Nocturnal asthma, also known as nighttime asthma, can make it challenging to sleep at night because of its symptoms including shortness of breath, wheezing and coughing, and tightness in the chest. Due to the lack of sleep, the affected person can wake up feeling tired in the morning and irritable during the day. These aftereffects can also worsen the symptoms of daytime asthma.
Do these symptoms sound familiar to you? If it does, then you should take immediate action starting with keeping allergens away from your bedroom!
No Entry to Dust Mites
The smallest creature can become the trigger for your worst asthma attack, a statement that applies to dust mites. These are microscopic bugs that often live in your mattress and bedding, especially when these things aren’t cleaned and changed on a regular basis. This is true whether you have a top-of-the-line Westin Heavenly Bed mattress or a cheap mattress although we do recommend the former for its superior quality.
Fortunately, you don’t have to live with dust mites and let them trigger your nighttime asthma attack! These steps can aid in preventing their growth in your mattress and beddings:
- Place dust mite-proof covers on mattresses and/or box springs, comforters, and pillows.
- Wash the sheets, blankets and pillowcases, too, every week and change these things on your bed every week, too. Use water heated to at least 130°F when washing these items and dry them in a hot dryer, too.
Many people think that placing pillows and beddings under the hot sun should be enough to kills dust mite colonies. But it isn’t as simple as that so we still suggest the hot wash-and-dry method.
Go for Washable Window Treatments
Look around your bedroom and you will find many dust catchers that seem to attract and keep dust like a magnet. These include blinds and drapes, among other dry clean-only window treatments, which eventually become homes for colonies of dust mites when not cleaned regularly.
Instead of dust catchers, you can install washable roller shades and fabric curtains. These can also be cleaned using a portable vacuum cleaner between washings.
Be sure to wipe down the window frames and glass, too, which will prevent the growth of mold and mildew. These can also trigger allergic reactions in the upper respiratory tract and, thus, possibly cause nighttime asthma.
While carpets have their merits, these are the worst dust catchers and thus, the best place for dust mites to grow. You may then want to reconsider installing carpets in your bedroom and replacing them with linoleum, hardwood floors, and/or washable area rugs.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t have carpets in your bedroom because you can! The trick is in choosing the right type of carpet, preferably the low-pile or low-nap type since these hold fewer allergens. You should also clean it using a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter at least once a week; double bag the dust and dirt collected to ensure that these will not spread.
Tip: Always wear a dust mask when vacuuming so that you don’t inhale the dust floating in the air.
Clean Your Bedroom
The cleaner your bedroom, the less likely it will be a place for roaches, rats and dust mites to thrive. Keep your bedroom free of clutter, too, especially things that gather dust like books, fabrics, and knick-knacks, among other decorative items. You may end up with a less frilly and more minimalist bedroom but you will enjoy the benefit, too – less possibility of nighttime asthma attacks.
And don’t store things under your bed because these can also attract dust and dust mites. Be sure to clean under your bed, too, even when there are no things underneath it.
Roaches No Entry, Too
Cockroaches may survive a nuclear apocalypse but they shouldn’t be allowed in your bedroom. Their tiny droppings can bring on an asthma attack in people with asthma, especially in children. Aside from keeping your bedroom clean and tidy, here are a few more things to remember to keep roaches out in your home:
- Fix leaks in faucets and pipes
- Seal cracks and crevices since these can become entry points
- Avoid leaving wet towels on the bathroom floor or in any floor
- Keep the dishes clean
- Store food and leftovers in tightly-sealed containers
And it’s always a good idea to have regular pest inspections so that infestations can be addressed as early as possible.
If you’re saying no to roaches, dust mites, and dust in your bedroom, then you should also keep your pets outside. While you may love them, they aren’t exactly good for your condition because of their dander and hair.
Keep your room as cool as possible, too. Dust mites like hot and humid temperatures so the cooler your room is, the less likely they will take up residence.
Your proactive approach to controlling your nighttime asthma attacks may be the most effective yet. You can take control now!