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Declare War on House Dust Mites

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The dust mite gets its name from where it originates from; household dust. Its primary food source is dust, consisting mainly of human skin cells. This makes them a perfect housemate for humans. Unfortunately, their existence in the home brings with them many health problems for us. Dust mites have been linked to many dermatological and respiratory allergies in humans, such as eczema and asthma. This can cause symptoms such as an itchy runny nose, skin rashes, and issues with breathing such as wheezing and coughing. There are however there are things that we can do to stop these creatures from invading our homes. Dust mites are often found in textiles such as mattresses, bed linen, furniture and carpets. To stop dust mites from invading your home simply create a less appealing atmosphere in these spaces. There are several ways to do this. Homify has done the research and found the top ways to declare war on house dust mites.

Tips for Bedroom

In order to reduce the allergic reactions to dust mites, it is important to eradicate as many dust mites as possible. As allergic reactions are dose related, the fewer dust mites that are in your home, the less severe the allergic reaction will be. There are many things that you can do to reduce the dust mite population in your house. The bedroom is a popular place to find dust mites. The bedroom is warm, humid and fully of dust. To reduce dust mite numbers cover mattresses, pillows and quilts with dust mite resistant covers. Wash sheets and pillowcases in water hotter than 55 degrees Celsius. Wash blankets and quilts regularly, every two months. Consider using synthetic pillows rather than feather pillows as they can be washed and do not accumulate dust as easily.

Where Do They Come from and Where Can I Find Them?

Dust mites appear naturally in the environment. As they absorb moisture from the atmosphere for their survival, they are more plentiful in areas of higher humidity. Due to their need for moisture and warmth, dust mites tend to live in areas where there is a higher chance of moisture and heat. This includes textiles such as mattresses, bedding upholstered furniture and carpets. Dust mites also need to rely on a food source for their survival. As the main source of food for dust mites is dust, consisting of human skin cells, they tend to be found close to where we spend most of our time. When looking for dust mites look around bedrooms and living areas. Their favourite places to live will be around beds and bedding, rugs and blankets. In the living areas look around sofas, rugs, carpets and arm chairs.

What they Trigger

How do these tiny bugs affect our lives? Unlike other bugs such as fleas or bed bugs, dust mites do not affect us by biting. They create an allergic reaction through secretions and faeces, which contain particular proteins. When inhaled these proteins can trigger allergic reactions in people who are susceptible. These reactions can be different in every person, although they tend to affect the respiratory system and skin in the majority of cases. Some of these reactions can include itchy nose and eyes, runny nose, skin rashes, coughing and wheezing. In more extreme cases people can find it difficult to breathe and have a tight feeling in their chest. There are now allergy tests that can be done to find out whether you are allergic to dust mites. If you are allergic to dust mites it is important to reduce  dust from your home.

Avoid Textiles

One of the best ways to fight a war on dust mites in your home is to reduce the number of places where they can live. As one of their favourite places to live is in the warmth and humidity of textiles, it makes sense to reduce the number of textiles in your home. This means carpets, rugs and mats. These are areas where dust mites are commonly found. Consider instead tiles or floorboards that can be swept and mopped to remove all dust mites. Upholstered furniture is another favourite place for dust mites. Consider instead leather, vinyl, plastic or wood furniture. Finally consider replacing those heavy curtains with venetian blinds or external shutters. These will definitely keep the dust mites out. These beautiful textiles are from Tuni Interiors

Tips for Proper Ventilation

As dust mites cannot drink to hydrate, they rely on the moisture in the air to survive. One way to eradicate dust mites from your house is to reduce this moisture in the air, or humidity. There are several ways to reduce the humidity in the home. One of the most important is to ensure you have a well ventilated home. Be sure to have floor and wall insulation. Ensure that there is an adequate flow of air through the house. Avoid evaporative coolers as these will increase the humidity in your house. In extreme circumstances it may be necessary to use a dehumidifier. This will ensure that the humidity in the house remains at a level that will be intolerable to dust mites.

Tips for Proper Cleaning

One of the best ways to reduce the effect of dust mites in a house is to ensure that the house is clean. It is not only the living dust mites that can cause problems for those allergic to them, but also the dead mites and mite faeces. It is important that these are also removed from the house. To do this ensure that homes are vacuumed weekly. Be sure to include areas such as the seams of mattresses and upholstered furniture. Rugs and mats should be washed regularly and placed outside in the sunshine to dry. Use a damp cloth or electrostatic material to clean hard surfaces of dust rather than a feather duster to avoid dust being released into the air. In this way the dust mites will be removed more often and more effectively. For more inspiration see How do I Clean and Maintain My Kitchen Equipment.

What to do During the Holidays

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Gllamor Fabric sofa


The holidays are usually the time when we spend more time at home. It makes sense therefore that we prepare our homes at this time. It may also be the case that holidays are spent in the country, in a house that has been closed up for a considerable amount of time. It is therefore important to ensure that we deal effectively with the dust mites. Start by dealing with the textiles in the house. Ensure that clothes that have been stored are washed properly. Wash, and if possible steam clean items such as carpets, furniture and curtains to ensure the removal of all dust. Vacuum all floors weekly to ensure that the dust mites are kept away during the holiday period.  Finally clean the beds, bed linen and pillows thoroughly. This is a popular place to find dust mites. 

Dust mites occur naturally everywhere. Although they do not bite like many other bugs we find around our homes, they can cause serious problems for those who are allergic to them. These allergies are often seen in the respiratory and skin of allergy sufferers. It is important in for these people to reduce the dust mites in a home. There are several ways to do this; avoid textiles in the home, as dust mites often live in these areas, ensure the house is properly ventilated, and make sure the house is regularly cleaned to remove dust and dust mites. These are just a few tips for a dust mite free home. For more inspiration see Start the New Year Fresh and Clean. 

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