Allergy-Proof Your Life

Your Secret Allergy Triggers Revealed

Your allergies could be due to household items like candles, chemicals, stuffed animals, spices, and more.
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Stuffed anything (even Teddy)

Dust mites living in mattresses, plush toys, and pillows are a huge allergy trigger. Roughly 15% of the population is allergic to these microscopic bugs. Encasing mattresses and pillows with impen­etrable covers and cases is a useful step—but it’s not enough. The mites also love kids’ favorite furry toys.

What to do: Wash, dry, then repeat—and use very hot water. “Toys should be washed at 140°, which will ensure that the mites are killed,” Dr. Randolph says. After they’re clean, store them on a shelf, not on the bed. What to do with the nonwashable toys? Every two to three weeks, put them in a plastic bag in the freezer for a couple of hours, which will also kill the mites.

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