Plants and Animals

Never Hoovered your Mattress? You’re Probably Sleeping on Thousands of Dust Mites

Never Hoovered your Mattress? You’re Probably Sleeping on Thousands of Dust Mites

Lying in bed in a state of darkness and silence may make you feel like you are alone, but if you haven’t wrapped your mattress in the last two years; it’s far from your reality. There is no secret that the tiny critics live among us, the arachnophobes are probably too aware of it, but did you know that some arachnids are too partial to go to bed? (Some even like hanging in your hole …) Dust mites are microscopic arthropods and although there are several species, the two most common in the United States are Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus and Dermatophagoides farinae. Being so small, no species will likely affect the aesthetics of your bedroom, but they can have a big impact on your life.

Dust mites are the most common asthma and allergy trigger found indoors, usually causing rashes, sneezing and frequent drips. Symptoms can range from mild to extreme and greatly increase the chances of an asthma attack. 

You’ll probably see traces of dust bugs all over your home, but your bed sheets and mattresses will be a big hit for these little boys because they’re feeding your discarded skin cells. You may not realize it, but you spread about 1.5 grams of dead skin cells every day.

When we are in bed, our skin communicates a lot more than it does when we sit in a chair, and these touchy-feely spots in our home are basically human skin cell buffets for dust mites you can eat. Dust pits will hang out in places where we shower it with dermal flakes, so you can grab everything from bedding to stuffed animals as free real estate for these hungry tiny particles. “Millions of dust particles can live on your bedding, mattress, upholstery, carpet or curtain. They feed on dead human skin cells found in the dust, “said the American Lung Association (ALA).

“Dust is not a parasite; they do not bite our bodies, do not give wings or tear. Harmful allergens they create come in pieces in their rectum and body. Dust mites are almost everywhere; About four out of five homes in the United States have detectable levels of dust allergens in at least one bed.”