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HEALTH CONCERN? BioHealth Health Concerns

How to Control Your Exposure to Dust Mites and Molds

Contributing Author: Grisanti, Ronald D.C.

Dr. GrisantiRonald Grisanti, DC, DABCO, MS, is a board-certified chiropractic orthopedist with a master's degree in nutritional science. He and his partner, Dr. Dicken Weatherby presently teach an innovative seven month online Functional Medicine program. The program is co-sponsored by Southern California University of Health Sciences (formerly LACC) and has been approved for up to 21 CEU hours for most states 

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Control of your home environment can help reduce many of the symptoms of allergies.

Five major groups of substances in the environment trigger most of the common allergy symptoms. These are:

·  Molds (mildew, etc.)

·  House-dust mites

·  Animal dander

·  Pollens (grasses, weeds, trees)

·  Cigarette smoke, perfumes, and other chemicals

Below are methods of decreasing your exposure to dust mites and mold.

Your Bed:

  • Use a plastic type enclosed dust mite casing on the mattress, box springs, and pillows (now available at most large linen stores)
  • Use only washable non-wool blankets. Do not use down comforters
  • Use a spring or foam mattress (a waterbed or air mattress are excellent)
  • Wash sheets with very hot water and dry on hot cycle to destroy mites
  • Use hypoallergenic synthetic pillows instead of feather pillows if you are not using the dust mite plastic encasements. If you encase the pillow, the type of filling does not matter.

Tile, wood, linoleum or terrazzo floors are much better than carpet.

Carpets are the second main dust collector besides the bed.

Your Bedroom

If you can only change one room, it should be the bedroom - remember, you spend one-third of your life sleeping.

The bedroom should be the "oasis in the desert" and kept as allergy free as possible.

Upholstered furniture should be avoided in the bedroom.

Book shelves and other dust catchers should not be in the bedroom.

Additional Recommendations

Fans are NOT good because they keep the dust circulating.

Air conditioner filters should be changed frequently, special filters may be recommended.

When dusting, use a damp cloth. Rooms should be dusted frequently. If doing the dusting, the patient should wear a mask. No smoking in the house.

Window coverings: window shades are best, washable curtains are good, vertical blinds are okay, mini-blinds get too dusty, and drapery is poor.

Stuffed animals should be of the washable type, otherwise keep them out of the bedroom.

Try to prevent mildew and mold growth by keeping rooms dry, especially the bathroom and kitchen. Mold tends to collect in shower stalls and in the garbage bin.

The clothes dryer should be vented outside.

Exterior plants, trees, shrubs, etc. should be kept away from exterior house walls.