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#1 of 13 Old 01-04-2011, 06:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ds (3) probably has allergies to dust mites, as he seems to wake up with puffy eyes, and has reddish areas under his eyes, close to his nose.  I hate to put him through skin testing at this point, and have been trying various means to controlling the dust in the bedroom.  I bought a mattress cover and pillow covers, but I'm confused about how often I should be washing them.  The mattress cover zips around the mattress, and is a big pain to take off/put on...does that need to be washed every week?  Is there a website or checklist of other things I should be doing?  There are no rugs in the bedroom, and we have tile flooring, but we live in Florida, so the humidity is pretty high and it seems that dust level is high too.

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#2 of 13 Old 01-04-2011, 08:06 AM
 
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If humidity is high, it seems like dust mites should be lower. We took all the stuffed animals out of DD1's room. Made sure all her bedding was hot water washable every week (she'd had a homemade quilt that we put away and opted for a comforter that could stand the washing). We switched to Roman shades instead of heavy curtains (they can be wiped down easily).  She didn't need to take her allergy medicine about two weeks after we started those measures. She was skin tested so we knew it was dust/dust mites/cat (and we didn't have a cat).


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#3 of 13 Old 01-04-2011, 08:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kjbrown92 View Post

If humidity is high, it seems like dust mites should be lower. We took all the stuffed animals out of DD1's room. Made sure all her bedding was hot water washable every week (she'd had a homemade quilt that we put away and opted for a comforter that could stand the washing). We switched to Roman shades instead of heavy curtains (they can be wiped down easily).  She didn't need to take her allergy medicine about two weeks after we started those measures. She was skin tested so we knew it was dust/dust mites/cat (and we didn't have a cat).


According to one website:

 

http://lancaster.unl.edu/pest/resources/dustmites311.shtmlQuote:


To thrive, dust mites need very warm temperatures (75-80 degrees F) and high humidity levels -- 70-80 percent relative humidity. One study showed when humidity is 60 percent or lower, the mite population stops growing and dies out.

 

So, do you wash the mattress cover, too?  Do you have a special vacuum cleaner?  How old is your daughter and how did she handle the skin testing?  

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#4 of 13 Old 01-04-2011, 08:16 AM
 
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Dust mites love humidity.  I have extreme allergies to dust mites and live in Fl too.  Here's what I do to control the dustmites and dust.

 

No carpets except those that can be washed.  Wash linens weekly or at least every 2 weeks on hot water, high heat drying. Including curtains, comforters, comforter covers, all sheets, pillowcasess.  I would leave the mattress cover on wash every 3-4 weeks,  Is it cotton?  If it's plastic you can leave it in place and trap the dustmites in the mattress.  

 

Google "lowering dust mites".

 

Air out the room, open windows, turn on fans.  Make sure fans are clean.  Dust room weekly w/wet cloth.  

 

How old is the mattress? If it's real old it might be teeming with dust mites.

 

In FL, you can't control the humidity too much except with the a/c and heater and even those might be contributing.  Change air filters often and use one especially for allergies. You might consider having your vents cleaned out professionally.   Air out room often.  Wear fresh pjs every night.  Cotton ones.  

 

Eliminate stuffed animals in bedrooms, they are dust magnets.  Eliminate clutter in bedrooms so there is less place for dust and mites to live.

 

That should do it!  Fresh air is a must, as are clean linens weekly, washed and dried on HOT.  


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#5 of 13 Old 01-04-2011, 11:00 AM
 
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we just removed the carpet in ds's room and he is 100% better in 2 days.  Much less congestion and the dark circles are completely gone.

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#6 of 13 Old 01-04-2011, 11:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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we just removed the carpet in ds's room and he is 100% better in 2 days.  Much less congestion and the dark circles are completely gone.



Wow, I would love a magic solution like that!!!  But we have no carpet to begin with.  Although my hubby keeps putting an Oriental type rug into the room, and I keep taking it out.  

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#7 of 13 Old 01-06-2011, 01:11 PM
 
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Get a DURABLE (ie probably expenisve) cotton style/no backing bathroom mat that is MACHINE WASHABLE if you NEED a rug in the room. I have found the cheapies just start to unravel after too many washes...

 

Do you have a HEPA air filter? Hunter is a less expensive but efficient brand, Holmes, Bioron (?) are other brand names. The Hunter machines aren't too expensive to start out with but replacement filters can be! Amazon always seems to have the cheapest price. And get a machine specifically for that size bedroom's square footage. Run it 24-7 for a week or two, if symptoms are better under control, then only run it at night. If there is another room in the house (like livingroom, playroom?) where the child spends ALOT of time, get an aircleaner for that room too. Get a vacuum cleaner that uses hepa technology too. I have a Kenmore Canister vac with hepa filter bags. I personnaly like cansister vacs better on hard floors.

 

I like the 'National Allergy' catalog. They have a website too.

Did you encase the box spring too? On my bed, we went the cheaper route on the boxspring (basically plastic/vinyl casing) and got a more expensive cloth like encasing for the mattress, and it gets washed maybe once a year because I also use a typical mattress pad/protector and wash that when i strip the bed with the sheets.

