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Posted by kevvyg on Monday, February 24, 2014
Newest Ask an Allergist - Dr. Matthew MardineyAs February draws to a close, we'd like to look forward to the inevitable March of Spring. (Sorry, it's Saturday, so bad puns ahoy!) But as some of us are hopefully saying goodbye to winter weather, icy roads, and snow days, we'd like to introduce everyone to our newest contributor to our Ask an Allergist segment, Dr. Matthew Mardiney. Originally from Maryland, Dr. Mardiney has been practicing medicine, with a focus on allergies, asthma and immunology, for nearly fifteen years. So if you have questions about allergies, asthma, eczema, chemical sensitivities or other related medical issues, submit them via the blog comments, email (blog@achooallergy.com), call, chat, FAQ submission or snail mail them and yours could be answered and featured by Dr. Mardiney in Ask the Allergist!

To read past Ask an Allergist questions and answers.

Oh, and just a reminder, there is only ONE week left of our Annual White Sale! Take advantage while you can on discounted allergy bedding, organic cotton bedding and other healthy bedding products.

Author: K. Gilmore

Posted by kevvyg on Monday, November 11, 2013
Made in the USAEvery day we field questions about where a product is made, and to help make things easier we've been slowly including the icon on the left to quickly let people know which products are made here in the States. To help your search easier, here is a quick list of most of our American made products.

First, I want to start with the bedding. Our Allergy Armor dust mite covers are now almost entirely made here in the U.S. In fact, most of these covers are cut, sewn, and packed right here at our Atlanta location. In addition to covers, things like blankets, pillows, and Nearly All Allergy Armor Bedding is Made in the USAcomforters are also made right here. These include, Other Allergy Armor products are in the process of transitioning to being produced here, so some of the bedding is made here as sizes run out of stock, and we pick up production here. Other products are partially made here or certain components are fabricated here, like the free allergy cover that comes with your Memory Foam pillow or the stretch-zip cover that is included with your Memory Foam Mattress Topper.

Aside from the products we make ourselves, many of our vendors manufacture right here in the United States, and a few products are made by local companies for our brand. Lastly, some products are more broadly made in North America or have either assembly done here or raw material for the products done here. These would include Primaloft, Ogallala, & Snoozer bedding, Honeywell (Mexico), AllerAir, and Amairicare air purifiers as well as 3M furnace filters.

As you can see, a wide variety of the products you'll find on our site and in our catalog are sourced right here in the United States. This is important to us for a few reasons. First, it Trend of the last half century - manufacturing following cheaper labor helps to keep American manufacturing alive. American manufacturing was the backbone of a growing middle class during the middle of the 20th century. However, as manufacturing traditionally follows cheap labor markets, we've seen a steady outflow of these jobs and industries overseas. Secondly, we want to manufacture here in the U.S. as it gives us better control over the product and allows us to make custom products for those who request it. Quality control of imported products can be nightmare. Why do you think so many brick and mortar retailers have opened the proverbial flood gates when it comes to returns? Aside from being competitive, when quality is hit or miss a generous return policy is key to not alienating people who are getting "duds" or "lemons". Many times, if something goes out of stock, we will specially make your bedding that day and avoid the delay of waiting until our next scheduled production run of your items. Finally, this is also a response to you - our reader, our customer. Demand for U.S. made products has increased, and we try our best to source American to meet your needs.

This doesn't mean that American manufacturing "is back" or that this isn't done without challenges. It has been difficult to find some of the materials we need. With the ability to produce raw textiles nearly completely gutted from the States, it has been a challenge to find a U.S. source for some of the materials we need in the specific raw sizes. Fortunately, there are a few producers still based here in the States who are not only hanging on but seeing a bit of a resurgence.

In addition to the flag, you can also check in the Product Features or the Customer Questions sections. I'm pretty sure that even from this list, I've missed at least a handful. If you don't see the country of origin listed on the page, submit a question, and I, or one of our staffers, generally answer within 12-24 hours. Happy Hunting!

Author: Kevin Gilmore

Posted by kevvyg on Friday, September 27, 2013
One of my favorite parts of my home is my bed. I'm very keen on my pillows, sheets and comforters (because they're what help me get all of my beauty sleep!). However I'm well aware that my bedding was likely made with pesticides, chemical treatments ("wrinkle free" or "stain resistant"), dyes and flame retardants. Though things as regular as bedding do not affect me or my health, for someone with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) or very sensitive skin, the residue of these Raw Cottonchemicals can make sleep a real struggle.

