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All about dust mites: who are they, habitat, how to get rid of them


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In old books, paper or dust mites are often found - tiny arachnids. These creatures prefer places with high humidity, they feed on mold. Despite the name, paper ticks live not only in books, but also in other wet and dusty places. These parasites can be eliminated using certain methods. First of all, you should control the humidity level in the room.

Dust mite: characteristics and habitat

Dust mites (“anthers” in common people, the scientific name is Dermatofogoides of the genus farine — hence the mite “Farina”) are parasites invisible to the human eye, resembling arachnid insects. The size of their body in length is only 0.1-0.5 mm. Therefore, pests can be detected and discerned only under a microscope.

Dust mites look pretty unpleasant. They have an undivided body and 4 pairs of limbs with suction cups. In this case, the parasites are covered with a water-repellent layer. Because of what, they easily pass through drops of water, and it is often possible to wash them off when cleaning only with a soap solution.

Dust mites are widely distributed around the world. At the same time, they have been “side by side” for more than one hundred and even one thousand years. The subject of scientific study of these parasites have long been. To date, more than 150 species of such pests are known.

Dust mites live relatively shortly. On average 65-80 days. Moreover, during this time, the female parasite is able to lay about three hundred eggs. This means that under favorable conditions their population grows exponentially. That is why they often breed unhindered at home, as it is usually warm (22-26 ° C) and humid. The best microenvironment for dust mites and not come up with.

True, even for the growth of the population, these parasites, like many other living creatures, need food. And again, in an apartment or house, there is plenty of it for them. Dust mites willingly eat dead particles of human skin, animal hair and natural pile.

If we talk about where dust mites most often start, then this:

  • a bed and bedding (there are especially many pests in mattresses, blankets, old rugs and pillows),
  • carpets made of natural materials,
  • soft toys (anthers also start very often in them),
  • floor carpets and walkways,
  • curtains and curtains,
  • paper magazines and books,
  • furniture upholstery,
  • old clothes
  • dust accumulations (behind cabinets, tables, in corners and other places where we don’t get when cleaning the room).

At the same time, dust mites inhabit colonies. And on average, up to 10 thousand individuals can fall on 1 g of household dust. Surprisingly, even in a one-room small apartment, the number of such parasites is higher than the number of all people living on planet Earth.

For reference! It is customary to divide dust mites into several groups. These are barn, predatory (those that eat barn) and random (introduced from the outside and do not breed indoors).

Why are dust mites dangerous and harmful?

Some people think that dust mites can bite. At the same time, injecting toxic substances into the bloodstream and infecting a person with dangerous diseases. Just say that this is not so. A dust mite bite is nothing more than a fiction. These parasites cannot cause mechanical damage to the skin. They do harm differently. Through the products of their life, which are powerful allergens. These include:

  • cuticle (discarded after molting),
  • secrets and enzymes
  • feces.

So such waste products of dust mites (easily rising into the air and forming accumulations with dust) pose a threat to the human body. Largely because of its ability to cause contact, food and respiratory allergies, as well as provoke the appearance of:

  1. rhinitis and runny nose,
  2. dermatitis
  3. conjunctivitis,
  4. bronchial asthma,
  5. acariasis
  6. cough
  7. sneezing
  8. respiratory allergosis,
  9. Quincke's edema and many others. other

In conditions of a large number of dust mites, it is especially difficult for elderly people and children. Allergy suffers quite a lot. Moreover, if there are a lot of dust mites, then an allergic reaction may appear in those who have never complained about the hypersensitivity of the immune system.

For reference! These tiny pet parasites are not harmful in small quantities! So, the concentration of dust mites up to 100 pieces per gram of dust is absolutely safe. If they are five times more, then a person may have asthma attacks. When the number of "reptiles" reaches 1000-2000 per gram of dust, they easily provoke allergies and a runny nose, which then turns into a chronic one.

How to understand that there are a lot of dust mites?

It is reassuring that it is not difficult to detect the presence of unwanted guests in large numbers in a house or apartment. It is enough to pay attention to your condition and well-being of those who live with you.

