Dust Mites Questions and Answers

Dust Mite Control

Dust Mite control are difficult to handle because these pests are extremely tiny. In a helping factor on controlling dust mites cleanliness and thorough vacuuming and also using a high-efficient filter will reduce the numbers in dust mites including their feces dramatically. To also help with the factors in controlling dust mites are controlling unnesecssary moisture. Places you should look to control dust mites are stuffed furniture, pillows, and mattresses.

To help eliminate and control dust mites we recommend:


PROTECT-A-BED ALLERZIP can be used to help with controlling dust mites. These covers allows heat and moisture to transfer out of the mattress while keeping liquids from seeping in, which in turn will keep the dust mites from appearing. To be sure of protection from dust mites be sure to cover your box spring also while covering the mattress.

How to use STERI-FAB the infested area should be sprayed thoroughly and repeatedly directing the spray into all crevices, cracks and other hiding places to control the dust mites.

How to use BEDLAM INSECTICIDE SPRAY first thoroughly vacuum entire room concentrating on areas where mites congregate: such as mattresses, box springs, headboards, walls, floors, carpeting, and baseboards. Then spray surfaces until damp. On mattresses allow spray to dry thoroughly before replacing bedding to help control dust mites.


Dust Mites Questions and Answers




For such a tiny bug dust mites get a lot of publicity. One reason may be because they are known to cause serious allergy responses in some people, and perhaps because of this they get blamed for allergies more than they are really responsible for. Dust mites do not bite, but make their living feeding on flakes of dry skin, which is called dander. They are nearly microscopic so you generally won’t see them marching across your furniture unless it were a really dark color and probably shiny…and you were looking really close. Dust mites are found pretty much everywhere, but require high humidities to build up sizeable populations. The University of California tells a lot of people in bone-dry California, who are concerned with dust mites, that they are unlikely to have them if they are living in the central valley of that state, where summer temperatures hang around 100 degrees but humidity is nil.In your question you indicate some lack of certainty on whether or not you actually have dust mites, and confirming that they are there would be important. If they are causing you health concerns with allergic responses, and you truly need to go through the steps to eliminate them, it can be pretty time consuming. On the internet you’ll find various websites (usually trying to sell you their products) that give outlandish claims about the presence of dust mites in homes. These include “up to 10 million dust mites in your mattress”, “10% of the weight of your pillow is dust mites”, “that humming at night is the sound of 2 million dust mites eating your dead skin”, “a third of the weight of your old pillow is dust mite feces”, and so on and so on. I would try to go to University sites rather than private sites for accurate information.Dust mites rely on humidity for survival, so controlling humidity in your home is a must if you are in areas where this is a problem. Temperatures should be kept below 70 degrees if possible, and this also reduces the populations of these mites. If you really do have the mites and problems from them then they likely are in your mattress too, and the mattress and boxspring can be enclosed in plastic covers, which Univar now sells for bedbugs as the AllerZip product line. If you have down pillows replace them with synthetic materials, encase the pillow in plastic, and wash pillow covers frequently. Washing and frequent vacuuming to remove the dander the mites feed on is also very helpful in reducing their ability to live well in a home. For vacuuming you should use a machine with a HEPA filter that can remove tiny particles, and elimination of dust on furniture, window sills, and other surfaces using a damp cloth that is then washed will also remove food supplies. Vacuuming may remove only a small percentage of the mites, but removing the dust and dander are your main concerns, and vacuuming also removes fecal matter, which also contributes to allergenic responses.

For a sofa it usually is impractical to encase it in plastic, although I have certainly seen this in some homes. The plastic would seal the mites inside and prevent more from getting to the folds in the sofa, and cleaning the plastic might be more efficient than cleaning the sofa and its interior. However, the sofa could be removed and steam cleaned or exposed to dry heat, killing any mites on it at that time. This would not prevent new mites from quickly inhabiting it, but other steps might help there. Pesticides certainly kill dust mites very well, but your hope is to avoid a reliance on pesticides by making the other changes in temperature, humidity, physical barriers, and cleaning that will give you long term relief. Synthetic pyrethroids, probably with an aerosol, can be directed into hard-to-reach places in the sofa and into crevices and seams. That thorough cleaning should be done first, and any pesticide application probably should not be expected to last for more than a few weeks.

The Mite With The Bite



Paper mites – I have commercial accounts that complain about paper mites biting them. We have inspected and found nothing. How do I explain to them that paper mites do not bite?