For many with MCS, being particular about bedding isn't an option, it's a necessity. Most bedding is not organic and can irritate sensitive skin, causing allergic reactions, dermatitis, itching, swelling or worse. All of these things can leave you feeling tired instead of refreshed and reenergized in the mornings.

Though most are familiar with organic food, what's the deal with - organic - cotton? Merriam Webster defines organic as "of, relating to, yielding, or involving the use of food produced with the use of feed or fertilizer of plant or animal origin without employment of chemically formulated fertilizers, growth stimulants, antibiotics, or pesticides". So now let's take a look at cotton.

Cotton, a fibrous plant of the Gossypium genus is akin to okra and cacao and has been internationally domesticated for centuries, from Australia to Alabama. However, organic commercial cotton production has been on the rise for the past decade. Unlike the majority of cotton currently grown in the U.S., organic commercial cotton is not genetically modified. It is also grown in an organic environment meaning it is often manually cultivated, grown in organic soil, and not treated with fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides.

Luckily, AchooAllergy.com offers a variety of bedding made from 100% certified organic cotton to help make your bed as heavenly (and healthy!) as possible:
  • Allergy Armor Organic Cotton BlanketsAllergy Armor Organic Cotton Sheets - GOTS certified, these 300 TC sheets are soft and comfortable. Lacking chemical finishers and dyes, you can find sheets for any size bed in basic, cream or white colors, which match any bedding.
  • Allergy Armor Organic Cotton Blankets - We are proud to say these blankets are cut, sewn, and packed right here in our Atlanta location. They are soft and lightweight yet warm, making a great layer for your bed, anytime of the year. Available in 2 weights, 100 and 120, each blanket is constructed from USDA certified organic cotton. Choose from either the crepe weave, which has a small tighter pattern, or the waffle weave which fluffs out to a thick and luxurious pattern after the first wash and dry. You can also select from four sizes (we even have blankets for the little ones!).
  • Allergy Armor Organic Allergy Covers - In Stock and With a New DesignAllergy Armor Organic Bedding Covers - Although we have not begun making our own organic pillows, we do have organic pillow and mattress covers, perfect for those coping with dust mite allergies as well as MCS and eczema. These covers have no finishes or coatings, and have an average pore size of less than 5 microns. Just slip these covers on your favorite pillow and mattress, then apply your organic sheets or pillowcases, and you're all set!
After spending some time upstairs enjoying the soft textures of our Allergy Armor products, I'm going to invest in some good quality blankets and sheets too! Sweet dreams!

For more information on the GOTS Certification behind our organic cotton sheets and the GOTS certified fabric for our mattress and pillow covers.

Author: Rachel Power

Posted by kevvyg on Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Over the next several weeks, we are going to introduce you to other members in the allergy, asthma and eczema community. As the first in our guest series, Lisa Rutter is the founder of the No Nuts Moms Group. From her experiences in dealing with a food allergic son, she started the group as a way for parents with food allergies to connect and support each other. - K.G.

My name is Lisa Rutter, and I am the founder of a group called No Nuts Moms Group. This is a group dedicated to raising food allergy awareness. We offer many resources on our site including a Support Group and Forum on Facebook for all food allergic families from all over the world as well as over 40 local groups throughout the United States, with one in Canada and one in Australia. Our groups are private, free to join, and are a wonderful way to stay connected with others in your area that are also dealing with life threatening food allergies. Within the local groups, we discuss things like, local events, schools, and safe restaurants. This is also a great place to lean on each other or let off some steam and not feel judged for your feelings. Food allergies can be very hard on families and it is nice to have a place to go where everyone understands these challenges. We also encourage outings and play dates within our local groups. This past Easter, our No Nuts Moms Group of Michigan hosted our second annual food free Easter Egg Hunt, with the Easter Bunny making a special appearance. Our Michigan group is also having a food free Halloween event coming up in October.