What manifest reactions and symptoms should alert? There are quite a lot of them:

  • sinus congestion,
  • copious and frequent discharge from the nose,
  • regular sneezing
  • itching in the nose and palate,
  • severe lacrimation, irritation of the mucous membranes,
  • dry cough, wheezing in the throat,
  • night awakenings due to difficulty breathing,
  • irritation of the skin (redness, itching, peeling, burning, various rashes, the appearance of a rash, eczema, urticaria, etc.).

A possible cause of all these ailments is an allergy to house dust mites. It is best to consult a doctor as soon as possible. He will prescribe the right treatment for you and prescribe the necessary medications and drugs that will help get rid of tick-borne allergies and eliminate its symptoms. Of course, it will be useful to start an active fight against these parasites.

For reference! In most asthmatics, the disease is caused by the activity of dust mites and their excrement.

How to get rid of dust mites?

You should immediately warn you - it is impossible to completely remove and remove parasites from the premises. You can only reduce the number, which will make their stay completely harmless to humans.

At the same time, the most effective method of destroying dust mites is to create conditions in which parasites will be as uncomfortable as possible. Therefore, if you want to get rid of dust mites, then start by thoroughly cleaning all the rooms in the house or apartment, without exception. These pests do not tolerate purity and cannot normally exist and reproduce without an abundance of dust.

But if there are a lot of “anthers”, then you should not be limited to one cleaning. There are a number of other effective methods to reduce the parasite population:

  1. Ventilate. And not only the premises, but also toys, carpets, rugs, bedding, etc. An excellent option is to freeze an apartment or house if it is winter outside. The fact is that a dust mite dies at low (or high) temperatures and humidity less than 50%. Therefore, it is recommended to open windows for one hour every day. As for the conditions under which dust mites do not feel very well, it is a temperature between 18º C and 22º C (or lower), as well as a humidity of 40%.
  2. Take out mattresses, blankets, carpets, soft toys, etc.. On the street they need to be well knocked out and left in the sun. Ultraviolet is harmful for adult dust mites and their eggs.
  3. Minimize dust in the room. For example, remove excess textile, replace blackout curtains with aluminum or plastic blinds. You can also reduce the number of decorative pillows on sofas and beds. Hide dust collecting items. This may be unnecessary decorations, picture frames, stacks of books, newspapers, paper, etc.
  4. Use a good (preferably washing) vacuum cleaner. That is, not with some old dust collector, but with a modern model equipped with a special filter that will prevent mites from spraying during the cleaning process. Vacuum and mop the floor every day.
  5. Replace bedding and clean carpets. For example, there is a special linen for allergy sufferers made of such fabrics that a dust mite cannot live in. Worth to get it. At a minimum, you can switch to synthetic bedspreads, mattress covers and blankets, as well as abandon down pillows. It is also recommended to remove all natural carpets and bedspreads, as millions of dust mites can live in them.
  6. Throw away old unnecessary things and other rubbish.Especially worn pillows, blankets and clothes that are several decades old. This will remove more than one thousand dust mites from the premises.
  7. Thoroughly clean the upholstery of upholstered furniture. Or completely replace it with leatherette or leather, completely removing all fleecy tissue.
  8. Wash all bedding in the automatic machine at temperatures above 60–70 degrees, and then iron it thoroughly with a hot iron.If you have a lot of soft toys at home, then they should be subjected to these procedures.

For reference! In order to prevent and control dust mites, remove dust not only from visible surfaces, but also in hard-to-reach places. Use a soapy or saline solution of water (5 tbsp.spoons per 10-12 l).

Folk and chemical means of combating dust mites

If you think that the above methods are not enough to get rid of parasites, then you can use other methods. So, some people use folk remedies against dust mites.

The most common option is eucalyptus oil. It is believed that it is very effective and at the same time fatal to parasites. They process absolutely any surface: fabrics, bedding, carpets, etc. Another simple and cheap way to deal with a pest is to treat the surfaces of the room with a saline solution, which can be prepared in just a couple of seconds. It is enough to dissolve about 250 grams of table salt in a liter of water.

Special sprays, shampoos, foams, concentrates and solutions from dust mites are quite popular today. Among the most common:

At the same time, most drugs for dust mites are based on substances that do not kill parasites, but only help break down the protein structures of allergens. What does it give? Everything is simple. As a result, the human immune system no longer perceives them as foreign objects, which means that an allergic reaction does not develop.


