Frequently Asked Questions

Air Purification

Short for high-efficiency particulate air, HEPA filters are among the best a building manager can install and utilize.  Manufacturers of HEPA filters must meet strict requirements for the filters to be classified as such.

The U.S. Department of Energy requires HEPA filters to capture 99.7 of particles larger than 0.3 microns.

According to a NASA study, true medical grade HEPA filters can filter out ultrafine (<0.01 μm) sized particulate matter.

"The phenomena associated with particulate matter removal by HEPA media filters and packed beds of granular material have been reviewed relative to their efficacy for removing fine (<2.5 μm) and ultrafine (<0.01 μm) sized particulate matter. Both HEPA media filters and packed beds of granular material, such as activated carbon, which are both commonly employed for cabin atmosphere purification purposes, are found to have efficacy for removing nanoparticulate contaminants from the cabin atmosphere. When used alone, HEPA-rated media provides superior performance for removing virtually 100% of particulates."

Yes, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the use of HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters in air purifiers as a way to reduce exposure to indoor air pollution, including respiratory viruses like the flu and COVID-19.

HEPA filters are designed to capture at least 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns in size, which includes many viruses and other respiratory irritants. Using a HEPA air purifier can help improve indoor air quality and reduce the risk of respiratory issues, especially for people with allergies or asthma.

Ozone (O3) is a naturally occurring gas that can be beneficial at high levels in the upper atmosphere, where it acts as a protective shield against harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun. This is why your are always hearing about problems with holes in it.

However, at ground level, ozone can be harmful to human health.

Breathing in ozone can irritate the lungs and airways, leading to a range of symptoms such as cough, chest pain, shortness of breath, and worsening of asthma and other respiratory conditions. It can also irritate the eyes, nose, and throat, and can cause chest tightness and wheezing.

Allergies

Allergies are an overreaction of the immune system. People who have allergies have a hyper-alert immune system that overreacts to a substance in the environment called an allergen. Exposure to what is normally a harmless substance, such as pollen, causes the immune system to react as if the substance is harmful.

Allergies are a very common problem, affecting at least 2 out of every 10 Americans.

Additional information: Allergies? Understanding the Immune System

Of all the things that can cause an allergy, pollen is one of the most widespread.

Each spring, summer, and fall, tiny particles are released from trees, weeds, and grasses. These particles, known as pollen, hitch rides on currents of air. 

Although their mission is to fertilize parts of other plants, many never reach their targets. Instead, they enter human noses and throats, triggering a type of seasonal allergic rhinitis called pollen allergy, which many people know as hay fever or rose fever (depending on the season in which the symptoms occur).

Additional information: How Do You Know if You are Allergic to Pollen?

Along with pollens from trees, grasses, and weeds, molds are an important cause of seasonal allergic rhinitis.

People allergic to molds may have symptoms from spring to late fall. The mold season often peaks from July to late summer.

 Unlike pollens, molds may persist after the first killing frost. Some can grow at subfreezing temperatures, but most become dormant. Snow cover lowers the outdoor mold count dramatically but does not kill molds.

After the spring thaw, molds thrive on the vegetation that has been killed by the winter cold. In the warmest areas of the United States, however, molds thrive all year and can cause year-round (perennial) allergic problems. In addition, molds growing indoors can cause perennial allergic rhinitis even in the coldest climates.

For millions of Americans, the world is a scary place, filled with normally harmless substances that their bodies recognize as enemies. Of all the enemies, one is virtually inescapable: house dust. 

What makes lowly house dust such a plague to allergy sufferers is that just one speck contains a host of things that cause an allergic reaction; dust mites, human skin particles, animal dander, parts of cockroaches, mold spores, food particles and other debris.

Ever wonder what really is in the dust on the dresser on that fan blade.

