Dust mite allergies: exploring causes and treatment solutions

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Dust mite allergy is pretty common in the US, and more than 20 million Americans are allergic to dust mites. Although very common, dust mite allergies can be very irritating. 

While allergies can’t be cured, managing them can help you effectively control them. Book your appointment at a nearby asthma & allergic disease clinic to understand which treatment will suit you the best.

Understanding the symptoms of dust mite allergy 

Dust mites prefer to live in the dust of human skin flakes, which also serve as their food source. The most common type of dust mite is Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus, which is responsible for respiratory allergies like eczema in humans. 

Some other prominent symptoms of dust mite allergies are as follows:

  • Runny nose
  • Breathlessness
  • Coughing
  • Congestion in the chest
  • Wheezing
  • Itching in nose
  • Watery and itchy eyes
  • Skin itch
  • Rashes on skin

Usual dust mites hiding spots in your house

The dust mites are wingless and less than half mm in length. They can live up to two months and prefer to hide in warm, humid, and dark spots like-

  • Bed linen and mattresses
  • Furniture upholstery
  • Long fibred carpets 
  • Soft toys

Diagnosis for dust mite allergy and treatment 

Your doctor may prescribe allergy testing, like evidence-based allergy tests, to determine if the dust mites are responsible for your dermatological or respiratory symptoms. Once the diagnosis is complete, the doctor might prescribe over-the-counter medications to help the allergy symptoms:

  • Antihistamine pills, liquids, or nasal sprays to relieve sneezing and itching in your eyes and nose, along with runny and stuffy nose.
  • Nasal corticosteroids or nasal sprays to block allergic reactions caused mainly by allergic rhinitis.
  • Leukotriene receptor antagonists are used to block chemical messengers that trigger allergic reactions.
  • Cromolyn sodium nasal spray to block histamines and leukotrienes from causing allergic reactions.
  • Decongestant pills, liquids, sprays, or drops shrink the nasal passage lining to provide relief from stuffiness.

Remedies to reduce dust mites in your house

The best way to keep your dust allergies at bay is to reduce the dust mite population by employing measures like:

  • Use dust mite-resistant pillows, mattresses, and quilt covers.
  • Wash pillow covers and sheets at least once a week in hot water.
  • Dry clean or tumble dry the household items.
  • Wash blankets at once every two months.
  • Instead of feather pillows, use synthetic pillows to facilitate frequent washing.
  • Avoid woolen or sheepskin products.
  • Maintain cleanliness in the house.
  • Wash mats and rugs regularly.
  • Vacuum clean your house at least once a week.