Dust mites and their droppings are often associated with allergies, asthma and eczema in humans.
The pest may even be responsible for asthma attacks in children. Some may even experience allergy symptoms year round if dust mites are present.
A dust mite is a tiny arachnid spider with eight hairy legs that is invisible to the human eye. They have a round body that is clear or creamy white with hairs.
A female mite deposits anywhere from 40 to 80 cream-colored eggs. The eggs hatch and the young develop into six stages until they become an adult. The entire developmental process takes about one month to complete.
Dust mites thrive in bedrooms where conditions are ideal. These pests feed on dead skin cells that are found in house dust. They also survive by feeding on water vapor from human breaths and perspiration.
Eliminating dust mites entirely isn't possible. Instead, focus on reducing exposure to the allergies mites cause and make your home an environment that the pests cannot easily thrive in.
When selecting furniture for your home, select pieces that accumulate dust.
Cover bedroom mattresses with plastic and avoid buying feather pillows and comforters that dust mites are attracted to. If plastic isn't an option, vacuum mattresses once a week to reduce dust and mites.
Wash bedding in hot water every few weeks and pillows and mattress toppers once a month.
Replace curtains and drapes on windows that attract dish mites with plastic shades.
Minimize or eliminate fabric wall decor like tapestries, which can accumulate dust and mites. Also, if your walls are carpeted, consider replacing it.
Carpted floors are another common resource for dust mites and should be replaced with tile or other flooring that doesn't attract dust.