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Things that Go “BITE” in the Night

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Once upon a time the saying “Sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite” was a cute and loving way of saying “sleep safe”.  Today it is more of a warning, as bed bugs have invaded and the United States is facing a national infestation.  According to Smart Style Living, “The incidence of bed bug infestation has risen 500% in the last few years alone, and they’re not just in dirty hotels – they’re at the 5-star ones as well and swarming the public places you visit every day.”  They’re in clothing stores, movie theaters and the public places we visit daily.

Bed bugs are small pests that feed on human and animal blood, causing itchy and irritating bites. The bugs can be as small as the size of a pinhead or as big as a penny.  Bed bugs are nocturnal and avoid light, therefore they come out at night to feed off people or animals.

According to the EPA, identifying a bed bug infestation is not as simple as seeing bites on your skin.  Bites on the skin are a poor indicator of a bed bug infestation. Bed bug bites can be misidentified, which gives the bugs time to spread to other areas of the house. Bed bug bites can look like bites from other insects (such as mosquitoes or spiders), rashes (such as eczema or fungal infections), or even hives. Some people do not react to bed bug bites at all.

A far more accurate way to identify a possible infestation is to look for physical signs of bed bugs. For example, spots on bedding, as described below, are one of the earliest and most accurate methods.

When cleaning, changing bedding, or staying away from home, look for:

  • Dark spots (about this size: •), which are bed bug excrement and may “bleed” on the fabric like a marker would
  • Eggs and eggshells, which are tiny (about 1mm) and white
  • Skins that nymphs shed as they grow larger
  • Live bed bugs
  • Rusty or reddish stains on bed sheets or mattresses caused by bed bugs being crushed

When not feeding, bed bugs hide in a variety of places. Around the bed, they can be found near the piping, seams and tags of the mattress and box spring, and in cracks on the bed frame and head board.

For more information on bed bugs, visits the EPA Website HERE.

To protect yourself, your family and your organic mattress and pillows from invaders like bed bugs invest in an organic cotton mattress and pillow barrier covers.  Our barrier covers are made from tightly-woven 100% certified organic cotton and closes with a heavy-duty zipper. Unlike similar synthetic products, our soft, breathable organic cotton barriers offer a more healthful sleep. Available in different depths and sizes to meet your specific needs.

OMI Mattress Barrier Covers Prices Starting at $220

OMI Pillow Barrier Covers Prices Starting at $69

For more information on the OMI products, visit our website HERE.

Debuting the Lago Nouveau and the Wave Pillow Top

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 Introducing OMI’s two newest products, which debuted at the Summer Las Vegas Market: the Lago Nouveau and the Wave pillow top.

Lago Nouveau

The OrganicPedic Lago Nouveau is a two-sided, 10” sculpted-surface mattress made with a 6” core of firm 100%-natural rubber latex under an internal, soft, sculpted-surface layer, and covered with our innovative new knit cushion quilting.

Features and Benefits

  • Sculpted surface offers pressure-point relief and increases air circulation
  • Pillow top built into the internal mattress design
  • Motion-absorbing construction
  • Innovative knit cushion quilting
  • Eco-Wool fill naturally regulates body temperature
  • Naturally mold, mildew, and dust-mite resistant

MSRP (mattress only): twin $3695• full $4395 • queen $4495 • king $5995

Foundation sold separately

Wave Pillow Top 

The new Wave pillow top is made of 3” of 100%-natural rubber latex encased in certified organic cotton knit fabric. The Wave features a sculpted surface to provide comfort for sleepers with pressure-point issues. This comfortable and resilient natural-rubber pillow top provides added surface depth for sleepers, but does so with more firmness than the wool toppers without reducing the support of the mattress.

MSRP: twin $785• full $945 • queen $1145 • king $1295

 Both the Lago Nouveau and the Wave pillow top are now available.  For more information on new OMI Products, click HERE

How are you sleeping?

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National Sleep Foundation 2012 Bedroom Poll discovered that most consumers are not getting good sleep every night.

When polled the participants were asked, “How many nights can you say, I had a good nights sleep?”

Every night/ almost every night           34%

A few nights a week                                 42%

A few nights a month                              12%

Rarely                                                          10%

Never                                                            2%

The survey shows us how only one-third of consumers say they are getting a good night sleep every night or almost every night.  The big number that gets overlooked is the two-thirds of consumers that are not getting a good night sleep.  And almost one in four consumers are getting a good night sleep just a few nights a month, or less.

What category does your sleep fall into? If you are like 2 out of every 3 consumers that does not get a good night sleep every night, it is time to consider getting a comfortable bed that allows for proper support and comfort.  Visit an OMI retailer to help you get a great night of sleep every night, check HERE for locations near you.

If a full night of sleep is not reason enough, take these health benefits into account:

Major Benefits

Better Health

A study found that C-reactive protein, which is associated with heart attack risk, was higher in people who got six or fewer hours of sleep a night. Inflammation is linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, and premature aging. Research indicates that people who get less sleep—six or fewer hours a night—have higher blood levels of inflammatory proteins than those who get more.

Better Weight Control

An earlier bedtime can help boost your diet.  Researchers at the University of Chicago found that dieters who were well rested lost more fat—56% of their weight loss—than those who were sleep deprived, who lost more muscle mass. (They shed similar amounts of total weight regardless of sleep.)  Dieters in the study also felt hungrier when they got less sleep.