Dust mites are invisible and unpleasant "neighbors". They harm our health, easily become the cause of allergies and other painful conditions. Moreover, these parasites cannot be completely eliminated. All that a person can do is minimize their number in the house and apartment, eliminating as much as possible the negative impact of pests on their well-being. As for effective means of combating dust mites, there are a lot of them. But to be honest, the main weapon of a person against such pests is cleanliness.

What is a dust mite?

So what is a dust mite? Firstly, it is a microscopic insect ranging in size from 0.5 to 0.1 mm, living up to 80 days and leaving offspring in the form of a laying of eggs of 60 pieces. The number of their species exceeds 150, which are combined into the genera Dermatophagoides and Euroglyphus of the family Pyroglyphidae, which is why they are also called pyroglyphid and dermatophagoid ticks, and are classified as Arachnida - arachnids.

House dust mites can be divided into three groups: the first is pyroglyphid mites directly, as well as some types of barn mites, the second group are predator mites that eat the first group, and the third group are random mites that were introduced from outside but did not form populations in apartment and do not breed in it.

A dust mite is a synatropic organism, that is, living with a person who loves heat (22–260 ° C) and humidity above 55%, the presence of a nutrient base in the form of dead human skin cells (and a person loses up to one and a half grams of dead leather flakes daily) and woolen pile of plaids, blankets, carpets, furniture upholstery. Dust accumulation places are especially comfortable for a dust mite: skirting boards, bookshelves, carpets, slippers, etc.

Dust mites live in “colonies” of 10 to 10,000 insects per 1 gram of dust, while the standard concentration of mites is 100 mites per 1 gram, and their population can change during the year - usually the peak of their number in the apartment is from August to October . Up to 100 ticks per gram of dust - a concentration safe for humans, 500 insects per gram - can trigger an asthmatic attack, and from 1000 to 2000 - cause allergies and chronic runny nose in people genetically predisposed to this.

Why are dust mites dangerous?

Actually, not ticks themselves, not dust, and not even products of their vital activity, but substances contained in their excrement are dangerous to humans. These substances contain the digestive enzymes Der p1 and Der f1, with which mites break down particles of the human epidermis. These proteins are strong allergens. Although of course the chitinous membrane of dead insects also irritates the mucous membrane of the respiratory tract.

In medicine, there are three main types of allergies: respiratory, contact and food. House dust mites and barn mites can cause varieties of all types of allergies, among them:

  • allergic rhinitis
  • bronchial asthma,
  • respiratory allergoses - with periodic inhalation of ticks and their excrement,
  • atopic dermatitis,
  • conjunctivitis,
  • rhinoconjunctivitis,
  • Quincke's edema,
  • acarodermatitis - with bites of dust mites,
  • deep acariases - when ticks enter the gastrointestinal tract.

All this is combined with the concept of tick-borne allergy, or sensitivity to tick-borne allergens. Obviously, an allergy to a dust mite is not only an unpleasant, but also a dangerous disease. Therefore, it is so important that you regularly clean the apartment before drinking antihistamines.

How to get rid of dust mites

There are a number of general rules that must be observed before going to the allergist. All of them are aimed at thorough cleaning of rooms and depriving dust mites of the possibility of a comfortable stay in them. So your actions:

  • Reduce the number of upholstered furniture with woven upholstery, replacing it with upholstered furniture with leather upholstery or its substitute.
  • Ruthlessly get rid of all woolen carpets, as well as carpets and rugs with high and / or natural pile.
  • Get rid of soft toys.
  • Replace down and feather bedding (pillows and blankets) with synthetic ones.
  • Hot-wash all bedding and then dry thoroughly in the air (balcony, loggia or kitchen with an open window).
  • Wet the floor and baseboards with a saline solution, which is prepared at the rate of 5-10 tablespoons per bucket of water.
  • Wipe all the books on the shelves with a damp cloth and pour boiling water over all the dishes in the sideboard.
  • Remove all hard-to-reach areas with a vacuum cleaner with an aquafilter and a separator with a HEPA filter.
  • Maintain a dry microclimate in the apartment with air humidity below 40% for a month, for this you can use air dryers.
  • Use air conditioners and air purifiers capable of trapping particles less than 30 microns.

