Most people are familiar with common substance allergens like pollen, dander, and mold. But many people don’t know that one omnipresent substance — dust — is a very common allergen, too.
Yes, it’s possible to be allergic to the dust that settles on surfaces around your house, in your vehicle, and even in your bedsheets. And if you’ve been dealing with mysterious, allergy-like symptoms and can’t seem to find a cause, dust may be the culprit.
Why might you be allergic to dust? And is there anything you can do to lessen your symptoms? Read on to find out.
What Causes Dust Allergies?
Although regular household dust is composed primarily of dead skin, it also contains tons of microscopic particles that can trigger allergy symptoms. These include:
● Pollen and hair
● Mold and mildew spores
● Pest droppings
● Chemical residues
● Volatile organic compounds
It’s these microscopic particles that can send your immune system into overdrive when you inhale dust, or, in some cases, even touch it.
Lots of folks are also allergic to dust mites — which are microscopic arachnids that feed on the dead skin dust contains — and their droppings. Since a single gram of dust can contain nearly 20,000 mites, it should come as no surprise that encountering even a small amount of dust can trigger allergy symptoms.
How Can You Tell If You May Have a Dust Allergy?
Think you might be allergic to the dust that’s floating around your house? If you are, you’ve likely noticed one or more of the following symptoms:
● Runny or stuffy nose
● Itchy throat, mouth, or nose
● Red, watery, or itchy eyes
● Swollen under-eye skin
● Facial pressure, especially around your sinuses and under your eyes
● Postnasal drip (fluid that drips into your throat from your sinuses)
If you’re allergic to dust mites, you may notice your symptoms become more pronounced at night or in the morning after you’ve spent considerable time near your bedding. That’s because dust mites love to live in your sheets, inside your pillow, and in your comforter where they have a plentiful supply of your dead skin cells to feed on.
What Can You Do to Help Control a Dust Allergy?
Professional duct cleaning is one of the simplest and most effective ways to cut down the amount of dust in your home and control dust-related allergy symptoms.
Your air ducts can accumulate copious amounts of dust over time, and as air travels through those ducts, it can carry with it small particles that end up inside your living spaces. To control dust buildup inside your home, it’s a good idea to schedule duct cleaning at two- to five-year intervals.
Other things you can do to help cut down on indoor dust include:
● Install an air purification system
● Dust using microfiber tools that capture dust, not just push it around
● Change your sheets weekly
● Wash your bedding frequently
● Vacuum frequently
● Change your HVAC filters according to the package directions (every 30-90 days is ideal)
If you feel like you’re constantly cleaning and can’t seem to get a handle on your household dust, check out 8 Tips for Controlling Dust Accumulation in Your Home for helpful tips.
Schedule Professional Duct Cleaning in the Twin Cities
If you’re suffering from dust-related allergies inside your home, let our team at Dust Doctors help you out! For more than a decade, we’ve provided Twin Cities homeowners with comprehensive duct cleaning and HVAC maintenance services, and we’d love to help you improve your indoor air quality, too. Give us a call today at 651-319-9777 or request a quote online to get started!
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