Donald, GA


Hi Donald. We can go one step further here and try to convince them that paper mites do not exist. There is no such animal as a “paper” mite, so I’m really glad you were unable to find any. From various articles I have read on this creature, paper mites were born from a nickname given to tiny particles of paper that would float around in the air in industrial plants, landing on the skin of people working there. As a joke they nicknamed these bits of paper as paper mites. Somewhere over the years the bits of paper seem to have grown legs and mouthparts and started biting, because even the medical profession will diagnose skin problems as being caused by the bites of paper mites, and will advise their clients to have the place fogged with pesticide. Once you get a doctor saying this it becomes even more difficult to dislodge the myth, and get your customers to believe you. I’d suggest you go to a university website that states clearly that there is no such animal as a paper mite – the public is more inclined to believe the university.At a recent NPMA program I asked a university researcher, who was talking on delusory parasitosis, why it is they have so much difficulty getting doctors to stop making incorrect diagnoses on such things. The answer was that the medical profession is not willing to learn from the pest control profession. In California the Univ of California has been on a years-long campaign to educate doctors that the Violin Spider does not live in the state, but it does not seem to have diminished the number of diagnoses of violin spider bites as the cause of every skin lesion. So, you have a little work cut out for you, but you are on the side of Truth, so hang in there. In your area of the country, with high humidity, perhaps it is dust mites, which commonly cause dermatitis and allergic responses on people, but unless you know for sure you cannot start treating.Now, since these employees believe something is biting them you do still have a role to play, but it does not involve pesticides unless you actually find something to treat for. Quite honestly, the feeling of something crawling on your skin is infectious. My wife worked in an office where this began going around one time, and she felt it was started by the receptionist, who told everyone that every time she went near certain filing cabinets something bit her. Pretty soon around 10 or 12 more people were feeling “bites” near those cabinets. When I spoke with the receptionist she told me that not only are “they” biting her, but when she goes home They jump off her and onto her husband and bite him too. I gotta tell you, ask I talked with her I even felt one of Them bite me…… but also realized it was pure imagination.

Your role begins with inspection and monitoring, and who knows??….. maybe you’ll be surprised and actually find mites present. There are plenty of common mites, such as rat or bird mites, that are present in buildings where their host animals also are, that may get onto people and bite them. You should place abundant numbers of paper insect glue traps around there, in strategic locations where they won’t get stepped on, and then examine the glue surface with good magnification. I recommend a dissecting microscope that allows you to magnify at least to around 80X, and you can get these economically from BioQuip Products in California – www.bioquip.com . It is amazing how you might see what looks like a tiny bug, but when magnified properly turns out to be lint or plant debris. But, if you do find a mite you can then get it accurately identified, research the habits of that particular mite, and then go about the appropriate control program.

For now though, please resist the temptation (or demands) to fog the place or apply pesticides “just to make sure”. This application could even resolve the problem. If it was their imagination that felt the bites it could also be their imagination that believes the pesticide must have killed the bugs, but applying pesticide for no reason is inappropriate. Stand firm with your opinion that paper mites are a myth, do not spray for paper mites, and monitor to determine what, if anything, actually is present that could bite or scratch or crawl on the skin. Some years ago a major pest control company was treating an office on a regular basis, spraying that office with pesticide for the control of paper mites. One of the employees there didn’t like pesticides and looked around a bit to find that there is no such thing as a paper mite. That person contacted the local newsmedia to report unnecessary spraying of toxic chemicals in their workplace, and the media was happy to plop a big headline on the paper naming this pest control company. This is bad publicity that none of us needs.


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Date: Wednesday, 13. January 2010 10:53
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  1. 1

    I have been having trouble, thought it was animal fleas, tried arosel bombs, next had the exterminator spray. the biting has stopped so the fleas have been stopped, but now I still have trouble. Seems that there is something crawling on me a lot ot the time, its driving me crazy. I think I have gotten it at work, I work for the goverment in a room with 200 to 250 persons and we don;t have a regular chair (padded) we move around a lot, so I believe this is the source, I work seasonally and this all started after I returned to work on Jan. 11 2010. I told the managers and they just seem to hide it from everyone and don’t really do anything about it. I went to a doctor who said I have dry skin and gave me name of lotion to use.

    Can you give me so advice before I go crazy.

