How To Get Dust Mites Out Of Pillows
Dust mites pose health issues for individuals with allergies or respiratory conditions. Along with the mattress and bedding, pillows are one of the usual sites where they accumulate. Since pillows are in close contact to the face every night while resting or sleeping, this is an issue for concern.
Dust Mites In A Nutshell?
Dust mites are microscopic bugs that thrive on household dust. They are generally present on various surfaces such as upholstered furniture, pillows, mattresses, and stuffed toys.
The mites feed on miniature human skin flakes that we shed daily. Once shed, these flakes accumulate in furniture, carpets, mattresses, bedding, pillows, and stuffed toys. These areas contain large populations of dust mites. Furthermore, having pets around such as cats and dogs release dander which also serve as food for the mites.
Their lifespan ranges from 2-4 months. The dust mites require water to survive which they absorb from their environment with the help of glands present at the base of their front legs.
In most climates, the dust mite population is likely to rise during summer where the humidity level is high and eventually peaks in fall. Upon the arrival of winter, the population drops due to the dry and cold weather.
A dust mite only grows to one-quarter to one-third of a millimeter which makes them invisible to the naked eye. When using a microscope, it is a white bug with 8 legs which is categorized as an arachnid along with spiders, chiggers, and ticks. They prefer environments with temperatures between 68-77 degrees F with a humidity level of 70-80%.
Getting Dust Mites Out Of Pillows
There are various ways to eliminate dust mites from pillows.
1. Clean Pillow Covers Regularly
Since pillows come in close contact to our face every time we sleep, it potentially increases the risk of allergies or asthma among highly sensitive individuals.
- Wash all bedding including the pillow covers in hot water once a week to eliminate any dust mites. The water should be at least 140 degrees Fahrenheit to get rid of the mites.
- Place the pillows in a dryer for 15 minutes. Make sure that the dryer reaches 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Put Pillow Covers In Air Dryers
An air dryer has both industrial and household applications. It is a device or equipment that removes water vapor from compressed air.
The main function of an air dryer is to eliminate moisture from the air using a refrigerant to cool it. As an outcome, the water vapor condenses, and the air is compressed. The dry compressed air can be utilized in compressed air equipment without resulting in any damage. It also reduces the amount of vapor in the compressed air.
An air dryer is mainly used in the industrial setting such as in hospitals, heavy industries, space science, and jewelry applications. As for the household application, some of the uses of air dryers include spin dryers, heat pump dryer, clothes dryer, and hair dryers. The air dryers in the household applications involve drying a substance or object.
3. Use Hypoallergenic Pillow Protectors
Most of us spend almost half of the day in bed at night. If dust mites are present in our pillows, we are inhaling their wastes. If highly sensitive or allergic to dust mites, it is recommended to use hypoallergenic pillow protectors as a shield against the mites.
These covers not only protect the pillows from dust mites, but also from other potential allergens that can trigger health issues such as mold, mildew, pollen and animal dander.
A hypoallergenic pillow protector is designed to enclose the pillow with a non-porous material that will not allow the entry of dust mites, usually a zipper. Make sure that it provides a tight fit, so you can still place a pillowcase over the cover.
Just make sure to wash both the hypoallergenic pillow cover and other pillowcases on a regular basis.
4. Use Anti Dust Mites Vacuum Cleaners
Another alternative is using ultraviolet (UV) light to eliminate dust mites. Aside from the dust mites and their eggs, UV light can also eliminate viruses, bacteria, germs, mold, and other microorganisms but its effectiveness is based on the strength of the light and amount of time the microorganism was exposed.
Anti Dust Mite Vacuum Cleaners are specially designed to get rid of dust mites on your bed, carpet, and sofa. It has a built-in UV light that eliminates mites in the vacuum cleaner effectively. The UV lights turn off automatically when lifting the vacuum cleaner to prevent direct eye exposure.
Furthermore, it includes a semi-transparent dust trap and a micro brush tip for thorough cleaning without causing any damage to fabrics. In addition, it has a HEPA filter for efficient filtration of dust and mites.
5. Maintain The Right Level Of Humidity
Humidity has a key role in the increase of dust mites. Remember that the mites cannot survive without moisture in the air. Having a hygrometer helps to keep track of the humidity level in your home.
If the humidity level is less than 55%, the mites could not survive. The use of air conditioning and heaters have an impact on the survival of the mites since they dry out the air. Nevertheless, if the humidity level is high, dust mites will thrive where they reproduce rapidly under the right conditions.
You can lower the level of moisture and allow the circulation of fresh air by opening windows. The warmth from the sunlight has a drying effect. If you cannot open the windows, air conditioning and heating can help. For those with central air and heating, use a good quality air filter.
6. Use a Dehumidifier
You can use a dehumidifier to ensure that the environment in the bedroom is unsuitable for dust mites. It prevents dust mites from growing rapidly in the pillows.
A dehumidifier works by removing moisture and eliminating the source of food that dust mites thrive on. The recommended level of humidity is between 40-60%. For those who have allergies, it is vital to maintaining the humidity level between 40-50%.
Ensure that all sources of moisture are dealt with such as leaks. Remember though that dehumidifiers are not a treatment for allergies to dust mites but reduce the humidity necessary for their survival and reproduction. The device is an essential component in controlling dust mites in the house.
Dust mites are known health triggers that have been a nuisance for many individuals all over the globe. With the help of some control and preventive measures such as regular cleaning of pillows, bedding, and mattresses, it can keep the respiratory reactions including asthma and allergic reactions to a minimum degree.
- Where Do Dust Mites Come From
- Are Dust Mites Visible To The Human Eye
- How To Know If You Have Dust Mites At Home
- How To Remove Dust Mites From Home Naturally
- What Are Dust Mites – Get To Know The Unseen Pests