When I originally started this group in 2011, I was searching for local support and other playmates for my peanut and tree nut allergic child. I felt alone and overwhelmed, and I really wanted to find other moms and kids that both my son and I could relate to. The group has turned out to be so much more to my family and me. I have met so many amazing people and have had so many great things happen to me on this journey. I am now the Co-Leader of FACES of Michigan, which is a local support group for food allergic families. Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) recently recognized No Nuts Moms Group as an official support group. This was a great accomplishment and a very proud moment for me. Within the past two years, I have also been invited to educational and informative summits by some of the top food allergy organizations out there, and our group is currently Jennifer Rutter, Founder of No Nuts Moms Group, and Her Family helping to get a bill passed that would allow schools to stock the life saving medication, epinephrine. This is something new for me, and I am very proud to help out in this effort.

I am very passionate about food allergies, and it is extremely rewarding to be able to help so many families. I often say that I have the best non-paying job out there! This community and my family fuel me to keep going, and I couldn’t do it without all of them. At the end of the day, I can honestly say that I am doing everything I can to make my son’s future brighter. We, as a family, have hope and will never let go of that.

If you have life-threatening food allergies or have a child with life-threatening food allergies, please visit our main website, No Nuts Moms Group to learn more about our support groups.

About the Author: Founder of No Nuts Moms Group and Co-Leader of FACES Michigan, Lisa Rutter is a 36 year-old mother of two. She, her husband and children all deal with environmental allergies, and one child has severe peanut and tree nut allergies.

Posted by KevvyG on Tuesday, September 03, 2013
Allergy Armor Ultra Allergy Bedding - 20% OffIf you've been meaning to try some of the best allergy bedding available, now is the time to save. For a limited time, all Allergy Armor pillow covers, mattress covers and duvet covers are 20% off.

As seen in Women's Health magazine, Allergy Armor Ultra features the smallest average pore size in the industry, 2.8 microns. This makes our allergy bedding covers one of the most effective ways to block the dust mite allergy and relieve night time coughing as well as morning time congestion and sneezing.

Common Household Dust MiteFor most people, dust mites are the common household allergen that can keep you from getting a good night's sleep. Found in everyone's pillow and mattress, dust mites are microscopic mites that are part of the reason why a mattress can double in weight after 8-10 years. Dust mite feces and their microscopic dead and decaying body parts are inhaled while you sleep. For asthmatics this often means a cough that starts soon after laying down for bed, while for those with allergies it often means morning time congestion, runny nose, watery eyes, sneezing or sinus pressure. Allergy Armor can help relieve these symptoms.

By blocking the allergen and keeping it trapped, Ultra mattress, pillow and comforter covers can help to keep this allergen out of the air you breathe at night. They go over your mattress or pillow and zip closed. Once installed, you put your regular sheets or pillow cases back on. Though you won't see them, you will likely notice a difference in how you sleep at night and how you feel in the morning. And unlike other bedding covers, Ultra is made right here in the USA. We cut, sew and package every piece of Allergy Armor Ultra right in our Atlanta location. And, once you buy, you're all set! A lifetime guarantee, means years of relieve and peace of mind.

There are sizes available to fit all mattress and pillow sizes. Invest in a better night's sleep and try Allergy Armor Ultra!

View Allergy Armor Ultra Pillow Covers
View Allergy Armor Ultra Mattress Covers or
View Allergy Armor Ultra Bedding

Author: K. Gilmore

Posted by Kevvyg on Thursday, August 29, 2013
chooAllergy.com 2013 Holiday Gift GuideWe've recently released our 2013 Holiday Gift Guide. Different from years past, this year's Guide is shorter, and more concise. It offers a few great products that would work well for the loved one dealing with allergies, asthma or MCS, but what makes it unique this year? These would be great gifts even for people who aren't coping with those things.

The focus this year was on utility. After careful review we hand selected a few items that not only help to better control your indoor environment, reduce allergens, and lessen reactions, but work just as well for anyone.

As an example, the Miele AutoEco demonstrates this dual purpose. Most people have vacuums or need a vacuum in their home, but people dealing with allergies, asthma or MCS, most vacuums can actually work to make their situations worse. Not so with the AutoEco. This versatile upright features Miele's AirClean System and uses the combination of a sealed system and 12-stage filtration to eliminate the microparticles and harmful allergens that can aggravates allergies and cause asthma attacks. The AutoEco is just one example of a product that is particularly helpful for allergies and asthma, but works well as a gift for anyone who wants a clean home!

As an added bonus, anyone looking to Buy American, has a wide variety to choose from amongst our Allergy Armor brand bedding. From comforters and mattress covers to pillows and blankets, the majority of our Allergy Armor bedding is made right here in our Atlanta location.

