Dust mites are a form of microscopic spiders that find comfort in bedding, mattresses, curtains, carpets, and upholstered furniture.
They usually try to live in warmer climates and survive off feed on skin flakes from humans and animals.
However, due to certain allergies, removing dust mites is crucial towards leading a healthy lifestyle. To help get rid of dust mites in your home, here are our top ten tips without using harmful chemicals that can damage the environment.
1. Vacuum Smarter
Although vacuuming is one of the most effective ways to get rid of dust mites, it can also be one of the least effective as well.
It mainly depends on the type of vacuum cleaner you own, since cheaper ones may not be as strong to suck deep into fabric and get rid of dust mites entirely.
Here are a few tips and tricks to vacuum more effectively, without leaving one dust mite behind.
- Wear a mask while vacuuming or ask someone without dust mite allergies to help you vacuum
- Pick a vacuum with HEPA filters to prevent dust from escaping the vacuum cleaner
- Vacuum twice a week for more effective results
- Vacuum all rugs, upholstery, and furniture that you own
2. Keep Temperature and Humidity Low
Since dust mites thrive in high humidity and hotter temperatures, make your home uninhabitable for them. Once you notice an infestation, keep your indoor temperatures lower and keep humidity under control.
You can even try switching on a humidifier if you notice your home is too humid and may be contributing to the population of dust mites in your home.
The American Lung Association also recommends opening your windows in your home for at least one hour a day to prevent humidity buildup. It’s wise to keep windows open around noon to 3 pm since that’s when hottest temperatures tend to peak.
3. Wait on Making Your Bed Every Morning
Dust mites love moisture. When you keep your sheets sprawled apart every morning, moisture on your sheets can dry faster and reduce the number of dust mites in that area.
4. Wash Your Bed Sheets Regularly
When you don’t wash your sheets, they tend to become damp places which are perfect for dust mites to call home. Plus, your dead skin flakes tend to pile up when you’re not properly cleaning your bed sheets, which can get pretty gross.
When you put your sheets through the wash, you can kill any dust mites and clean off any excess dry skin flakes. Not to mention, it also helps remove fecal matter from dust mites on your bed and prevents any future allergies.
It’s best to do this on a weekly basis for best results.
5. Purchase Specialized Bed Sheets
Believe it or not, the average bed contains roughly between 100,000 and 10 million dust mites which can leave behind millions of droppings.
Although you can regularly clean your bed, it’s not a bad idea to invest in allergen-proof fabric covers and sheets to help protect yourself, and your bed, from these mites.
In fact, recent studies have shown that covering beds with special mite-proof sheets greatly reduced asthma attacks overnight.
6. Remove Soft Furniture and Curtains
Dust mites love soft furnishings, cushions, and curtains because the fabric can trap a lot of dust and moisture, which the mites love to eat.
There are a few ways you can reduce the number of dust mites living in your soft furniture and decor.
- Ditch your curtains and install blinds
- Trade in your fabric couches and cushions for artificial leather ones
- If you don’t want to get rid of your furniture, use a steam cleaner to clean them frequently
7. Reduce The Number of Plants in Your Home
Houseplants are a great addition for each season in your home, but they contribute a lot to the number of dust mites in your environment.
However, if you cannot bear a home without plants, either opt in for fake ones or remember to wipe down your plant’s leaves on a daily basis.
You can also work on reducing the number of dust mites by purchasing air-purifying plants such as Areca Palm, Bamboo Palm, Gerbera Daisies, Dracaena, and Peace Lilies, just to name a few. They can even help you sleep better at night as well!
8. Try Some Essential Oils
You can create your own mite spray, free from any chemicals by using essential oils. Tea tree oil is quite effective at reducing the number of dust mites thanks to its antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties.
This oil will also remove any other virus, fungi, or bacteria that may cause allergies. Eucalyptus oil is yet another great option with the proven capability to get rid of dust mites.
Simply mix two cups of distilled water with two teaspoons of your essential oil of choice and put it into a spray bottle. You can use this mixture when wet dusting or you can use it to spray fabrics to kill any mites.
9. Use Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth, or DE, is a powder that has a number of fantastic uses. It is often used in cooking and making health and beauty products. DE is made of the fossilized remains of diatoms, which are minuscule aquatic creatures.
The skeletons or these organisms are cylindrical and have very sharp edges. They do not affect humans in any way, but for small insects and parasites, it can be deadly. This includes dust mites, fleas, and bed bugs.
In order to use the DE correctly, sprinkle a little on any carpets, rugs, bedding, mattresses, and pet bedding. Let it settle for a few hours or overnight before your vacuum it up.
You can repeat this process as many times as necessary. When purchasing DE, make sure you get the food-grade type. This is safe to be used around animals and children and is safe to have in the home.
10. Take Extra Care If You Have Pets
Any pets that have fur or feathers significantly increase the amount on dander in the house, thus increasing the number of mites, too. If you have pets, there are still a few things you ca do to limit the number of dust mites in your home.
- Do your grooming outside
- Wash your pet’s bedding often
- Cover your pet’s bed with an allergen-proof fabric cover
- Prevent your pets from jumping on your bed and couch
Keep in mind, your pet may also be allergic to dust mites, too. It is estimated that anywhere from 30 to 80 percent of cats and dogs are allergic to dust mites. Look for signs like itching and ear infections.
Get Rid Of Dust Mites For Good
Dust mites are a pain in the neck to get rid of, but there are plenty of different ways to help get rid of them either temporarily or permanently.
Now, you don’t have to complete every action in our guide, but even doing one of them can greatly reduce the number of dust mites in your home.