However, it is not always necessary to make sacrifices in order to get rid of allergens in the form of getting rid of half of the furniture, curtains and carpets, it is not always necessary to buy a lot of expensive and ranking equipment. It is enough just to purchase a powerful multifunctional cleaning system that can cope with the cleaning of surfaces and air by almost 100%.

A reliable tool against dust mites

Modern vacuum cleaners have long ceased to be just helpers for dry cleaning. Some particularly advanced models can replace almost all home appliances. An example is the Rainbow E2 vacuum cleaner from Rexair, inc. (USA).

In fact, a vacuum cleaner is a whole system that fights not only for cleaning surfaces from dust, but also for destroying dust mites and their waste products, as well as for the maximum possible air cleaning.

  • Rainbow is the only vacuum cleaner in the world that has been patented as an air purifier - for this it has an appropriate operating mode,
  • Rainbow E2 is equipped with a powerful separator aquafilter and the highest class HEPA filter, which makes it possible to get 99.997% purified air at the outlet,
  • Rainbow E2 provides a system for vacuum processing and storage of pillows, clothes and soft toys,
  • The vacuum cleaner allows chemical cleaning of surfaces, as well as cleaning with solutions that kill dust mites.
  • Rainbow’s standalone air purification and humidification system is especially suitable for people with asthma and allergies.
  • Additional nozzles and brushes Rainbow E2 (for crevices, for furniture, a brush with long bristles, etc.) raise the quality of cleaning to a new height.

So, the cleaning system and the air cleaning system are now connected in one device - Rainbow E2 from Rexair, inc. The owners of such a vacuum cleaner can be sure not only of the cleanliness of the premises, but also of the extraordinary freshness of the air.

Features of the life of parasites.

The main feature of these arthropods is their size - they do not exceed 0.4 mm. Absolutely invisible to the naked eye, they live quietly everywhere. In total there are about 150 species, you can meet a tick in any corner of the planet.

Small arachnids feed on dead skin cells, which is why they are most found in sleeping places of people. It is warm, comfortable, food is always at hand. But this does not mean that they are not in the rest of the dust.

Each gram of dusty mass has at least 100 pieces. Also, the home of their colony can be bookshelves, upholstered furniture, rugs, carpets, down products and other secluded places in the apartment.

Humidity should be approximately 75%, temperature - not lower than 20-25 ° C, such ideal conditions for arthropods, can allow you to live about two and a half months and breed 60 eggs.

In house dust, you can find several types of dust mites:

  • Which appeared in the apartment quite by accident, and they will not be able to continue breeding here,
  • Barn mites,
  • Tick ​​predators, they usually hunt and eat barn.

The effect of ticks on humans.

These little arachnids do not bite or drink blood like encephalitis ticks, but they are still very dangerous. Their excrement contains an allergen, which can lead to the most sad consequences.

They include a pair of proteins that break down human skin cells. That is why itching appears, even if you have never had an allergic reaction. Due to its very small size, fecal balls fly everywhere with any air fluctuation.

Thus, they settle on the skin and fly into the respiratory tract. For the safe proximity of humans with these parasites, one gram of dust should contain about 100 individuals. If there are more than 500, then there may be a risk of various reactions.

There are neglected cases, that is, in the presence of favorable conditions, about 10 thousand ticks of house dust were found in one gram of dust. This should not be allowed. From this it is clear that the biggest danger caused by the vital activity of parasites is allergy.

Let us consider in more detail what the prolonged exposure of small pests to the human body can lead to.

Danger of developing diseases.

Under favorable conditions, our ubiquitous microscopic neighbors can spawn so much that it will not be possible to live next to them. Many people may get irritated by the excrement of parasites.

And the reaction to this can be any:

  1. The occurrence of allergic rhinitis,
  2. Conjunctivitis,
  3. Dermatitis
  4. Respiratory allergosis,
  5. Bronchial asthma,
  6. Quincke's edema.

It can be seen that, despite the microscopic nature, parasites are dangerous. If you have all the signs of irritation, but you can’t find a reason, try taking tests for intolerance to the body on a dust mite.

When confirming the diagnosis, you need to immediately begin to think about freeing the apartment from at least most of the pests, because they cannot be completely removed.

