The silent enemy in our homes that is responsible for asthma in children stopped dead in its tracks

Living in my home and yours is a silent enemy that is responsible for the onset of asthma in some children.

Asthma isn’t contagious, you cannot catch it from someone else. However around 12% of the population suffers from it and on average, in the UK, three people a day die from it.

The UK also has one of the highest prevalent rates of asthma symptoms in children anywhere in the world, in fact on average there are three children in every school class who suffer from asthma.

But where does asthma come from?

Asthma is a respiratory disease, as are bronchitis, emphysema and pneumonia. There is some evidence that there is a genetic connection so children of parents who have a respiratory disease are potentially more likely to get, but it can still appear apparently from nowhere when there isn’t a genetic connection to it. So what triggers it?

Because it is a respiratory disease it can be triggered by things that irritate the lungs and airways and it usually first appears in childhood. This is a good reason not to smoke in enclosed spaces whilst children are present because tobacco smoke has been connected to asthma in children. So no smoking in the car or in the home if you have children.

However one of the most prevalent causes of asthma in children are dust mites.

Dust mites live in all of our homes, it is virtually impossible to eradicate them completely but some homes have more than others. If you can see dust in your home then you will have dust mites too. However they also live in places where you cannot see the dust.

Dust mites live off the tiny flakes of skin that we shed as we go about our lives. These tiny flakes fall of us constantly and settle on surfaces all around us. Dusting and vacuuming clears away this debris, but only where you can reach it to dust and to vacuum.

The one place that is almost impossible to clean is your mattress. Yes you can vacuum that too, but doing that only removes a small percentage of the dust and dust mites inside.

Why are dust mites so prevalent in your mattress?

It is generally accepted that we spend around a third of our lives in bed. Here we lie down and we roll over, we toss, we turn and generally move about. As we do this the friction from our night clothes and bedding rubs away loose particles of skin from our bodies. These particles work their way down through our sheet, electric blanket and whatever other bedding you have and into the mattress below. They generally come to rest a centimetre or two below the surface. This is where the dust mites are. They breed into vast colonies numbering many millions just here below where you are sleeping. They require humidity to break down the particles into a form that they can consume. Again your body heat and perspiration provides this humidity.

Dust mites themselves aren’t dangerous, they don’t bite, sting or suck your blood. They just eat and breed. The life span of a dust mite is between 2 and 3 months and during this lifetime they produce 60 times their own weight in faecal matter. A female dust mite lays between 40 and 80 eggs in her lifetime which take 6-12 days to hatch. Simple mathematics shows us that from a single female a colony can easily number 2-3 million dust mites in less than a year, and that is a very conservative figure. Of course the colony will only grow to the maximum its food source can sustain, but colonies in the millions are very typical.

How does the dust mite trigger asthma?

It is the waste products of the dust mite which are the problem. These waste products build up in the mattress to the point where they are just puffing out of the mattress as you move about.

Those couple of million mites, each producing 60 times their body weight in waste soon create a huge quantity of waste products that just continues to grow as the colony grows. Imagine patting and shaking a dusty cushion, or beating a rug, you can see the dust come out. This happens as you sleep and you and your child are breathing this in.

As we know many people have food allergies and intolerances. The same goes for dust mite waste, some people are intolerant or allergic to it. As they breathe it in it begins to irritate their airways causing them to become reddened and swollen, restricting their breathing. It also has a similar effect on the eyes, making them red and watery as well as causing our nose to run as we create excess mucus. The level of reaction varies from absolutely no reaction to a desperate gasping for breath as our airways become so restricted.

This in itself is frightening and uncomfortable but with some children prolonged exposure to these reactions results in the onset of asthma which can continue through to adulthood, needing constant medication to keep it under control along with the increased risk of developing a serious respiratory event requiring hospitalisation.

Wouldn’t it be so much better not to have to risk the health of our children like this?

Snugnights developed ‘Allergon’ to remove this risk from their beds, It doesn’t just minimise the risk, it removes it completely.

Allergon is a discrete barrier that sits between the mattress and the sheet. Skin particles and moisture cannot pass through the barrier, so there is no food source inside the mattress and therefore no dust mite colony to worry about.

Any dust mites within the mattress die off, the mites don’t just wander off to live somewhere else. When dust mites have their food or moisture cut off, they clump together for protection, but soon die due to food and moisture deprivation.

The barrier also immediately stops all contact between the child and the dust mite waste. Allergon creates an immediate protective barrier for any child (or adult for that matter).

Snugnights owner Nick Colley  said “I personally have asthma  and am allergic to dust mite waste products, when I was first introduced to Allergon I took it home to try and the improvement was instantaneous, I had a great night’s sleep with no allergic reactions whatsoever, what more can I say other than I now own the company”

Allergon removes the risk of dust mites causing asthma, immediately from the first day you use it.

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