We all know that dust is everywhere. It seems no matter how often we clean, we still notice dust or find a missed spot. Not to mention how much some of us sneeze while dusting and vacuuming.
Dust collects dirt, pollen, lint, hair, mold spores, flakes of paint, carpet fibers and sometimes dead insect pieces. Although dust is not a cute thing to find laying around the house, the bigger concern is dust mites. Dust mites are an eight-legged, small bug that survive on dead skin flakes. There can be hundreds or thousands of them within one gram of dust. It is their waste that causes people with dust mite allergies to sneeze and have a runny nose.
The most common places you can find dust when cleaning is:
- Underneath carpeting and rugs
- Upholstered furniture stuffing
- Pleated curtain tops
- Between appliances
- Under furniture including beds, couches, refrigerator, chair, etc.
- Molding corners-near the corners of counters, bathtubs and shower, etc.
- Between pleats in lampshades
- Inside pillows and mattresses
There are a few ways to help prevent your allergy symptoms while cleaning.
- When dusting and vacuuming, wear a mask. This will prevent dust particles from entering your mouth and nasal passage.
- Open the windows a little to help air out the confined spaces.
- Make sure to have a HEPA vacuum so dust does not move around the house
- Be sure to use the attachments to remove dust from corners and cracks.
- Vacuum throw rugs, couch cushions and pillows
- Move appliances and furniture to get all dust and dirt
- Polish or dust furniture before vacuuming. Some of the dust will land on carpet and floors.
- Wash all towels, blankets, sheets, pillowcases and throw rugs on hot water
- Use HEPA air cleaners in bedroom and living/family room
Unfortunately, dust mites will not just disappear. Frequently cleaning your house will help minimize them. Keep the humidity in your home below 40%, as dust mites like the wet environments. If you feel you need to be allergy tested, schedule an appointment with an allergist. You do not have to suffer from allergy symptoms!