Rather than a single substance, house dust is a varied mixture of potentially allergenic materials. The particles seen floating in that shaft of sunlight may contain fibers from different types of fabrics; cotton lint, feathers, and other stuffing materials; bacteria; mold and fungus spores (especially in damp areas); food particles; bits of plants and insects; and other allergens peculiar to an individual home. You see dust is just not dirt.

Yes, allergies can sometimes cause chest pain.

Allergies can cause inflammation in the body, including the respiratory system. This inflammation can lead to chest tightness, difficulty breathing, and chest pain. Allergic reactions can also cause symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, and a runny nose, which can also contribute to chest discomfort.

If you are experiencing chest pain and think it may be related to allergies, it is important to see a doctor to determine the cause of the pain and to receive proper treatment. Allergic reactions can range from mild to severe and can sometimes be life-threatening.

It is always best to be cautious and seek medical attention if you are experiencing chest pain or other concerning symptoms.

We’ve all been there. You dust all the furniture and a few days later it’s covered in dust again. You glance toward a window on a sunny day and see particles, floating freely in the air.

Household dust is a mixture of many different substances that can come from a variety of sources inside and outside of your home. They include skin cells, fabric fiber, pollen, mold, dander, dirt, food just to mention a few. 

In addition to these sources, household dust can also contain a variety of other small particles, including bacteria, viruses, and chemicals.

For additional information, check out "Where Does all the Dust in Your House Come From?" in our resource center.

Allergies are often hereditary.  If you have a family history of allergies, you are more likely to develop allergies yourself. However, it is not always the case that if one parent has allergies, the child will also have allergies.

It is possible for a child to inherit the tendency to develop allergies from only one parent, or from both parents. In addition to genetics, environmental factors such as exposure to allergens can also play a role in the development of allergies.

For additional information check out "Are Allergies Hereditary?" in our resource center. 

Allergy symptoms can be worse in the morning for a few reasons.

One possible explanation is that the body's natural cortisol levels are highest in the morning, and cortisol can suppress the immune system, making a person more susceptible to an allergic reaction.

Additionally, the accumulation of dust mites and their allergens can be more concentrated in bedrooms, which people spend around 8 hour in, leading to more exposure. When we sleep, we tend to toss and turn and create more movement in our beds, agitating dust mites and releasing allergens into the air.

Trust us, you are not alone.

It is estimated that approximately 50 million people in the United States have allergies. Allergies affect people of all ages and can cause a wide range of symptoms, from mild to severe. Some of the most common allergens in the United States include pollen, dust mites, animal dander, and certain foods. It is also important to note that people might have more than one type of allergy

It's worth noting that the prevalence of allergies can vary depending on the location, some areas might have higher prevalence due to environmental factors like high pollen counts or certain species of plants.

There are several methods that doctors use to test for allergies, and the most appropriate method will depend on the suspected allergen and the individual's symptoms. Some of the most common methods include:

  1. Skin Prick Test: The skin prick test is a common and quick method used to test for allergies. 

  2. Blood test: Blood tests, such as the RAST (RadioAllergoSorbent Test) can be used to test for allergies. 

  3. Patch test: A patch test is used to test for allergic reactions to substances that come into contact with the skin.

  4. Intradermal Test: similar to skin prick test but the allergen is injected into the skin by a needle. 

  5. Challenge Test: is a diagnostic test where a doctor will give you a small dose of the allergen, and monitor your reaction.

It's important to note that no single test can diagnose all allergies. A combination of tests and a careful review of symptoms and medical history are usually needed to make a diagnosis.

For additional information on allergy testing 

Allergies are becoming increasingly common in developed countries and the reasons for this increase are not fully understood.

However, several theories have been proposed to explain this trend. The Hygiene Hypothesis suggests that cleaner and more sterile environments lead to under-stimulation of the immune system and increased susceptibility to allergies.

Changes in diet, with a higher intake of processed foods and less fresh foods can also lead to changes in the gut microbiome and immune system making people more susceptible to allergies.

