Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Controlling the Mite Population

If you have dust mite allergies or asthma, you may be able to improve your life with a bit of extra work. These tips can help cut down on the number of dust mite colonies that live with you:

• Control dust. Vacuum often, dust flat surfaces, switch from carpet to hardwood floors, and remove knickknacks that collect dust. None of these steps will kill dust mites, but you can keep their numbers down by reducing their food supply.

• Control humidity. Dust mites thrive in moist environments. Sadly, no matter how dry your house is, your breathing and perspiration provides more than enough dampness to keep them happy in your bedding.

• Use cold and heat. If you can wash your bedding at scaldingly high temperatures— at least 130 degrees Farenheit—you can kill the mites that are there (although this obviously has no effect on the many more mites in your mattress). If you have a plushy object you can’t launder, like a child’s stuffed toy, a day in the freezer will also kill the mites, although it may leave lint on your frozen peas.

• Use allergenic covers. Many companies sell zippered covers for mattresses and pillows that can reduce the number of dust mites that get into your bedding and the amount of allergenic excrement that comes floating out once they’re in it. Of course, some mattress covers are about as comfortable as sleeping on a vinyl tablecloth. And frequent laundering may stretch the microscopic pores of the cover so that they’re big enough to let everything through anyway. If you decide to try this approach, it’s worth doing some research before you buy.

• When travelling, don’t think about it. Sure, there are probably plenty of dust mites in hotels, bed-and-breakfasts, and so on, but you’ll be home soon enough. If you really must feed your paranoia, obsess about something more serious, like bed bugs (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bedbug for travel tips that can help you spot these very unwelcome bedmates).

Source of Information : Oreilly - Your Body Missing Manual

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