Today we know that allergies have a cumulative effect on our bodies; that is, the older you get, the worse allergies get, depending on what you were exposed to while growing up. Nasty microscopic bed bugs, dust mites, and bacteria live in most mattresses and pillows, separated from your face and body only by the barrier that you place between them and you. They feed on dead skin cells and become, for humans, a major cause of asthma, exzema, and rhinitis.
Unfortunately, standard pillowcases and sheets (in other words, the bedding we use every day), do not serve as adequate barriers from the nasty little bugs that invade even the cleanest eds. Fortunately, the right mattress cover can provide much-needed protection.
We make a substantial investment in a good mattress. For those of us with back and other injuries that we must accommodate by providing additional sleep support, we also spend a hefty sum on therapeutic pillows for our head and neck and on body pillows.
So what happens when we bring a new mattress home and plunk down our old pillow on it? And what happens when we buy an expensive neck or body pillow and put it on our existing mattress?
Well, you can guess that the nasty bugs travel right through our bedding to build a comfy home in the brand new product.
What we really need is a mattress cover that is a breathable yet waterproof barrier fabric that prevents bacteria and dust mites from breeding in our mattresses and pillows. We would all like something that feels soft to the touch yet does not let anything get through to our skin and into the new products that we buy.
And while we're at it, why not provide a healthy, allergy-free sleep zone for baby to reduce the allergens to which baby is exposed from the start!
There are mattress covers available today that provide the barrier we seek. There are two types.
1. The less-expensive mattress protectors, such as the Slumber Soft Mattress Pad, are top-layer, waterproof barriers to protect our mattresses from moisture from bed wetting, sweating, etc. They have a super-soft feel like natural cotton, but are typically made from durable polyester Flannelatte Laminated Vinyl to prevent any leakage onto the mattress. That just means that they simulate flannel with an underlying layer of impermeable vinyl.
They make excellent mattress protectors for the crib and for the elderly. Family caregivers appreciate the fact that they are lightweight and easy maintenance (machine washable). With straps to hook around the corners of the mattress, they are easy to remove and clean, and easy to replace on the mattress.
Some of the waterproof-only mattress protectors are reversible so you can use them longer. With a super-soft, cottony feel, they give both baby and the elderly a comfortable night's sleep while protecting the mattress from moisture and odor. For the elderly, they may reduce the occurrence of bed sores by keeping harsh moisture away from sensitive skin.
2. The second type of mattress cover is the allergy prevention mattress cover that is slightly more expensive but which provides complete protection both against moisture and dust mites or bacteria. The dust mites or bacteria that may have lived in your mattress will not reach your skin or lungs once your mattress is covered with an impenetrable allergy mattress cover. It wraps your mattress like a fitted sheet. While your skin feels soft cotton on top, the waterproof, impenetrable-barrier layer further down, made from the latest high tech fabric, separates you from the bugs!
There are also mattress covers in baby's size to protect the crib mattress both from dust mites and from bedwetting moisture, stains, and odor! The allergy mattress cover offers complete protection as a waterproof barrier and as a shield against dust mites found in every home.
Two Types of Allergy Prevention Mattress Protectors
Mattress Surface Protectors
Mattress Protectors either protect the surface of the mattress, which is what most mattress protectors that you buy in stores do, or the entire mattress. Mattress surface protectors typically have elastic straps that go down under the bottom of the mattress, or a full set of sides with elastic at the bottom. The sides are not usually made from the protective fabric, so it is really only the top that is protected.
The Slumbersoft Mattress Protector matches the first description. It has simple elastic straps that go under the bottom of the mattress, leaving some or all of the sides exposed. The surface of the mattress is well protected from liquids and stains, but only the surface.
The Plush-Guard Mattress Protector and the Bed Guard Mattress Protectors are both examples of the type whose sides reach all the way to the bottom of the mattress but do not cover the bottom of the mattress. Elastic at the bottom holds it firmly on the mattress from below. They are excellent top barriers made for platform bed mattresses, that is, not folding futon mattresses. They come in depths (lofts) up to 15" for thicker mattresses.
The Plush-Guard Futon Protector
A much more significant level of protection comes from having all sides of the mattress covered with the protective fabric and encased — top, bottom, and all four sides — so nothing inside the mattress gets out and nothing outside the mattress gets in! Once you put the Plush Guard Futon Protector on your mattress, nothing penetrates. It Zips All Around and zips shut, forming the ultimate barrier against allergy-causing dirt and microscopic bed bugs.
Allergy-prevention mattress covers are available in pillow case slip-on sizes to protect your face and neck while you sleep. Both Bed Guard and Plush Guard have pillow protectors that are superior products.
Just be careful to examine the label on the mattress cover or pillow cover to ensure that you are getting the proper protection. If it is a waterproof mattress cover (for bedwetting) that you are protecting against, either level will do. If it is an allergy mattress cover that interests you, the label should discuss the mattress protectors' barrier against dust mites and bacteria.
This seemingly minor addition to your bed will enhance your sleeping comfort by creating a healthy sleep zone for you and your family.