Recently, an increase in the number of parasites has been recorded, this is evidenced by the following facts:

  1. 5% of children in Russia have a disease such as bronchial asthma.
  2. In 6% of people, this disease is fatal.
  3. Every tenth person has allergic irritation.
  4. Half of all cases are household allergies.
  5. The number of allergy sufferers is increasing by 40 million every year.

If the number of ticks is higher than normal, it negatively affects people's lives, even without an allergic reaction. The head can often hurt, there will be discomfort in the mucosa, the person will quickly tire, be depressed, and skin diseases will appear.

If these signs are characteristic when staying in a certain part of the apartment, we can say that there the number of pests is exceeded.

Do not leave it all unattended, otherwise chronic asthma may appear. It arises due to the fact that the person did not begin to be treated or remembered about it too late. You also need to remember that it is necessary to be treated for the disease itself and remove its cause, and not stop the temporary symptoms.

If you begin to suspect an allergy in yourself or in a child, but do not know for sure, then observe your feelings. When you wake up in the morning, is your nose obstructed, is breathing difficult, and when you rise and in the afternoon, everything is in order, and nothing bothers. So, most likely, you have a reaction to house dust mites, since they are most on a human bed.

We get rid of dust mites.

It is sad, but people will not be able to completely remove household dust mites from their lives. Especially now, when city apartments are equipped with a variety of different furniture, household appliances, where there is a suitable humidity and comfortable temperature. All these items are dust collectors, and where there is dust, there is a tick.

Due to the large amount of furniture and electronics, many secluded places are formed in the rooms, to which neither a vacuum cleaner nor a damp cloth can get. It is there that microscopic pests sit and wait in the wings.

But still you should not give up and become covered with dirt. By performing several actions, you can get rid of a certain number of arachnids, which will give you the opportunity to sleep peacefully and love to be in the home.

Stage 1: Throw trash away.

To begin with, we will convince ourselves of the need to throw away all old furniture, carpets, curtains. Although they came from a grandmother or other relatives, these things are considered their duty to collect all the dirt in the room.

If you take this step, you can remove a decent amount of parasites from the room. Of course, you can give it to dry cleaning or wash it yourself, but old items are very difficult to get rid of even a small number of pests.

Most of your arachnids will remain in your favorite grandmother's things, and in a short time they will increase their numbers. If you wish not to risk your health and your loved ones it is better to endure all this.

Some do not know how much to use this or that upholstered furniture or bedding.

For example, the pillow needs to be changed every 2-3 years, and if it is feather and more often, the mattress can serve you faithfully for about 8-10 years, the blanket needs to be changed after 5 years.

And during all this time you need to monitor their cleanliness and periodically clean.

Stage 2: Clear-out.

The second step is one of the most important - general cleaning. It must be done very carefully, paying attention to all nooks, small objects of the interior, fabric objects. Only it needs to be started immediately after you have thrown out all the dust collectors so that the arachnids do not have time to find a new home.

Do not forget that the general cleaning includes global washing. It is necessary to wash all clothes, bedding, rugs with hot water. For items that need delicate washing, for example, children's favorite soft toys, you can use dry cleaning services. You can also send those things there for cleaning which you do not have time or desire.

But remember, just do not remove ticks with warm, clean water. To destroy a larger number of them, you need to use special drugs that are aimed at baiting arachnids.

For example, for cleaning carpets, you can buy products with such basic active substance as trichloromethaphos-3. Usually these are emulsions that just need to be mixed with water in a specific dosage. Put the liquid on the carpet and wait for it to dry, no need to rinse.

We fight dust with a vacuum cleaner.

In the presence of a constant allergic reaction to dust parasites, it is best to buy a vacuum cleaner specially designed to combat parasites - Philips FC6230. It has an EPA 12 filter that can hold 99.5 percent of dust and not let it out.

This is an important plus, because ticks and their excrement are so microscopic that they simply fly back into the room through the filters of ordinary cars. Therefore, on the contrary, non-specialized devices help parasites to spread throughout the room.

Even if you are not going to buy a professional car for collecting pests, at least change the old device to a washer. Also, this unit easily removes dirt from soft surfaces with the help of vibrating nozzles. It has good power and a built-in UV lamp.

The remaining areas in the room should be wiped with damp microfiber rags or anthers. The threads in such materials are arranged in a special way that small particles cling to them and cannot spread through the air around.

We clean a sleeping place.