Exposure to chemicals and pollution in developed countries can contribute to the development of allergies by increasing inflammation and altering the immune system.

Genetic factors also play a role in the development of allergies, but they don't fully explain the increase in prevalence of allergies.

Climate change can also influence the timing and severity of allergies by altering growth patterns of certain plants and increasing the level of certain pollutants in the air. 

For additional information check out "Why are Allergies Increasing in Developed Countries" in our resource center.

Eye allergies, also known as ocular allergies or allergic conjunctivitis, occur when the immune system overreacts to a substance (allergen) that comes into contact with the eyes.

Symptoms can include itching, redness, watering, and puffiness of the eyes, as well as a feeling of grittiness or foreign body sensation. Eye allergies can be caused by a variety of allergens, including pollen, pet dander, dust mites, and mold. 

For additional information check out "How Allergies Affect You Eyes" in the resource center.

Asthma

Asthma (Az-muh) is a chronic disease that affects your airways. The airways are the tubes that carry air in and out of your lungs. If you have asthma, the inside walls of your airways are inflamed (swollen).

The inflammation makes the airways very sensitive, and they tend to react strongly to things that you are allergic to or find irritating. When the airways react, they get narrower, and less air flows through to your lung tissue. This causes symptoms like wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and trouble breathing, especially at night and in the early morning.

Asthma cannot be cured, but most people with asthma can control it so that they have few and infrequent symptoms and can live active lives.

Asthma can be life-threatening if not properly managed. 

For additional information on asthma please read "Asthma, Understaning What it is is Half the Battle"

Yes, some people with asthma may outgrow the condition, especially if it was diagnosed in childhood. However, this is not the case for all individuals with asthma, and it is not uncommon for adults to develop asthma later in life. 

It is important to continue following your treatment plan and managing your symptoms, even if you believe you may have outgrown your asthma. If you have asthma and have questions about whether you can outgrow it, you should discuss this with your doctor.

For aditional information check out "Can You Outgrow Asthma" in our resource center.

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are small wingless insects that feed solely upon the blood of warm-blooded animals. Bed bugs and their relatives have evolved as nest parasites. Certain kinds inhabit bird nests and bat roosts and await the return of their hosts; others have adapted well to living in the ‘nests’ (homes) of people.

Additional Information: Bed Bugs | Cimex lectularius (Cimicidae)

There are a few signs that you may have bed bugs:

  1. Bites on your skin: Bed bugs typically bite the exposed skin on your neck, arms, legs, and face. The bites may be itchy and appear as small red bumps or welts.

  2. Bloodstains on your sheets: Bed bugs can leave behind small, reddish-brown stains on your sheets, pillowcases, and mattress. These stains may be a sign that bed bugs have been crushed while you were sleeping.

  3. Actual sightings of bed bugs: You may see live or dead bed bugs in the folds of your mattress, in the seams of your bedding, or on the floor near your bed.

  4. A musty, sweet smell: Bed bugs release an odorous chemical that can give off a musty, sweet smell. This smell may be more noticeable in areas where bed bugs are concentrated, such as in your bed or on your bedding.

If you suspect that you have bed bugs, it is important to take steps to remove them as soon as possible to prevent the infestation from spreading. 

There are several steps you can take to kill bed bugs:

  1. Wash your bedding in hot water: Wash your sheets, pillowcases, blankets, and any other bedding in hot water (at least 120°F) to kill any bed bugs that may be present. Be sure to use the hottest water setting on your washing machine, and dry the bedding on the highest heat setting.

  2. Vacuum your bed and surrounding areas: Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter to thoroughly vacuum your bed, including the mattress, box spring, and any cracks or crevices where bed bugs may be hiding. Dispose of the vacuum bag immediately after use to prevent the bed bugs from escaping.

