If your allergy symptoms worsen at night and prevent you from getting a good night's sleep, allergens in your bedroom may be to blame.  But you don't have to stay up until the crack of dawn, sniffling, sneezing and itching all night long. Instead, you can take some simple steps to allergy proof your room so before you know it, your most bothersome symptoms will be gone.

The Nighttime Connection

If you are like most Americans, you may spend as much as 8 to 10 hours a night in your bedroom. Ideally, during the bulk of this time you will be getting your beauty rest in order to look and feel your best. But if nighttime causes your allergies to kick in, you may be coping with an array of immune system responses including nasal congestion, itchiness and even asthma symptoms.[i]

Recognize Your Biggest Foes

The cause of your allergies can come in multiple forms. Pet saliva and dander can be a trigger, as can dust mites, pollen, mold, smoke, chemicals and other household products and supplies, a variety of scented beauty items and decorations such as candles, and even cockroaches and other pesky bugs that might be hiding out in the cracks of your walls and dark corners.

Take Control

You don't to lie there and be a victim forever, though. The experts offer a wide range of simple strategies for eliminating your biggest triggers so you take control and help yourself feel much better. Here are some things you can do to get rid of allergens and take back your bedroom:

  • Wash your sheets and blankets in very hot water to kill allergens that can be trapped in the fabrics.
  • Enclose your mattress and pillows in hypoallergenic covers to eliminate dust mites and prevent them from nesting inside.
  • Remove your curtains and rugs, since these can be a good place for allergens to hide. Bare windows and floors are generally best for allergy sufferers.
  • Keep books, stuffed animals and knickknacks somewhere else, since these can be very big triggers.
  • Dust and clean often to keep allergens from settling into your space.
  • Banish pets from your room, so they don't leave their dander, saliva or hair on your bed near where you rest your head.
  • Keep food and drinks out of the bedroom to discourage bugs from coming in.
  • Invest in beauty products that are unscented and use them with care.
  • Select household cleaning items that are nontoxic and free from chemical fumes.
  • Keep perfume, candles and potpourri out of your room.
  • Close your windows during high pollen season and use an air conditioner to keep your air clean.[ii]
  • Always shut your bedroom door[iii]



[i] From http://www.natlallergy.com/article.asp?ai=122.

[ii] http://www.aaaai.org/patients/publicedmat/tips/indoorallergens.stm

[iii] From AAAI at http://www.aaaai.org/patients/resources/easy_reader/help.pdf.