Are you experiencing sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, itchy skin, itchy throat, and a runny nose? Either you’ve got a cold or a horrible dust mite allergy. Being allergic to dust mites is a pretty common phenomenon.
If your allergy is too severe, you may experience asthma symptoms as well. If your chest begins to hurt and you start wheezing, it’s time to grab your cleaning supplies and go over your entire home.
We can tell you which areas you need to tackle. Check out this guide to learn how clean your home and make the environment unwelcoming for those pesky dust mites.
What Are Dust Mites?
Before you can clean against dust mites, it’s important that you get to know your foe a little. They are microscopic insect-like creatures who feed on the dead skin of animals and humans alike.
The average human being sheds around 40,000 skin cells each day. That can feed a lot of mites (millions, in fact) which is why they gather in homes in such large numbers.
They live anywhere you shed skin cells so your bedding, furniture, rugs, and your children’s stuffed toys. It’s important that you clean these things regularly if you want to control the dust mite population in your house.
Dust mite bites aren’t something that you have to worry about but they can cause rashes and again, horrible allergic reactions if you don’t stay on top of them.
1. Clean Your Bedding
You spend around 8 hours in your bed each night. You shed a lot of skin during that time which makes your bedding an ample feeding ground for dust mites. The only way to control their numbers is to wash your sheets, comforter, and pillowcases once a week, at least.
Run your bedding through a hot wash and dry cycle. The extreme heat will be more than enough for killing dust mites. Your mattress is another hurdle you’ve got to take care of.
You can’t exactly take it off your bed frame and throw it in the wash. You can use a special allergen sanitizer vacuum to get the job done. They emit an ultraviolet light that will reduce dust mite numbers.
2. Invest in a Mattress Cover
If you can’t afford an allergen-destroying vacuum cleaner, there’s one more method that you can try out to lower the population of dust mites on your mattress. Pick up a mattress cover.
Doing so will limit their ability to get to you and cut them off from their food source. It won’t take long for them to begin starving to death.
Of course, you may have a few stragglers who can slip in through the seams of the cover. You can control that by covering the seams with a bit of tape.
3. Towels and Bathmats
Now that you’ve taken care of your bedroom, it’s time to move on to the bathroom. Dust mites are big fans of humidity so bathrooms aren’t off-limits to them despite the fact that you don’t spend too much time there.
As soon as you’ve gotten dried off after getting a shower, hang both your bathmat and towel up to dry. Of course, drying them out won’t be enough to detour dust mites. Wash them in hot water after you’ve used them a few times.
4. Your Children’s Stuffed Toys
Since your children both play and sleep with their stuffed toys on a normal basis, they aren’t safe from getting infested with dust mites. This being said, you’ll need to get your child to part with their favorite stuffy for at least a few hours each week so you can throw it in the wash.
If you can’t throw the stuffed animal in the wash due to strict care instructions, extreme cold can also kill dust mites. Place the toy in your freezer and keep it there for at least 24 hours.
5. Curtains, Carpets, and Furniture
Of course, the best way to control the dust mite population on your floors is to not have carpet. If you don’t have that luxury, then you should at least steam clean them every so often. The heat from the steam will help keep the dust mite numbers down.
If you use throw rugs, wash those on a normal basis. When it comes to furniture, try to opt for vinyl or leather. If you have a fabric couch invest in removal covers.
Drapes look nice but they do attract dust mites. You can’t wash the big heavy ones but you can vacuum them and treat them with an allergen spray.
The best way to get rid of any insect living in your home is to limit their food source. So, be sure to include dusting in your regular weekly cleaning schedule.
When you’re dusting use a wet cloth. The dry cloth will get rid of the appearance of dust but it will spread around the allergens instead of dispelling them.
7. Make the Environment Uncomfortable for Them
Nothing can thrive in an environment that’s not pleasing to them. Keep the temperature in your home to about 70 degrees. This is cool enough to be comfortable for you while being uncomfortable for the dust mites.
Again, dust mites love humidity. If things feel a bit stuffy in your house, open the windows, run your ceiling fans, or invest in a dehumidifier.
Kick Out Those Unwanted Dust Mites
Dust mites can get out of hand fast. If left unchecked they can cause horrible allergic reactions. This is especially true if you have asthma.
The good news is that all it takes is cleaning to control their population. The bad news is that it can take a lot of cleaning.
We can help you out with that. Contact us to get a price quote on our services.