By Dr. Deanna Lites

DETROIT (WWJ) – Do you wake up refreshed and energetic — ready to start the day?

If not, a simple change in your bedroom might help says WWJ Health Reporter Dr. Deanna Lites and you may not have to look further than your bed to find the offender.

When was the last time you changed your pillow?

If you don’t know, well, there’s a good chance you’re not sleeping alone.

You may be sharing you pillow with dust mites. And it could be the reason you’re waking up with a stuffy nose or itchy eyes.

Dr. Jennifer Appleyard, an allergist with St. John Hospital in Detroit, says there’s an important distinction.

“People need to know the difference between dust itself as an irritant and dust mites are what people are allergic to,” says Appleyard.

There are ways to alleviate the problem.

Appleyard recommends topping your pillow with a pillow protector — changing the pillow and washing the lines in hot water and follow with a hot dry — especially, she says in the winter when the house is closed up.

As to when to replace your pillow?

Experts say between six months and two years depending on the type.

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