Available as a PDF, browse the Guide, and if you have any questions, feel free to contact us. Breathe easier as this Guide helps to make choosing the right gift this Holiday season, less of hassle.

AchooAllergy.com 2013 Gift Guide

Author: K. Gilmore

Posted by KevvyG on Tuesday, August 13, 2013
AchooAllergy Blog One of Best of 2013Once again, the AchooAllergy Blog is proud to be selected as one of the Best Allergy Blogs of 2013 by Healthline.com. Annually, Healthline.com selects a variety of allergy blogs that cover a wide range of different aspects of allergic disease, and for the second year in a row, the AchooBlog was chosen as one of the best on the web.

For nearly 8 years, the AchooAllergy Blog has been providing the latest in allergy and asthma information and products. From updates in new technology, testing, medication and procedures to highlighting how environmental control can effectively reduce allergens in your home and office, the AchooBlog has seen a litany of writers delve into a wide variety of topics.

I thought it might be interesting to step in the wayback machine and see our inaugural post from December 6th, 2005.

AchooBlog - 8 Years of Serving the Allergy, Asthma and MCS Communities

You cannot see it in this image, but the title/tagline of our blog used to be, "Achoo! The Blog - The Cutest Little Blog on the Web".

To see all of Healthline's Top Allergy Blogs.

Author: Kevin Gilmore

Posted by KevvyG on Friday, August 09, 2013
Dr. Lichtenberger, MDWe are constantly trying to bring you the most up-to-date and relevant information available. To help in doing so, we've began partnering with board certified doctors to answer some of the most frequently asked questions we receive about allergies and asthma.

With our first set of questions, I'd like to introduce Dr. Frank Lichtenberger, MD, PhD. He has taken the time to start of our series and answer three very common questions about allergies.

Allergy or Cold?

How can I tell if it's a cold or allergies?

Determining the difference between a cold or allergies is actually quite difficult, even for some seasoned professionals. Allergies and colds are very similar in terms of symptoms and presentation. Both colds and allergies can cause inflammation of the upper and lower respiratory tract, irritated eyes, cough, and fatigue. Colds are infections caused by viruses, and multiple people that share a common residence, classroom, or workplace can be affected at one time. This is similar to allergies, as many people in the same family, classroom or workplace can be allergic to the same things in the environment. Finally, antihistamines which are medicines used to treat allergies, are the most common ingredient in cold medicine because they are very good at reducing nasal inflammation.

So, how do we tell the difference? Colds tend to cause more "systemic inflammation," which include things like joint and muscle aches, nausea and stomach upset. Allergies tend to cause more itching, and thin watery secretions from the nose and eyes.

Asthma and Allergies Linked?

How are allergies and asthma related?

Asthma, eczema, and allergies (food and seasonal) can all be part of a condition called "Atopy." Atopy refers to a decision our immune system makes on how it is going to behave (fight off bacteria, viruses, cancer, or allergies.) Anyone can be allergic to something, but people that are allergic to lots of things have "Atopy." The same basic processes that cause people to get stuffy noses can cause lungs to develop asthma or skin to become itchy and scaly. We know that children with food allergies, and/or eczema are much more likely to develop asthma later in life.

Food Allergies and Environmental Allergies Related?

Can environmental and food allergies be related?

Absolutely. We know that people that have food allergies tend to also have environmental allergies. We don't actually know how the two are connected, but we know that there is a lot of "Cross Reactivity" between pollen and fruits and vegetables. Imagine that the Allergic System recognized allergic things based on a 4 letter code, and if it senses these "codes" in the environment it triggers an allergy. Now imagine that the alphabet only has 20 letters instead of 26, and animal, plant, fungal, and viral particles all had their codes written with these letters, but in very different languages from one another. The plant language, using only 20 different letters with MILLIONS of plants, has some redundancies. For example: some pollen from the Birch family had the code "BRCH," which was similar to the apple fruit's code "BCRH." Because they are very similar, the Allergic System will trigger the birch reaction when it senses the apple's code. This is what we call "oral allergy syndrome" where people think they are allergic to fruits or vegetables when in reality their Allergic System is just over reacting a little bit. Other similarities exist between dust mites and shellfish, and ragweed and melons.