 

Get a new pillow and get a GOOD protector  like those from National Allergy. I have some cheapies  (from target? or Bed Bath and beyond?) and they only lasted 1-2 years, while I still have one from the catalog that is going on 10 yrs old and still works fine! But having a cheapie is great for backup or to pack for traveling.

 

Get a dust mite product from the catalog to spray/clean your main furniture (like the sofa or recliner) because even that will help. And/or get your furniture high-heat steam cleaned!

 

Ditto the new jammies every night. Keep the dirty close hamper someplace other than the bedroom.

 

Consider allergy shots. Greatly reduced my reactivity/how much I am affected. Results will vary person to person and may change with age (ie puberty, and in my case, pregnancy) Somepeople need a short treatment once in their life, others may have treatments for 2-3 years.

 

A lot of these things can be expensive, so just do what you can for now, and set aside money for more later! Air cleaner for the bedroom should be priority, and the machine should last at least 10 yrs if cleaned and cared for and filters replaced when needed. Second would be treatment of other rooms and furniture (like livingroom sofa)

 

Good luck!

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#8 of 13 Old 01-07-2011, 11:17 AM
 
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yeahthat.gif  I got a HEPA Air Filter from Target a few months ago, it has a permanent Filter that can be cleaned and has "pre filters" that are changed every 2 months.  The unit was on sale for $99 and the prefilters are $12 every 2 months.  Its a Honeywell brand and I only run it at night.  Wool is dust mite resistant.  That's what we use for mattress pads, even in FL where it's hot.  Wool is temperature regulating, keep you cool and warm.  EVERYTHING else is 100% cotton than can be washed regularly and will hold up to multiple washes.  TJMAXX and Marshalls or Ross have the cotton rugs without rubber backing that hold up well for pretty cheap.  Don't get rubber backing or else it will fall apart after a few washes.  Even curtains are 100% cotton so that they can be washed.  


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#9 of 13 Old 01-07-2011, 01:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lmk1 View Post

According to one website:

 

http://lancaster.unl.edu/pest/resources/dustmites311.shtmlQuote:


To thrive, dust mites need very warm temperatures (75-80 degrees F) and high humidity levels -- 70-80 percent relative humidity. One study showed when humidity is 60 percent or lower, the mite population stops growing and dies out.

 

So, do you wash the mattress cover, too?  Do you have a special vacuum cleaner?  How old is your daughter and how did she handle the skin testing?  

 

That's odd because ours are much worse in the winter and we have super low humidity with 1-2 woodstoves going.

 

We have mattress covers on every mattress with a 10-year guarantee. Yes, we wash the mattress cover too. When we first got married, I got the best vacuum cleaner I could find with a HEPA filter, which at the time was a $300 Electrolux upright because of DH's allergy-induced asthma (and one of those allergies is dust/dust mites). It's still fantastic, and going strong. My DD1 is 13yo but she had the scratch testing about 4-5 years ago. DD2 had intradermal testing (actual needles under the skin instead of just a scratch) when she was 2yo, and DS had scratch testing when he was little-little, like maybe 6 months?

 


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#10 of 13 Old 01-07-2011, 03:11 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marimara View Post

yeahthat.gif  I got a HEPA Air Filter from Target a few months ago, it has a permanent Filter that can be cleaned and has "pre filters" that are changed every 2 months.  The unit was on sale for $99 and the prefilters are $12 every 2 months.  Its a Honeywell brand and I only run it at night.  Wool is dust mite resistant.  That's what we use for mattress pads, even in FL where it's hot.  Wool is temperature regulating, keep you cool and warm.  EVERYTHING else is 100% cotton than can be washed regularly and will hold up to multiple washes.  TJMAXX and Marshalls or Ross have the cotton rugs without rubber backing that hold up well for pretty cheap.  Don't get rubber backing or else it will fall apart after a few washes.  Even curtains are 100% cotton so that they can be washed.  

 

 

i think i looked into wool mattress pads and they are very costly, do you just use topper pads or the whole zipper incasement kind?

 

I am looking for ds a nice mattress pad/encasement to control his allergies and also our king size bed eventually.
 


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#11 of 13 Old 01-07-2011, 05:15 PM
 
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Really happy with the quality of the dust mite covers, etc. that I bought at Organic Grace.

http://organicgrace.com/taxonomy/term/126

Plus it is run by an MDC momma! thumb.gif

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#12 of 13 Old 01-08-2011, 07:57 AM
 
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We also notice a strong correlation between environmental allergies and food allergies. When we eat something we are allergic to, we have a lot more problems with our environmental allergies, including dust mites.


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#13 of 13 Old 01-08-2011, 11:08 PM
 
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anyone try this encasement?

 

http://www.bedbathstore.com/10coalmaandp.html

 

it doesn't say how often it should be washed, but it may difficult to wash often on a king bed. Also i don't see any info on blocking mold spores. The dr. definitely said ds has a mold and or ragweed allergy, so that is important to block as well.

 

here's another one i am looking at:

 

http://www.achooallergy.com/mattress-covers.asp

 

 

 

how important is it to have all cotton vs. polyester/cotton blend? I am not sure of all the options, but it looks like smaller pore size would be better, and i found on the second site the encasements should be washed 3-4 times a year.

 


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