Six winter allergy symptoms that can be fixed with cleaning

When thinking about allergies, most of us think of springtime and the allergy-induced sneezing, watery eyes and runny nose caused from being outdoors. So come wintertime, allergies should be a non-issue, right? Wrong.Six winter allergy symptoms that can be fixed with cleaning

According to WebMD, many of those springtime allergens, like pet dander, mildew, mold and dust, are present 365 days a year. And during the winter, most people are spending more time inside with the windows closed and the heater cranked, which increases exposure to these allergens. And that means more:

  • Coughing.
  • Itchy eyes and nose.
  • Runny nose.
  • Sneezing.
  • Watery eyes.
  • Dark circles under the eyes.

So how can you help alleviate these winter allergy symptoms? Cleaning.

Here are some cleaning tips that you can use to help minimize winter allergy symptoms caused by dust, mold, mildew and pet dander in your home.

  • Reduce humidity. Keeping humidity levels low decreases dust mite and mold growth. Using a dehumidifier in damp areas can help lower the humidity in your home.
  • Wash your sheets. Wash your sheets and pillowcases weekly in hot water – at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit – to kill any dust mites that may be present.
  • Cover your mattress and pillows. Using special allergen-proof mattress and pillow covers can help alleviate symptoms while you sleep. Mattress encasements and pillow protectors, like the AllerZip® Smooth Mattress Encasement and AllerZip® Smooth Pillow Protector are designed specifically for allergy sufferers to provide a protective barrier against dust mites, bacteria and other allergens.
  • Vacuum Regularly. Vacuuming regularly with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter can help diminish allergens in the home. HEPA vacuum cleaners filter out 99.7% of small particles, leaving you with fewer allergens than a traditional vacuum cleaner.
  • Bathe your pets. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America recommends giving your pet weekly baths to reduce the presence of airborne allergens in your home.

For more tips on how to minimize sneezes and sniffles, check out these tips on how to combat seasonal allergies for healthy sleep.

Seven signs you need a new mattress

Does your back constantly hurt when you wake up in the morning? Do you still feel tired even after a full night’s rest? It may be your mattress that’s causing you those sleepless nights. Here are seven ways to tell if it’s time for a new mattress. Seven signs you need a new mattress

  1. Listen to your body. First and foremost, listen to your body. If you’re regularly waking up feeling stiff or sore, or have new pains in your back, it may be a sign that your current mattress isn’t properly supporting you at night. Sleeping on a bad bed can affect both your health and quality of life.
  2. Signs of wear and tear. The same goes for your mattress as it does with your pillow, if it’s lumpy and sagging in the middle, then it’s probably time to say goodbye. Don’t forget about stains, exposed coils and tearing at the seams.
  3. You sleep better away from your bed. Do you sleep better on a hotel bed, a couch, or even on the floor? If so, then it’s time to look into a new mattress.
  4. Size matters. If you and your partner, animals or children can’t comfortably sleep on your current mattress together, then you’re probably not sleeping very well at night and might need a larger size.
  5. It’s creaky. When you roll or change positions in your bed, does it creak or sway? This could be a sign that the wood in your box spring is losing its support.
  6. It’s more than seven years old. We get it. Mattresses are expensive nowadays, but if you’re using a hand-me-down from your parents or worse, your grandparents, you might want to look into getting a new mattress. The Better Sleep Council recommends replacing your mattress if it’s seven years or older.
  7. Will a new mattress help you sleep better? If you answered yes, then it’s time to replace what you’re sleeping on.

When you do decide to toss your old mattress and invest in a new one, you’ll be off to sleep in no time. But with the costs of mattresses stretching from $300 to $30,000, you’ll want to make sure your investment lasts. Protect-A-Bed’s Mattress Protectors can help extend the life of your mattress by protecting it from allergens, dust mites, liquids and stains that can be detrimental to both your health and the life of your mattress.

New Year’s resolutions for a healthy 2015

New Year’s resolutions for a healthy 2015It’s that time of the year again and many of us are beginning to think about how we can better ourselves in some way by making healthy New Year’s resolutions.

While sticking to a New Year’s resolution is not always easy, it’s definitely not impossible. Try setting and sticking to just one resolution this year, instead of multiple.

Not sure what your goals should be? Here’s a list of some New Year’s resolutions for a healthy 2015.

