Dust mites are everywhere. They live in our carpets, bedding, curtains, mattress and pillows. They thrive in warm moist environments. For most of us they are harmless, but for some they can cause a significant problem.
Dust mite are not usually the main cause of eczema. It is difficult to weigh up if they are causing a significant enough problem to warrant the processes involved to remove them.
- Vacuum regularly. Whilst vacuuming will remover up to 70% of dust mites they will be back to their original numbers within a week
- Launder bedding regularly and use the hottest water your washing machine will allow
- Use plastic coverings on pillows and mattresses. This will remove the mites breeding ground. Ensure all coverings are securely fitted to eliminate any risk of suffocation
- Polished floor boards or tiles which can be washed regularly are preferable to carpets as carpets are a breeding ground
- Use mats that can be vacuumed regularly and taken outside and shaken
- Put fabric toys in the freezer each week
- Wash curtains and doona covers regularly
- Take doonas outside to be shaken out weekly
- Use washable quilts in preference to woolen blankets. They can be washed more regularly in hotter water
- Miticides, chemicals to kill the mites can be used effectively however use sparingly as they can be harmful to eyes and skin