed under him (it helps keep his bed comfy). And, believe it or not, I have even allowed washable Sponge Bob curtains back into his room! Hope you can find a cheap comfortable sheet that isn't too much work for you.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 12:43PM
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One thing I did notice was the link I posted was
written by the company that sells the product.

Here is what I want to avoid - it takes me nearly a full day
to watch all the bedding on just my bed 1 day per week.
Several loads of wash then add in the pillows.
Not counting the kids beds etc...

So maybe I can try a cheap vinyl and see if I can stand that.
I wonder if other fabrics might work better.

I also thought about how it says if you freeze a stuffed animal for 24 hours in the freezer it kills the dust mites.
So what if I were to open the windows up in the winter in just my room? Its the 24 hours part that won't work.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 1:05PM
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You may want to look into humidity levels and dust mites growth. From what I understand, they don't grow in lower humidity levels so you may be able to add a dehumidifyer to your room. I think when the air conditioner is on, they don't live. It's when the hearter comes on that all the problems can start. The humidity level goes up so they can thrive. --but, low humidty can also aggrevate asthma and cause drying of throat and infections, etc so you have to be careful. --My poor little guy, I used to run a humidifyer in his room when he was sick and he would only get sicker--now I know why! Then again, maybe this whole humidity level thing is just an angle for companies to sell dehumidifyers.

I don't know how bad your allergies are. I would think at some point you would be taking medicine and that a allergy sheet on your bed that may not be washed that often may not really matter all that much anyway. If you do try the vinyl, remember to try a heavier mattress pad on top of it. Although, I just don't know how much all this stuff really end up counting anyway.

I know how the laundry goes. It's one thing to just wash the sheets every week, but to have to wash all the bedding especially in the winter, can take quite a while. I actually would try to find smaller pillows my son could use that could be washed with other stuff. And, I always like to have freshly cleaned bedding because I understand that even sheets and stuff sitting in the closet will attrack a big amount of dust mites over time just through the air -so you can't really wash it in advance.

If I was sick or overworked and forgot to do my son's bedding, I would hear his night time coughing stuff going on (like clock work around day 10). Gosh, I would feel so guilty, but it just seems hard to get everything done sometimes. Of course, laundry was tops on my list the next day.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 1:49PM
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Luckily my allergies are not as severe as his are. Poor Thing.
But certain times of the year things get much worse.

I don't mind buying smaller pillows - that's an idea too.

I have an indoor thermometer now that
shows the humidity levels inside the house
so I'll take more notice of that too.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2008 at 1:00PM
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I don't post here much, but I am happy I saw this today. My daughter who is 30 has had severe allergies for years. When she lived at home, we didn't have all the products that are available now. Her doctor is an asthma and allergy specialist. Allergy tests showed that she was allergic to 64 of the 68 things they tested her for, poor thing. The doctor recommended special bedding and pillows and they can be very expensive. He suggested the ones linked below and my daughter is very happy with them. Not expensive either. Hope that helps someone else, I know how hard allergies can be to live with.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bedding for Allergies

    Bookmark   November 19, 2008 at 2:37PM
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