Boooooooooo. Your body gets scared too!
It’s the spookiest time of the year. Many are thrilled to dress up, or watch scary movies. It's fun to get scared every once in a while, but there are spooky creatures called "dust mites" that may be scaring your body all year round. That's not so fun. If you're allergic to dust mites you know what I'm talking about.
Some bodies prefer to avoid these spooky creatures at all costs. And if dust mites cross their paths, they can get really scared and overreact in different ways (like sneezing or wheezing). All this can be pretty uncomfortable and can make cleaning routines pretty difficult. It's time to scare those mites away!
What are dust mites?
Dust mites are very small creatures that are invisible to the eye. They have 8 legs, and their size can be around 1/10 the size of an ant.
Where do dust mites live?
Picture this: an old town and a cowboy stepping on a dusty wooden floor. With each step, dust begins to rise... It stays in the air for a while but then settles down. Are you familiar with a scene like this one? We don’t need to be cowboys to have seen some dust in the air after walking inside a dusty room.
But dust mites don’t live there. They don’t stay in the air for long periods of time. They don’t fly. The like to settle down comfortably on surfaces like:
- Upholstered Furniture
- Bed sheets
They’ll always find their way to these cozy places, but sometimes you can also find them in other areas around the house.
The climate they like: According to the American Asthma Association, they love high temperatures (68°F to 77°F) and high humidity levels (70% to 80%).
How they survive
They eat many things we find in the dust. Their preferred are:
- Human skin flakes
- Pet Dander
What do they drink? They don’t drink water. They absorb moisture from the air, so they absolutely love humidity. Without it, they can’t survive.
Fact: “4 out of 5 homes in the United States have detectable levels of dust mite allergen in at least one bed.” Lung.org
Who they can harm and how
Do dust mites bite? Contrary to what some people may think, they don’t bite. Some people’s bodies can be allergic to them or their droppings and, therefore, overreact when in their presence. Some can experience allergic rhinitis, asthma, or their skin can get affected too.
When they can harm you
If we talk about your respiratory system, allergies can be triggered:
- After sweeping
- After vacuuming
- After dusting
- When walking or moving around
- While you’re sleeping
If you have atopic dermatitis your skin can suffer when it comes in direct contact them, or better said, with their digestive enzymes (that's what they use to break down their food).
All this definitely doesn’t make cleaning easy. You may be thinking: "So, how do I clean dust if it makes me sneeze when I’m cleaning?" Here are some tricks you can use:
14 Tricks to Scare the Mites Away
Even if you don’t want to, sometimes you have to attend a spooky party with dust mites (you can’t avoid dust cleaning forever).
Here are some tips to make dust cleaning a bit more enjoyable:
1. Wear a mask
2. Wear gloves
3. Use some moisturizer
4. Halloween Entertainment Party Allocation (HEPA)
5. No feathers allowed
6. Use microfiber costumes
7. Get some fresh air
It will take around 1-2 hours for dust mites left in the air to settle back down. So go outside for some fresh air after you clean. If you don’t want to go out, you can keep your mask on while they settle.
8. Brooms are not allowed
9. Prepare your body
10. Clean ghost costumes
Look neat! Make sure to wash your sheets regularly (once per week) and also vacuum your duvets or comforters twice per week.
11. Ask someone else to take your place
12. Costumes with no shoes are great
13. Bring only the necessary
14. Apply some “antiperspirant”
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Use information at your own risk: The information presented is intended for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never disregard professional medical or home improvement advice. The information and suggestions should be discussed with a professional. You are responsible for independently verifying the information if you intend to rely upon or use it in any way. You use all information at your own risk.