Since most of the ticks live on our warm and comfortable beds, and especially in pillows, you need to protect yourself from them. Special sleeping accessories for allergy sufferers or just for those who want to improve their sleep and quality of life are sold.

For example, there are mattress covers that will not let in and release parasites, but also do not let water through, do not leave any pollution on themselves.

Therefore, if you like to have breakfast in bed, or your pet can sleep only nearby, then this mattress pad is created especially for you. For these mattress covers you can also buy pillowcases that do the same job.

It is also best to switch to sinteponovye pillows, and to refuse feather ones. Ticks do not like to live in an artificial pillow, and it will be much easier and faster to wash.

We use chemical poisons.

Even after these measures to remove these pests from your life, a decent amount of them will remain. Therefore, chemicals that protect your health from the effects of ticks living in dust go on. Below will be described the most popular means by which they struggle with ticks in the room.

In pharmacies or specialty stores, you can buy several types of goods that have the properties of dust mite bullying at home, but the methods of their use are slightly different. Also note the pros and cons of drugs.

Bedlam Plus is an aerosol that is little known in our latitudes, but customer reviews using this product indicate high efficiency not only against dust pests, but also bed bugs, fleas, moths. It also destroys eggs and larvae of parasites.

Acaril - sold as a suspension, which is added to the washing machine. The main active ingredient is methyl salicylate. It will help to remove not only excrement with allergens from things, but also to destroy harmful parasites.

In stores it is sold for 2500 rubles for 240 ml. It is indicated that at a certain dosage, the product can be washed 12 times. There are other chemicals for washing, the principle of action is the same.

+ Suitable for washing colored fabrics,
+ Water temperature doesn’t affect efficiency, any suitable one can be used,
- An expensive tool that must be added constantly to maintain the desired result,
- Can only be used to clean cloth items.

All-Rug - This is a shampoo that is designed to clean carpet products, toys, upholstered furniture, pillows and so on. Reviews say that it helps very well against dust pests. Sold in liquid form, bottles with a volume of 250-500ml, the cost is about 800 rubles.

At the initial stage of getting rid of ticks, you need to use the tool 3 times a month, then you can use it once every 3 months. All-Rug needs to be rubbed into the surface with a stiff brush or vacuum cleaner. At the end of the application, ventilation is mandatory.

+ Pleasant aroma,
+ Convenient processing,
+ Enough for a long time,
- Disinfection must be performed frequently.

X-Mite - this tool from dust mites involves dry cleaning of carpets and upholstered furniture. It is possible to buy in a package weighing 454 g, which should be enough for 14 square meters, it costs about 3300 rubles. It will help to remove not only small parasites, but also mold. It is applied once every 3 months.

+ Good smell
+ Effectiveness,
+ Non-toxic to humans,
- Too expensive powder,
- The packaging is small, you need several packs to clean the apartment.

Allergoff - an effective acaricidal agent - a spray that kills parasites and allergens from their metabolic products. Acaricides are locked in micro granules that gradually open and release a toxic substance for arachnids.

Therefore, the period of activity of the product after application can last up to six months. It has not only intestinal, but also contact effects. After bullying, wait until the poison is completely dry, then only put into operation. The cost for 400 ml is 1300 rubles, enough for disinfection of 20 square meters. Suitable for disinfecting various surfaces.

+ Effective result,
+ Lack of smell
+ Does not stain after use,
+ After disinfection, you can not ventilate, because the product is non-toxic to humans,
“The bottle could have been bigger.”

Of folk remedies, there is one of the most effective - a solution of salt. To do this, 200 g of salt should be dissolved in a liter of water. Rinse thoroughly with this fluid. The advantage of low cost, the lack of frequency of treatments - 2 or 3 times a month.

In our age of technology, you can easily prevent the appearance of a number of ticks that are hazardous to health. To do this, at the end of our total disinfection, you need to buy an air purifier home. The main thing is that it does not humidify the air and is equipped with a UV lamp.

With its help, parasites will die out in the air, and they cannot live without moist air. Small-weight devices are sold that you can take with you to the country or on a trip.

All the described actions must be repeated periodically, and general cleaning once a week is required. Especially if you or someone close to you has irritation. It can not be started, it is necessary to treat and as much as possible reduce the person’s contact with allergens.