  • Reduce stress. A little stress can be good for you, but continuous stress can be detrimental to your health. Chronic stress is linked to numerous health problems, including anxiety, depression, heart disease, insomnia and can even affect your memory and concentration. So this year, don’t sweat the small stuff and try to relax.
  • Get more sleep. Not only does sleep make you feel better, but sufficient sleep is essential for physical and mental health. Sleep can sharpen your mind, protect your heart, help you maintain a healthy weight and may even lead to longer life. So get to sleep already! If you have trouble sleeping, try an adjustable pillow that can be tailored to fit your sleeping style just right, whether you sleep on your side, stomach or back.
  • Portion control. Want to slim down this year? Start by slimming down what’s on your plate. Studies have shown that using smaller plates and bowls can promote weight loss because they help to curb overeating.
  • Be active. Physical activity good for both physical and mental health. Experts recommend at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous aerobic activity. As a general goal, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day.
  • Wear sunscreen. If skin cancer doesn’t convince you, then maybe your vanity will. Year-round use of sunscreen has been shown to significantly slow the aging of skin caused by the sun’s ultraviolet rays, which account for 90% of the symptoms of premature skin aging. So protect yourself from skin cancer and prevent yourself from looking like this.
  • Make time for yourself. Often an overlooked New Year’s resolution, but making time for yourself is important for your own health and happiness. Whether that means traveling, volunteering or reading a good book – make sure you make time for yourself this year.  

Have trouble sticking to your New Year’s resolutions? Check out these 6 ways to make your New Year’s resolutions stick from USA Today.

Five signs you need a new pillow

For most of us, a good night’s rest starts with the pillow that’s under our heads, which is why it’s so important to recognize when it’s time to invest in a new one. Yes, that favorite pillow of yours that you’ve been using for the last decade definitely needs to be replaced (we know it’s hard).Five signs you need a new pillow

So how do you know if it’s time for a switch? Here are five signs that you need a new pillow.

  1. It smells funny. Throw away pillows at the first hint of bad smells. This may be a sign that mold and mildew are present and definitely needs to be tossed.
  2. It’s a pain in the neck. How do you feel? If you wake up with aches and pains in your neck, it may be time to invest in a new pillow that better supports your sleep style. The Luxury Adjustable Pillow System, can be adjusted to firmness and height preferences, and will ensure a comfortable night’s rest, whether you sleep on your side, stomach or back.
  3. It has lumps. When you lay your pillow flat, is it lumpy or does it have bumps in it? If you answered, yes, then it’s time for a new pillow.
  4. It folds in half…and stays folded. Whether your pillow is filled with natural or synthetic down or memory foam, it should always, or at least slowly, regain its shape after being folded in half. If it doesn’t, then it may be time for a new pillow.
  5. It’s past its prime. We know it’s rude to ask, but how old is your pillow? Pillows should be replaced every two years because a lot of dust, bacteria, oil and dust mites, can build up over time, creating an unhealthy sleep environment. Using pillow protectors, like the AllerZip Smooth Pillow Protector, can protect your pillows from bacteria, mold and mites to extend longevity.

If your current pillow falls into any of the above categories, then it’s time to replace it and get a new pillow that gives you the support you need and provides you with a healthy sleep zone.

Snoring solutions to save your sanity

Snoring affects almost 90 million American adults and 37 million adults on a regular basis. Snoring doesn’t just affect the snorer, but also the snorer’s partner. In fact, people who sleep next to a snorer are reported to have higher levels of fatigue and sleepiness and may even be at higher risk for hearing loss. Snoring solutions to save your sanity

Bottom line: sleeping with someone who snores is annoying, makes you lose sleep (i.e., become grouchy) and is borderline unhealthy. So how does one sleep with a snorer? We’ve compiled a few snoring solutions to help you sleep and save your sanity.

  • Muffle the noise. Invest in a pair of earplugs to muffle the noise. Earplugs have proven to be a simple and effective snoring solution for those who sleep with a snorer. If earplugs aren’t a feasible option or you’re just not a fan, try to find a source of white noise, like a fan or a white noise app, to help drown out the snoring.
  • Roll them. Snoring is usually the most frequent when sleeping on the back. So if you wake up to your partner snoring and they’re sleeping on their back – try rolling them on their side.
  • Change your pillows. Allergens or dust mites on your pillow may contribute to your partner’s snoring. Consider washing or replacing your pillows, which should be swapped out every two years. The AllerZip Smooth Pillow Protector can also help as it’s designed for allergy sufferers to provide a protective barrier against dust mites, bacteria and other allergens.
  • Sleep separately. And if all else fails and the snoring continues to bother you, consider sleeping separately a few nights out of the week so that you’re getting enough rest too.

Interested in more snoring solutions to save your sanity? Share these seven tips to stop snoring with your loved one.