  3. Seal cracks and crevices: Use a silicone-based caulk or a high-quality tape to seal any cracks or crevices where bed bugs may be hiding. This will help prevent them from spreading to other areas of your home.
  4. Use a bed bug-proof encasement: Cover your mattress and box spring with a bed bug-proof encasement to prevent bed bugs from getting in or out. This can help contain any existing bed bugs and prevent new ones from infesting your bed.

If you are unable to get rid of the bed bugs on your own, you may need to call a professional exterminator. They can provide additional treatment options and help ensure that the bed bugs are eliminated from your home.

Bed bugs are small, oval-shaped insects that are reddish-brown in color. Adult bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed (5-7 mm long) and have a flat, oval-shaped body. They are wingless and have six legs, which they use to crawl around and feed on the blood of humans and animals.

For additional on bed bugs check out "What are Bed Bugs" in our resouce center.

What do bed bug bites look like?

Bed bug bites are small, red bumps that can appear on the skin after you have been bitten by a bed bug. The bites are usually found on areas of the body that are exposed while you are sleeping, such as the face, neck, back, arms, and legs. Some people may not have any visible reaction to bed bug bites, while others may develop itchy, red bumps or welts.

For additional infomation check out "So What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like" in our resource center.

Bedding

Allergy bedding is usually the first thing an allergist recommends after being diagnosed with allergies. The best covers are effective against dust mites, bed bugs, pollen, pet dander and other allergens.

The mattress and pillow covers are made to keep dust mite allergens out of your bed or keep the ones already in it from messing with your allergies.

Additional information: Allergy Bedding | Step #1 in Fighting Dust Mite Allergies

No. You can use them right out of the package. AllergyCare bedding has not been treated with any antimicrobial solutions.

Sleep is important for a variety of reasons. During sleep, your body is able to repair and regenerate tissues, build bone and muscle, and consolidate memories. It is also a time when your brain is able to process and consolidate information from the day. Getting enough sleep is also important for your physical and mental health, as it can help you maintain a healthy weight, improve your mood, and reduce the risk of developing certain health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.

Additionally, sleep is necessary for proper brain function. While you are sleeping, your brain is able to process and consolidate information, which helps you learn and remember new things. Studies have also shown that sleep is important for problem-solving and decision-making abilities.

Overall, getting enough healthy sleep is essential for maintaining both physical and mental health, as well as for proper brain function.

There are several benefits to using a wool comforter:

  1. Wool is a natural insulator, meaning it can help regulate body temperature by keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

  2. Wool is hypoallergenic, making it a good choice for people with allergies or sensitivities to synthetic materials.

  3. Wool is resistant to dust mites, mold, and other allergens, which can help improve indoor air quality.

  4. Wool is naturally moisture-wicking, meaning it can absorb and evaporate moisture, helping to keep you dry and comfortable while you sleep.

  5. Wool is durable and long-lasting, making it a good investment for your bedding needs.

  6. Wool is sustainable and biodegradable, making it a good choice for those who are environmentally conscious.

Overall, organic wool comforters can provide a comfortable, hypoallergenic, and sustainable sleep experience.

There are a few signs that it may be time to replace your mattress:

  1. Your mattress is more than 7-10 years old: Over time, mattresses can lose their support and comfort, leading to poor sleep quality.

  2. You consistently wake up feeling tired or with aches and pains: If your mattress is not providing proper support, it can cause discomfort and disrupt your sleep.

  3. You can see visible signs of wear and tear: Sagging, visible indentations, or lumps in your mattress can all be signs that it is time to replace it.

  4. Your allergies seem to be acting up: If you have allergies and notice an increase in symptoms while you sleep, your mattress may be to blame. Dust mites, mold, and other allergens can accumulate in a mattress over time.

If you're experiencing any of these issues, it may be time to consider replacing your mattress.

It depends on the specific waterproof mattress protector you have. All of the protectors we carry can be.

It's important to follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer to ensure that the protector is washed and dried properly. Some protectors may need to be washed in cold water and tumble dried on a low heat setting, while others may be able to be washed in hot water and dried on a high heat setting. It's also a good idea to avoid using bleach or fabric softeners when washing the protector, as these can potentially damage the waterproof barrier. 