Do you have questions you would like answered? Submit them to us via the FAQ form on every product page, email them using blog@achooallergy.com, send them to us via our live chat or send us something via snail mail. The most relevant and intriguing we'll select to be answered.

Author: Kevin Gilmore

Tags: Allergies
Posted by KevvyG on Wednesday, August 07, 2013
A recent article in Women's Health magazine online outlined some simple home products that can help control allergies by reducing allergens at home and work. Allergy Armor Ultra Bedding came in at the top of the list.

Allergy Armor Ultra is our exclusive line of allergy relief bedding. Specially constructed to block allergens, like the dust mites that inhabit everyone's mattress and pillows, the Ultra fabric encases and protects bedding while keeping the dust mite allergen out of the air you breathe. For many people, when allergy bedding is paired up with other environmental control measures (like dusting & vacuuming more frequently and Allery Armor Ultra Bedding is 100% Made in the USAwashing your bedding once a week in hot water) there's a noticeable difference in how you sleep and how you feel in the morning. Unlike cheap imports or products that others label "Made in America" simply because 51% of the materials and construction was done here in the States, all of our Allergy Armor Ultra bedding products are cut, sewn and packaged here at our facility in Atlanta, constructed from fabric made here in the U.S. and shipped to you when you order. Best of all, while you might save a few bucks buying a cheap import from a big box store, none of those covers are backed by a lifetime warranty.

The Allergy Armor Ultra Pillow Was Also Featured on The DoctorsIn addition to the mattress and pillow covers, we've expanded our Ultra line of allergy bedding. While some have tried to duplicate it, none have succeeded in matching the quality and convenience of our Allergy Armor Ultra Pillow. With the shell of the pillow constructed from the Ultra barrier fabric, there's no need for a separate pillow cover. It's built right in! Machine washable and available in five sizes, each of these pillows is backed by a two year warranty.

More recently, we've responded to a concern from our customers. The duvet (comforter) covers, though effective, don't stop the comforter from shifting around inside. At times, you end up with the comforter all balled up inside the cover. So following the example we set with our pillow, we now offer an allergy relief comforter. With a shell constructed from Allergy Armor Ultra fabric, this comforter features sewn-through box construction, reinforced seams, a 3D corded edge, and tie in loops in each corner. Warm, durable and allergen-free the Ultra Comforter is the perfect addition to any bedroom, and with the sewn-in loops, you can easily use your decorative duvet cover without any worry of the comforter shifting or balling.

All Ultra bedding is machine washable and machine dry, so cleaning is as easy as washing a load of clothes. Each piece features the smallest average pore size in the industry, 2.8 microns, and provides effective, consistent protection from dust mites, pollen, dander, and other allergens than collect in your bedding. From pillow covers and mattress covers to pillow and even comforters, Allergy Armor Ultra has a product to fit all of your bedding needs.

While I do appreciate the author taking the time to put together the article, just as a note for readers, the AirPod was discontinued by Blueair a few years ago. For an inexpensive desktop air purifier, I would consider the compact Alen T100 or the popular Roomaid HEPA air purifier.

To read the full article from Women's Health.

Author: Kevin Gilmore

Posted by kevvyg on Thursday, June 27, 2013
Order Before July 1st and Be Entered to Win a $500 VISA Gift CardCotton - Not Amused with Bathtime, Even if I Use Ecology Works Pet ShampooJust a quick reminder, for the month of June all orders are entered into a drawing for a $500 VISA gift card. This promotion ends Sunday, so you only have a few days left to order and be entered.

On a side note, I would really like to have a $500 VISA gift card. It would go great with my trip back to Ohio to visit family or for my summer vacation trip to NYC. Sadly, no matter how many bottles of pet shampoo I purchase, I am not eligible. So while I can keep Cotton free of ticks and fleas while he bounces around our farm next week, no blinged out dog collar for him!

So whether you're stocking up on sunscreen for the your trip to the beach, choosing a HEPA air purifier to keep down indoor allergens, or looking for an efficient dehumidifier to remove some of the 93% humidity from the air in your crawlspace, (true story, 93% humidity yesterday morning in Atlanta) purchase before Sunday and you can have a chance to win a $500 gift card. Big Ferris Wheel - Myrtle Beach, SC That'll buy a lot of rides on a giant ferris wheel!


Now here's a picture of the giant ferris wheel. ---------------->

Author: K. Gilmore

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