No matter where you live, no matter how clean your house is, there’s a good chance you have dust mites. Dust mites are microscopic bugs that live on bedding, mattresses, furniture and carpeting. They thrive in humid environments and like to feed on dead skin and pet dander.
While you may never completely banish the unwanted guests from your home, you can make changes to reduce them.
In the Bedroom
Since your bedroom is ground zero for the little critters, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, consider using mattress and pillow covers. Zippered, dust-proof covers can be found at most bedding stores and have pores that are too small to let dust mites and their waste through.
When washing blankets and sheets, use the hottest water setting possible. This will kill dust mites. It is recommended that you wash bedding once a week.
Avoid having fabrics in your bedroom that cannot be washed regularly, such as down comforters and pillows, upholstered furniture and curtains.
Don’t make your bed in the morning! Dust mites love moisture so air out your bed during the day, which will reduce the amount of moisture and humidity in your bed.
If you have pets, keep them out of the bedroom, if possible, as dust mites love pet dander and your pet will carry the mites from room to room.
Throughout the House
Use a HEPA filter in your vacuum cleaner. These filters help keep dust mites and their waste from getting back into the air while vacuuming.
Replace carpeting with hardwood or tile flooring, if possible. Carpets are a breeding ground for dust mites as they trap dead skin and pet dander which is what the little pests love to feed on. If you do have carpet, vacuum at least two or three times a week. Here are nine things smart homeowners should do once a week.
Wash rugs regularly in hot water, if possible. Dry cleaning rugs will also kill dust mites. Learn how to clean area rugs yourself.
Try to keep the humidity level in your home less than 50 percent. You can do this using an air conditioner or a dehumidifier. These cleaning tips will reduce household allergens.