4 Tips to Sleep Better With Allergies

Experts give you steps to take to get a good night’s sleep despite persistent allergies.

“If you’re allergic to mold, don’t use a humidifier. Increased humidity promotes mold growth and dust mites, two big allergy triggers. People can get so congested, they can’t breathe — that’ll wake you every time.”

— James Sublett, MD, chief of pediatric allergy at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky

“Pillows and bed coverings advertised as ‘hypoallergenic’ aren’t necessarily worth buying. That just means a product is made out of a substance you can’t be allergic to, not that it prevents allergies. Instead, get dust-mite–proof covers for your pillow, mattress, and box spring.”

— Jacqueline Eghrari-Sabet, MD, an allergist in Gaithersburg, Maryland

“If you have allergies, you’re probably better off with a feather pillow than one made of foam. Feather pillows are more likely to be encased in a tightly woven fabric that keeps dust mites out. And relatively few people are actually allergic to feathers. Besides, foam can exacerbate allergies because of its moisture content.”

— James Sublett, MD

“An oral decongestant might help you breathe better, but it can increase your heart rate, which makes it hard to sleep. A nasal decongestant can rev you up too. At night, try a saline spray or wash instead.”

— Eric Alvarez, a pharmacist in Miami, Florida

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Originally Published in Reader's Digest