 

The dust mite covers on the mattress only need to be washed once or twice a year unless something is spilled on them. If the covers are for a child and the child still has accidents every so often then the mattress covers will need to be washed as needed.  

We wash our pillow covers about every 4-6 weeks. Just put them in the weekly load of sheets. 

For additional information and care instructions check out "How to Care for Your New Mattress Covers" in our resource center.

Dust Mites

Dust mites are tiny animals you cannot see. Every home has dust mites. They feed on skin flakes and are found in mattresses, pillows, carpets, upholstered furniture, bedcovers, clothes, stuffed toys, and fabric or other fabric-covered items. Body parts and feces of dust mites can trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals.

Additional information and facts about Dust Mites

It does little good to actually kill dust mites, as dead dust mite bodies still contain the problem causing protein and killing dust mites does nothing to remove the fecal matter. Killing them could prove to be an effort in futility.

Additional information on how you prevent and get rid dust mites in your home.

No, dust mites do not bite. In fact they could not bite even if they tried. 

Dust mites do not have biting mouthparts. Their eating parts are not like ours  A dust mite doesn’t have a head. It has a body part known as a gnathosoma. It’s a fusion of the top most body part, legs, and the chelicerae.

The chelicerae are the cutting, piercing and grasping parts. They are too small, too dull, and too weak to remove skin from a living host.

Looking for more information on dust mite? Check out Dust Mite Information and Facts in our resource center. 

Dust mites are very small and not visible to the naked eye. They are about 0.3 millimeters in size and are translucent, so they appear almost transparent. They have a pear-shaped body and eight legs, and they are closely related to spiders and ticks. Dust mites are usually found in bedding, furniture, and carpets, where they feed on the flakes of skin that humans and animals shed.

It is not likely that dust mites would live on your body for very long, as they require a humid environment to survive, and the humidity on the human body is not high enough to support their survival.

They typically live in bedding, furniture, and carpets, where they have access to the flakes of skin that humans and animals shed.

Yes, dust mites can cause hives in some people. Hives, also known as urticaria, are a type of skin rash characterized by red, itchy bumps that can appear anywhere on the body. Hives can be triggered by allergens from dust mites.

For additional information on hives, dust and dust mites check out Can You Get Hives From Dust in our resource center.

Yes. Dust mite mattress covers are designed to prevent dust mites from infesting mattresses and can be effective in reducing the number of dust mite allergens in a mattress. However, they should be used in combination with other measures, such as dust mite-proof covers for pillows and comforters and washing of bedding, and keeping humidity levels low, to effectively reduce dust mites in the home. 

For additional information check out "Do Dust Mite Covers Really Work" in our resource center.

Food Allergies

Peanut allergy is triggered by the consumption of peanuts or foods that contain peanuts. Some examples of foods that may contain peanuts or peanut products include:

  • Baked goods (cookies, pastries, etc.)
  • Candy
  • Chili
  • Egg rolls
  • Ice cream
  • Marzipan
  • Sauces (such as hoisin sauce)
  • Vegetarian meat substitutes

It is important for individuals with peanut allergy to read food labels carefully to avoid accidental exposure to peanuts or peanut products. Peanuts are often present in foods that you might not expect, so it is important to be vigilant when reading labels.

The top 10 most common food allergies are:

  1. Peanuts
  2. Tree nuts (such as almonds, walnuts, and cashews)
  3. Fish
  4. Shellfish
  5. Milk
  6. Wheat
  7. Soy
  8. Egg
  9. Corn
  10. Sesame

It is important to note that the prevalence of food allergies varies by region and population.

These are just some of the most common food allergies, and it is possible for individuals to be allergic to other foods as well. If you have a food allergy, it is important to be aware of which foods you are allergic to and to take steps to avoid them.

