Among the most common asthma triggers are tiny little critters called dust mites that live amid the dust in your home. They are seemingly everywhere all at once, although they are too small to be seen by the naked eye. If you have allergies and asthma, they can make your life miserable, although with a bit of wisdom you can learn to control them.
Dust mites thrive in warm, humid environments where people and animals live. They feed off flakes of skin that fall off of us. They are ugly little critters that are related to spiders. In fact, they look like creepy little spiders.
They live on bedding, mattresses, upholstered furniture, carpets and curtains. At any one time there can be hundreds or even thousands of these critters on any one item.
While creepy in appearance, dust mites are completely harmless to about 90 percent of people. The rest of us, the other 10 percent, develop an abnormal response to them called an alle...
House Dust and Asthma
In this entry, I would like to discuss how house dust and dust mites contribute to asthma in adults and children. There are also strategies you can use to control your and your child’s exposure to dust and dust mites, an important indoor asthma trigger for many individuals.
What is dust allergy?
While we often can see dust floating indoors and gathering on surfaces, it is not typically the dust to which people are allergic, but rather substances that are carried on the dust that cause hayfever symptoms and/or wheeze.
Dust is a combination of many substances, including pet dander, fabric particles, and small dust mite particles, to name a few. While high levels of dust can lead to irritation of the nose and lungs without allergy, the most common allergens on dust are pet dander, cockroach particles, and house dust mites. Allergy to these specific triggers can be assessed by skin testing or blood testing. Allergy to these triggers that may make up part of dust i...
The beginning of summer kicks off the camping and hiking season, anxiously awaited by those who have endured a long cold winter. This year will likely prove to be one of the busier camping seasons as many Americans bypass more expensive vacations that involve pricey airline tickets or gas guzzling road trips. Emergency department staff will probably see a greater number of people with contact dermatitis caused by exposure to poison ivy, poison oak or poison sumac. Many people have never seen poison ivy , or perhaps wouldn't recognize it if they saw it. Poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac belong to the plant genus Toxicodendron (previously referred to as Rhus ). Toxicodendron means "poisonous tree." These plants have an oil-based substance in the resin on their leaves and in their stems and branches called urushiol that causes a delayed skin reaction in about 50% of people that contact it. Urushiol may cause severe contact dermatitis in people that have previousl...
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