The beds in nearly one in four homes in the United States contain high levels of dust mite allergen, allergy-inducing proteins produced by the microscopic dust mite.

"Washing clothes and bedding in hot water (50 C) for >30 minutes is required to kill D. pteronyssinus and E. maynei whereas a 7.5-minute wash will kill D. farinae. One-hundred percent mortality can be reached for D. pteronyssinus and E. maynei after 12- and 5-minute soaks, respectively, at 53 C. A 4-hour wash in warm water (35 C) kills less than half of the mites."
Temperatures of 140 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour or more are known to be lethal to dust mites.

The Pillow top Cover is fully removable and Dry Cleanable. You can even unzip the bed and vacuum the inside.

*Note: Remember, if the Visco foam is sealed inside of the pillow top it is NOT dry cleanable.

"People are exposed to more dust mite allergens while in bed when compared to other activities performed throughout the day, researchers at the 2001 AAAAI Annual Meeting.

Using nasal filters, Sandra De Lucca, BSc and colleagues from the Institute of Respiratory Medicine in Sydney Australia, collected particles that people inhaled during normal respiration and measured them for allergen content. Subjects wore the nasal filters for one hour during seven activities: in the morning at home, driving to work, at work in the morning and afternoon, driving home, in the evening at home and while lying in bed. This allowed researchers to monitor the actual dose of mite allergen the 10 subjects inhaled during daily activities.

Results indicated that the subjects were exposed to higher levels of mite allergen in the home environments, with the majority of exposure occurring while the subject was lying in bed. While lying in bed, the average level of inhaled mite allergen was eight times higher than while driving to work and 1.5 times higher than at home in the evening. Since people spend one-third of the day in bed, allergen avoidance measures and effective washing routines to remove mite allergens from bedding needs to be employed to reduce exposure, especially among allergy sufferers."

Symptoms are respiratory in nature, usually not a rash. However, there are reports of a red rash around the neck. The wheeze-inducing proteins are digestive juices from the mite gut and are potent. An exposure to the mites in the first year of a infants life can trigger a lifelong allergy.

There is no cure, only prevention. One must control the levels of dust mites. Beds are a prime habitat, a typical mattress may have anywhere from 100,000 to 10 million mites inside. Mites prefer warm, moist surroundings such as the inside of a mattress when someone is on it. Their favorite food is dander (human skin flakes), also, bedroom carpeting and household upholstery support high mite populations. Dust mites, due to their very small size (250 to 300 microns in length) and translucent bodies, are not visible to the unaided eye. For accurate identification, one needs at least 10X magnification. Through a microscope, one will see many oval-shaped mites scuttling around and over one another. There are eight hairy legs, no eyes, no antennae, a mouthpart group in front of body (resembles a head) and a tough, translucent shell, giving a "fearsome appearance".