I quickly found through some research that bed bugs can be killed in a dryer cycle of at least 5 minutes. I am happy to say that I have never had a bed bug problem, but what about dust mites? They are in most homes if we know it or not, and pillows are one of their favorite places to hide out. Looks like the answer is yes, but with a 10 minute recommended cycle. I like to be cautious so I usually run my pillows and other fluffy goods for a full 30 minute dryer cycle on the hottest setting.
The dryer seems to be great for creepy crawly creatures which is a bonus, but what about cold and flu germs? According to Dr. Laundry the results are mixed. The dryer cycle killed some germs like e. coli, but not others were just reduced, not completely killed. Something is better then nothing so I think I will keep up with my habit, and hope for the best during this years cold and flu season.