Dust Mites – Pictures, Allergy Prevention, Symptoms, Treatment

Dust mites are microscopic, 8-legged creatures that are found in most homes. The creatures are not parasitic and do not bite. So one would wonder why they are a concern when it comes to health issues.

Dust mites cause people to have various allergic reactions. The symptoms include sneezing, watery eyes, nasal blockages, stuffy ears, eczema, and in some cases asthma. When you stir dust when you are cleaning, you will suffer these reactions. Many people have always said that they are allergic to dust, but it is actually the dust mites that cause the allergic reactions, and not the dust particles themselves. Dander from pets also causes allergic reactions and they are also found in dust.

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How can you find out if you’re allergic to dust mites?

A medical doctor specially trained to treat allergies, an allergist, will give you a proper assessment of whether you are allergic to dust mites. The allergen that causes this reaction is the feces of the dust mites, and some of their body fragments. These are usually so small that they float in the air when you stir up dust, thereby causing the reaction.

How to get rid of dust mites

The first thing to do is to reduce the population of the dust mites, and also reduce your exposure to dust. It is a very delicate method and requires constant vigil in order to reduce the allergic reactions.

Start off by lowering the humidity in your house. This can be a challenge in the warmer months but quite easy in the colder months. Air-conditioned houses have been found to have fewer dust mites than non-air-conditioned homes. You can also use an electric blanket for at least 8 hours a day to reduce the population of dust mites in the house.

You should also avoid all furry or feathered pets, and keep fish instead. The fur of pets will produce dander which is a food source for dust mites. If you must have one, then you should keep their sleeping quarters far from yours. You should use hardwood or vinyl in the home since these are easy to clean thereby clearing up all the dust mites.

You should avoid opening windows since this allows pollen to enter the home. Dust mites eat pollen, and this will increase their numbers.

You should also wash your beddings and clothes regularly using warm water. Laundering has been shown to greatly reduce the population of dust mites in the home. You can take blankets to the dry cleaner. All carpets should be steam-cleaned using shampoo in order to kill dust mites.

You should avoid furniture that will collect dust, such as over-stuffed and wool-fabric ones. You should sue washable curtains to cover your windows. Wall-to-wall carpeting cannot be removed for regular cleaning so you should not use it. It is best to wash carpets during the spring. You should also enclose pillows and mattresses in plastic sheeting so they do not collect dust mites.

Dust Management tips

If you want to reduce the populations of dust mites, you should do proper dust management.

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A vacuum cleaner is very important when it comes to reducing dust in your home. You should vacuum all surfaces and furniture on a regular basis in order to keep levels of dust mites low. A water vacuum cleaner picks up a wider range of dust particles and is preferable instead of the paper bag variety. There are special vacuum cleaners (HEPA) which have highly efficient filters and are designed specifically for people with allergies to dust mites. You should do a thorough vacuuming of the house at least once a week.

You should dust all furniture before you begin vacuuming so that all the dust falls on the floor. You should dust with a damp cloth which will not cause the duct to float in the air. You can reduce the number of airborne particles by up to 93% by spraying dusting liquid or furniture polish before you begin dusting.

You can use a HEPA air filter which will help reduce the number of dust particles in the air. Ion generating filters, which charge the particles in the air, are not as efficient as HEPA filters when it comes to removing dust from the air. Ion-generating filters produce a lot of ozone. The ozone irritates the lungs and one can start having chest pains, soughing, shortness of breath, and irritation of the throat. If you have chronic respiratory complications such as asthma, they may be exacerbated by the ozone released by these filters. If you find a filter that talks about “energized oxygen” or “pure air” then they are referring to ozone.

With these steps, you can ensure that the population of dust mites in your home will be low, and you will get a reprieve from the allergic reactions.

Dust Mites Pictures

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