The Hammond Knoll Blog

BEWARE What's living in your mattresses, furniture, rugs, carpets and other fabric could be making you SICK!

Posted by Hammond Knoll on Jan 22, 2018 8:21:11 AM

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These darling little critters are dust mites

The bad news:

Dust mites are the most common cause of allergy from household dust. Dust mites live and multiply easily in warm, humid places. They prefer temperatures at or above 70 degrees Fahrenheit with humidity of 75 to 80 percent. They die when the humidity falls below 50 percent. 

Dust mites leave waste and body parts behind and are most often found in pillows, mattresses, carpeting, area rugs and upholstered furniture. They float into the air when anyone vacuums, walks on a carpet or disturbs bedding then they settle once the disturbance is over.

Both the body parts and the waste of dust mites are allergens causing minor or even major allergic reactions in many people. 


The good news:

Having dust mites doesn’t mean your house isn’t clean. In most areas of the world, these creatures live in every home, no matter how clean, but, you can reduce their effects. There are many changes you can make to your home to reduce the numbers of these unwanted “guests.”

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Steam clean carpet and upholstery. The most effective cleaning method to remove dust mites and waste is with a professional cleaning company using a thermal extraction or also known as steam carpet cleaning method.  The heat from the steam kills dust mites, and for an added repellent have a professional anti-allergen spray applied after cleaning.                                                                                                                                                                          

Area & Oriental rug cleaning. A thorough cleaning of an area rug then dried in a humidity controlled dry room is most effective at removing dust mites and their excrement, an added repellent can also be applied to area and oriental rugs.

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Cover mattresses and pillows in zippered or dust proof covers. These covers are made of a material with pores too small to let dust mites and their waste product through. They are also called allergen-impermeable. Plastic or vinyl covers are the least expensive, but some people find them uncomfortable. You can buy other fabric allergen-impermeable covers from many regular bedding stores.

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Have someone without a dust mite allergy clean your bedroom. If this is not possible, wear a filtering mask when dusting or vacuuming. Many drug stores carry these items. Dusting and vacuuming stir up dust. So try to do these chores when you can stay out of the bedroom for a while afterward.

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Wash your sheets and blankets weekly in hot water. You have to wash them in water that’s at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit or more to kill dust mites.


Special Hepa filter vacuum cleaners can help to keep mites and mite waste from getting back into the air. You can buy these filters from an allergy supply company or in some specialty vacuum stores if your vacuum cleaner doesn’t come with a HEPA filter.


Keep the humidity in your home less than 50 percent. Use a dehumidifier and/or air conditioner to do this.

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Use a Hepa filter with your central furnace and air conditioning unit. This can help trap dust mites from your entire home. Freestanding only filter air in a limited area. Avoid devices that treat air with heat, electrostatic ions or ozone.

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Cheers to a healthy home.

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