One morning you wake up and your nose is runny, you’re sneezing and itchy, and you’re having breathing difficulties. At first you might think you’ve just picked up a virus or common allergy, but you could be suffering from a dust-mite allergy. Every home has dust mites, and they can cause a variety of health problems for people who are sensitive to them. Here are some facts about dust mites and how to reduce their presence in your home.
What is a dust mite? Dust mites are little bugs – so small that you can only see them with a microscope – that are related to spiders and ticks. They multiply quickly, especially in moist, humid places, and they eat particles of skin and dander. Dust mites are commonly found in bedding, carpeting and in your furniture upholstery. They don’t bite and are only harmful to people who are allergic to them.
What causes an allergic reaction to dust mites? The culprit in a dust-mite allergy is a protein found in the waste and the decaying bodies of dead mites. When dust containing those tiny particles is disturbed, it floats in the air and is inhaled. This disturbance occurs when you walk on carpet or rugs, vacuum carpeting and furniture, or shake out bedding.
Tips on Reducing Dust and Dust Mites
- Vacuum often with a vacuum cleaner that has a HEPA filter to remove dust from carpets, rugs and furniture. If you are allergic to dust mites, wear a filtering mask while cleaning.
- Wash bedding in hot water to remove dead skin particles.
- Cover mattresses and pillows in allergen-blocking covers.
- Avoid using brooms or feather dusters. Dusting with a damp cloth reduces the amount of dust that floats in the air.
- When cleaning, turn on your HVAC fan (the “on” control in your thermostat) to help filter disturbed dust particles.
- Remove carpeting if possible to reduce dust and dust mites.
- Install an air cleaning system to remove dust from the air in your home.
For more information about dust mites or any other HVAC issues, don’t hesitate to contact us at Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning. We provide quality HVAC services in the Greater Fresno area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Fresno, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about dust mites and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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