Safer Driving

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported in 2009 that being tired accounted for the highest number of fatal single-car run-off-the-road crashes due to the driver’s performance—even more than alcohol!   “Sleepiness is grossly underrated as a problem by most people, but the cost to society is enormous,” Dr. Rapoport says.

“Sleeplessness affects reaction time and decision making.” Insufficient sleep for just one night can be as detrimental to your driving ability as having an alcoholic drink.

 Improve Your Memory

Your mind is surprisingly busy while you snooze. During sleep you can strengthen memories or “practice” skills learned while you were awake in a  process called consolidation. “If you are trying to learn something, whether it’s physical or mental, you learn it to a certain point with practice,” says Dr. Rapoport, who is an associate professor at NYU Langone Medical Center. “But something happens while you sleep that makes you learn it better.” In other words if you’re trying to learn something new—whether it’s Spanish or a new tennis swing—you’ll perform better after sleeping.

Remember to visit an OMI retailer soon to find a mattress that will not only make you sleep soundly, but safely.

Summer 2012 Las Vegas Market

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OMI is on a roll!  We are gearing up to introduce some innovative new products at Market.  The World Market Center houses the OMI showroom allowing customers and retailers to see and feel our entire OrganicPedic line.   OMI will be debuting new products so stay tuned on the OMI Blog for more information.

Mark your calendars and join us at the Las Vegas Market, July 30th through August 3rd, at Showroom C-1515.

For more information, call the OMI Sales office at 1-800-951-9196 or visit our website HERE.

Memorial Day: A Time to Remember

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To our brave service members past and present: we thank you for your service and dedication. We are thinking of you and the loved ones we have lost this Memorial Day.

And for those families awaiting the return home of your soldiers, this is what you have to look forward to:

Makers of Flame Retardants Manipulate Research Findings

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Did you know that federal law requires mattresses to pass vigorous open-flame flammability tests?  These tests are usually passed with the use of chemical flame retardants.  It is a proven fact that chemical flame-retardants offgas volatile organic compounds (VOCs).   Knowing that, are these flame retardants really helping? An article written by Sam Roe and Patricia Callahan for the Chicago Tribune discusses how research was manipulated by chemical companies to increase the need for the flame retardants.  Included is an interview with the study’s lead author, Vytenis Babrauskas.

Here is an excerpt from the article:

 CHICAGO — Twenty-five years ago, scientists gathered in a cramped government laboratory and set fire to specially designed chairs, TVs and electrical cables packed with flame retardants For the next half-hour, they carefully measured how much the chemicals slowed the blaze.

It was one of the largest studies of its kind, and the chemical industry seized upon it, claiming the results showed that flame retardants gave people a 15-fold increase in time to escape fires.

Manufacturers of flame retardants would repeatedly point to this government study as key proof that these toxic chemicals – embedded in many common household items – prevented residential fires and saved lives.

But the study’s lead author, Vytenis Babrauskas, told the Chicago Tribune that industry officials have “grossly distorted” the findings of his research, which was not based on real-world conditions. The small amounts of flame retardants in typical home furnishings, he said, offer little to no fire protection.

“Industry has used this study in ways that are improper and untruthful,” he said.

The misuse of Babrauskas’ work is but one example of how the chemical industry has manipulated scientific findings to promote the widespread use of flame retardants and downplay the health risks, a Tribune investigation shows. The industry has twisted research results, ignored findings that run counter to their aims and passed off biased, industry-funded reports as rigorous science.

As a result, the chemical industry successfully distorted the basic knowledge about toxic chemicals that are used in consumer products and linked to serious health problems, including cancer, developmental problems, neurological deficits and impaired fertility.

Industry has disseminated misleading research findings so frequently that they essentially have been adopted as fact. They have been cited by consultants, think tanks, regulators and Wikipedia, and have shaped the worldwide debate about the safety of flame retardants.

One series of studies financed by the chemical industry concluded that flame retardants prevent deadly fires, reduce pollutants and save society millions of dollars.

The main basis for these broad claims? A scientific report so obscure that it is available only in Swedish.

When the Tribune obtained a copy and translated it, the report revealed that many of industry’s wide-ranging claims can be traced to information regarding just eight TV fires in western Stockholm more than 15 years ago.

Although industries often try to spin scientific findings on the safety and effectiveness of their products, the tactics employed by flame retardant manufacturers stand out.

Tom Muir, a Canadian government research analyst for 30 years, called the broad claims based on the eight Stockholm TV fires “the worst example I have ever seen of deliberate misinformation and distortion.”

The American Chemistry Council, the leading trade group for the industry, said flame retardants are safe products that help protect life and property. “ACC’s work is grounded in scientific evidence, as we believe regulatory decisions related to chemistry must be evaluated on a scientific basis,” the trade group said in a written statement.

But when the Tribune asked the trade group to provide research that showed flame retardants are effective, the council initially provided only one study – the one Babrauskas wrote and now says is being distorted by industry.

The full article is available HERE.

OMI has developed a system that allows us to use Naturally Safer® wool as our only flame retardant. As a result, our mattresses are able to pass federal flame tests without the use of toxic chemicals or silica barriers.  To use any form of chemical flame retardant in our products would violate our ethical standards and integrity.  We stand by our purity so you and your family can have a safer place to rest your head at night.

Keep watching this blog for more information on mattress flammability laws and how we pass them.

Human Mattress Dominos

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Here’s a little video to bring some laughs to your Monday.

 850 people in New Orleans were knocked back onto mattresses in “human dominos” to break the world record for the number of people taking part.

Who says mattresses are just for sleeping?

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