Scientists question effectiveness of mattress cleaning for dust-mite allergies
January 5, 2010
NEW YORK — Companies offering mattress sanitation services to combat dust-mite allergies do kill dust mites, but there is no proof the dust mites will stay away for good, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Dust mites, the microscopic arachnids that live in mattresses, pillows and other upholstery, are not harmful, but 18 to 30 percent of people are allergic to dust mite waste, the story stated.
According to the story, companies like Hygienitech Inc. and Dynamic Cleaning Systems Inc., both based out of Florida, utilize a variety of techniques like dry steam, ultraviolet-C light and high-powered vacuuming to remove dust mites from mattresses.
Cost of the service ranges from $45 to $80 depending on the company and the size of the mattress, the story stated.
Pediatric allergist and Professor Peyton Eggleston of John Hopkins Children''s Hospital in Baltimore says that while these companies likely do kill dust mites, mattresses will probably go back to their original level of dust mites in about a month.
Eggleston said: "There really isn''t any data in terms of treating mattresses, and what the effect short-term and long-term is."
According to the story, Hygienitech said it hired a lab to test the effectiveness of ultraviolet light and according to those findings claims its service removes 98 percent of mites and debris.
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