Dust mites are tiny animals you cannot see. Every home has dust mites. They feed on skin flakes and are found in mattresses, pillows, carpets, upholstered furniture, bedcovers, clothes, stuffed toys, and fabric or other fabric-covered items. Dust mites are mostly harmless, but the body parts and feces of dust mites can trigger asthma in sensitive individuals.
Actions you can take to lessen the triggers for allergic individuals:
- Wash bedding (such as sheets, bedcovers, and blankets) once a week in hot water.
- Choose washable stuffed toys for your children and wash them often in hot water, and dry thoroughly. Keep stuffed toys off beds.
- Cover mattresses and pillows in dust-proof (allergen-impermeable) zippered covers.
- Maintain low indoor humidity ideally between 30-50% relative humidity. Humidity levels can be measured by hygrometers which are available at local hardware
- Remove dust often with a damp cloth. Vacuum carpet, fabric window coverings, and fabric-covered furniture to reduce dust build-up. Allergic people should leave the area being vacuumed.
- Using central vacuums or vacuums with high efficiency filters may be helpful.
Bob Beisbier, owner of BK Home Inspections, is a Certified Master Home Inspector who has been providing professional and thorough home inspections in southeast Wisconsin for over 12 years. Bob is Infrared certified, DILHR Certified, and provides Home Energy Tune-ups, Environmental Data Reports, Pre-sale Home Inspections and Pre-offer Home Inspections.