Do Down Comforters Affect People With Asthma?

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Down comforters can many times affect people with asthma in a negative way. If a person's asthma attack is triggered by animal fur or dander, down pillows and comforters should be avoided.

Down Comforters

  • Down is a stuffing type commonly used in heavy coats and comforters, known to provide some of the best insulation for cold weather use. Down typically refers to the feathers on the underside of a goose or duck. While these provide a great amount of warmth when stuffed into the lining of comforters, these are still animal feathers, and can trigger a reaction caused by the feathers themselves or even the dander or scent of the down. This makes it important for asthmatics to avoid down whenever possible.

Asthma-Friendly Bedding Options

  • Instead of using a comforter or pillow with down stuffing, choose a cotton fill or polyester comforter. A fair medium in pricing would be a 50/50 blend of cotton and polyester fill. When making a purchase, read the package label to find out what the stuffing is made of. Anything that contains feathers, goose, duck, down or even a down blend should be avoided at all costs if you are an asthmatic or are shopping for an asthmatic.

Steps to Take When Traveling

  • Some hotels will have bedding with down stuffing. Read tag labels. Your best option would be to bring your own pillow at a minimum, which you will be breathing closest to while you sleep. This also goes for staying at a friend's home, a cabin, or any other place that requires you to sleep with unfamiliar bedding. While bringing your own blanket can sometimes cause a hassle and be very bulky to travel with, a lightweight fleece blanket will often keep you warm throughout the night, and can be used in place of a down comforter if need be.

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