    Thank you,


  2. 2

    Hmmm…this is hard.
    We don’t really know what’s causing the problem.
    From what I read, the flea problem is resolved, so I don’t think it is the same issue that you are having right now.

    Without really knowing what’s causing it,
    I really don’t have much to offer, unfortunately.

    In any case, I think we should listen to what the doctor tells us.
    Let’s try with what the doctor said.

    But if you have more question, please do ask.
    I’ll try my best to help.

  3. 3

    I’ve had dustmites from my car from my girl’s dog (a Newfoundland furry dog) who I had in my car many times in takig her to dog parks, etc. Obviously it traveled to my bed from my car and all that. I’ve moved state since by car travel and it’s in my house, bed and car. I’ve treated the bed several by a pro and my car. I knew I had to not sleep in the bes after the UV/vacuum treatment and with the car (I rented a rental for a week in order to isolate the mites after spray/UV treatment. My question is: How do I completely sanitize my apt and bedroom so it’s under control on a regular basis? I shower twice and day to remove them off my body due to the itchiness. Luckily I don’t have asthma but I have to get rid of them to live a normal life again. I have a good steam/vaporizer and a powerful UV want and a hepo vacuum cleaner. Thanks much!

  4. 4

    For dust mites on your bed, consider using a mattress encasement and a box spring encasement. Also, you can use products like Steri-Fab or Bedlam to spray around the mattress. Steri-fab is a great contact kill spray that is good for initial treatment. It does not have a residual and once it is dry it will not have a killing effect, however, many people choose to use this product for dust mite control. Bedlam is a little bit different. It is a pressurized aerosol that you cannot use as a surface treatment, but you can only apply around the mattress lining and the cracks and crevices. Bedlam however, has a killing effect even after it dries for up to 1 month and so you will not have to continue to spray.

  5. 5

    I think my allergies might be related to dust mites, however, I can’t answer 1 question: how is it that most of the week, I’ll be fine, and then 1 morning wake up and I’ll be sneezing and congested like crazy? If it’s dust mites in the carpeting, bedding, etc., wouldn’t this be happening everyday??

  6. 6

    Hi frenico03,
    Huh, that is odd. In all honesty, I can’t give you a definite answer. Maybe there’s a certain area where the dust mites crawl that just triggers those allergies? I honestly can’t say; I’ve never heard of this happening before, haha! I’m sorry I can’t be of more help than this! But I do know that people with dust mite related allergies don’t get them everyday. I have heard of a few instances in which the allergies would randomly start up again.

  7. 7

    I have had dust mites for about two years now. I cannot tell you all of the preventive steps that I have taken to control these dust mites, a few of the items being satin sheets($35 king size 4 piece satin sheet set at Sears) and satin caftans (the satin caftans were on sale for $13.99 at Sears On Line) help a lot as does the dehumidifier among a mountain of other things that I could not afford but had to have.

    My good news is about how I have almost stopped the dust mites from going into my mouth
    nose, eyelashes and ears.

    For the mouth I took a piece of my loofah and put some epsom salts on the loofah and I scrubbed my chin, around my mouth, lips included with the loofah and epsom salts. After doing this last night, today I only had two or three small dust mites in my mouth in comparison that I used to have of about s few dozen dust mites. I also applied a diluted bleach and water solution to the area.

    For the nose, I took the small piece of loofah and applied epsom salts to it and I scrubbed the area around my nose and then I also applied a diluted bleach and water solution. I use the bleach and water spray as Bird Mites.Org tells me that the loofah, epsom salts and a solution of diluted bleach and water will kill the mites.

    Usually when I sort of scrub my chins with my finger right under my bottom lip I can feel the scratchiness of the mites being there. Today, almost nothing.

    My eyelashes used to have a lot of follicle mites, now I scrupulously clean the eyelashes and after that I apply baby oil to the lashes. The baby oil causes the mites to lose their grip on the eyelashes. My eyelashes now, while they sill have some mites, they are a lot fewer than before I did this.

    The ears, I wear ear plugs. I also make sure that I do not sleep on a cotton pillow case as cotton draws dust mites. they just love cotton! I have satin and since taking baths with epsom salts and the loofah I can honestly say that I felt only about a half dozen mites on my body last night

    Mind you, though, I am drinking 5 teaspoons daily of white vinegar and water. Ever since drinking that solution the dust mites have lost interest in me.

    Sure hope this helps, it has sure helped me.

    God Bless

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