If you are concerned that you may have a food allergy, it is important to speak with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and management.

Pet Allergies

Pet dander is tiny particles of skin that are shed by animals with fur or feathers. All animals, including cats, dogs, birds, and rodents, produce dander. When an animal sheds its skin, tiny scales called dander are released into the air. Dander is made up of proteins that are found in an animal's skin, fur, and saliva.

For more information on pet dander check out What is Pet Dander and How Do You Get rid of It in our resource center.

There is no one "best" breed of dog for people with allergies, as every person's allergies are different and may be triggered by different substances. However, some breeds of dogs are considered to be hypoallergenic, which means that they are less likely to cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to pet dander.

It's important to note that no dog is completely hypoallergenic, and even breeds that are considered to be hypoallergenic can still cause allergic reactions in some people.

For more information check out "What Are the Best Dog Breeds for People With Allergies" in our resource center.

Yes, it is possible to be allergic to cats and not dogs, or vice versa. Allergies are caused by an immune system reaction to substances called allergens, which can be found in a variety of things, including pet dander, pollen, and certain foods. People who are allergic to one type of pet may not necessarily be allergic to another type of pet, as the allergens that trigger their allergies may be different.

In general, people who are allergic to cats may be allergic to a protein called Fel d 1, which is found in a cat's skin cells, fur, and saliva. People who are allergic to dogs may be allergic to a protein called Can f 1, which is found in a dog's skin cells and saliva. However, it is also possible to be allergic to both cats and dogs, or to other types of pets.

For more information check out "Can You Be Allergic to Cats and Not Dogs?" in our resource center.

Pet dander is a mixture of skin flakes and proteins that are shed by animals with fur or feathers. It is a common allergen that can cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to it. Pet dander can be found on the fur, feathers, and skin of pets, and it can be easily inhaled or come into contact with the skin. It is a very small particle, so it can remain suspended in the air for a long time and can be easily spread from one place to another.

Some people believe that there are hypoallergenic cat breeds. However, there is no such thing as a completely hypoallergenic cat. All cats produce some level of dander, and people can be allergic to proteins found in a cat's saliva, urine, and skin secretions in addition to dander.

That being said, some cat breeds are known to produce less dander and may be less likely to cause allergic reactions in sensitive people. For more information check out "What are the Best Breed of Cats for People with Allergies" in our resource center.

Allersearch ADMS (Anti-Allergen Spray) is designed to denature (break down) pet dander and other allergens on surfaces in home and/or other building.

It is typically used as a treatment for individuals with allergies or asthma who are sensitive to pet dander and other allergens. When used as directed, Allersearch ADMS can help to reduce the levels of allergens in the air and on surfaces, which can help to alleviate symptoms of allergies and asthma.

Additional product information on ADMS anti-allergen spray.

Returns

If merchandise is defective or damaged upon receipt, please contact us immediately by phone (800) 771-2246 or email (allergy@allergystore.com) and we will replace the item and provide you a prepaid return label.

Unused Items may be returned up to 60 days from date of purchase. Some items are non-returnable. The customer is responsible for all return shipping charges. Please see our Return Policy for additional information. 

Click here to submit your return request.  

Shipping

Ground orders are usually delivered in 2 to 5 business days. Some orders may take longer than 5 days especially during bad weather.

Truck freight orders are usually delivered in 7-12 business days. All truck freight deliveries will be scheduled through the shipping carrier with the customer and need a valid daytime phone number.

Please be aware that weekends are not considered business days.

Tracking numbers are usually available and emailed within 1 to 2 BUSINESS DAYS after placing your order. (On some orders it may take longer). Note: If you did not provide an email address when you placed your order, we will not be able to send you the tracking information.

All orders are shipped "no signature required" for your convenience, however, we recommend that you are available to sign for the package. We are not responsible for losses that occur as a result of packages being left in your absence.

Your order may arrive on two or more different days because we could ship it from multiple warehouses. 

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