House dust mites are found in most homes. To eliminate dust mite allergens, first, take actions to reduce dust mite populations and second, reduce exposure to dust. No one method has been found for reducing mites and relieving allergy suffering. |
Eliminating dust from the environment is important in reducing allergens in sensitive people. Getting rid of allergy-inducing dust mites and other allergy-inducing constituent of dust is related to eliminating dust from the environment.
The most important tool for managing house dust mites is the vacuum cleaner. Regular, thorough vacuuming of carpets, furniture, textiles and other home furnishings such as draperies will help keep dust mite populations low. Avoid wet mopping because it increases moisture in the air. Where wet mopping is necessary, as in kitchens and bathrooms, vacuum thoroughly first. Vacuums with a water filter are preferable to those with a disposable paper bag because a water vacuum removes a greater range of particle sizes than paper-bag types. There are a number of vacuums with highly efficient filters designed for use by people with allergies to dust. It is better to vacuum thoroughly once a week rather than lightly on a daily basis. Vacuum mattresses and padded furniture thoroughly, 20 minutes for each mattress is not too long. Dust furniture before you vacuum so the dust has time to settle on the floor, where it can be picked up by the vacuum. Special dust cloths or other cleaning implements that are treated chemically to hold rather than scatter dust may be helpful. You may also wish to use an electrostatic precipitator to help reduce small particles in the air.
It is best to do everything possible to avoid hypersensitivity to house dust mites. People who have perennial rhinitis, inflamed mucous membrane of the nose, or are allergic to house dust mites should try to adapt their homes.
* Have as little furniture as possible in which mites can live. * Clean walls, woodwork and floors with wet cloths. The floor can be polished. * Only use rugs that can be washed once a week. * Use bedding that can be washed often, cotton sheets, washable bottom sheets and synthetic blankets or duvets. Don't use woollen blankets or quilts. * Make sure your chairs are made of wood or plastic. * If you can, use plastic curtains and dust them daily. * Use wet cloths and a vacuum cleaner with a no bag vortex and allergen filter to clean the house thoroughly, preferably every day, but at least twice a week. * Avoid dust traps like teddy bears, cushions, dried flowers, bric-a-brac and toys. * Wash bedding etc at a temperature of at least 60°C to kill the house dust mites. * Leave bedding, duvets, pillows and mattress hanging outside for an hour every day or as often as practical. * Put duvets and pillows in plastic bags and put them in the freezer for 24 hours at least once a month. * You may want to sleep on a cheap mattress that you can exchange for a new one at least every six months. * Dust mites hate dry and cold air, so try to air the house every day and don't use an air humidifier, which will only make matters worse. If the lower edge of the window is moist when you wake up in the morning, there is too much humidity in the air. * Do not spray the house, it may worsen your symptoms. * Do not touch dusty objects like books and old clothes. * When you are likely to be exposed to substances that give you a reaction, eg when you are house cleaning, you should wear a mask. * Don't allow smoking in the house.
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