I used to wake up with congestion and bad headaches. After following these simple tips, I haven't had a headache in years!! Here are our tips for attaining a bedroom free of dust, dust mites and most other allergens.
- Clear out your bedroom of all surplus objects. Aim for that "Spartan" bare look. Less objects collect less dust.
- Eliminate all the dust by vacuuming with a good quality HEPA vacuum cleaner such as a Miele or Sebo. This means using the special onboard tools to get into those hard to reach places such as tops of pictures, tops of doors and windows, corners, blinds, lampshades, and underneath the bed and furniture. Vacuum with the HEPA vacuum twice weekly. Do not use a cloth dusting rag. It will just redistribute the dust and aggravate your allergens.
- Keep your humidity level at less than 50 percent. A good bedroom dehumidifier with quiet operation will reduce the humidity in the room to a level where dust mites and mold will not flourish.
- Use a high quality HEPA air purifier to filter out allergens. Find one with a large enough square foot coverage to sufficiently clean the air in your bedroom while running on a low fan speed. This way you do not have to live with the noise of an air purifier running on a high fan speed. Our favorite bedroom air purifiers are the Blueair Air Purifiers.
- Use a Swiffer dust mop to keep down the dust bunnies on hardwood floors in between vacuuming. You will be surprised at how much dust they can pick up; even on a daily basis.
- Remove as many carpets and draperies as you can possibly stand. They are a prime harbinger of dust mites. Just use a little washable cotton rug by your bedside to save your feet from freezing in winter.
- Wash your bedding weekly in 140 degree water [turn up your water heater setting] to kill dust mites. You can add tannic acid or use a commercial cleaner containing tannic acid to eliminate the dust mites. Just look on the label for the ingredients.
- Use very fine, wafer thin filtration material at point of entry to your bedroom for forced air heating systems. This keeps allergens from entering the bedroom. If you use fabric that is too thick the air will not be able to pass through effectively and your bedroom will be cold.
- Have your duct work professionally cleaned every three years. Be careful and choose a certified duct cleaner. All duct cleaning services are not made equal.
- Don't forget to change the filters for your room air conditioner. Do you really want to breathe in mold and dust allergens blown out by a dirty air conditioner?
- Change your furnace filter regularly. Use a tightly pleated disposable furnace filter (not the kind you can see through) or even better, a electrostatic furnace filter. These filters will catch a lot of dust at the point of entry into a house. We really like the Blueair furnace filters.
- Close your closet door. Clothes are collectors of dust and particulates.
- Cover your bed with dust mite covers that have a pore size of less than 6 microns for maximum effectiveness and vacuum your bed weekly. You want bedding that is impervious to dust mites and will not allow dust mites to breed - plain and simple. Much to our surprise there is quite a variation in effectiveness between dust mite covers from different vendors. Pore size is critical. You can see our detailed comparison of dust mite covers on our website.
- Use a steam cleaner on your bedding to assist in killing dust mites between washes. A handheld steam cleaner like the EnviroMate PRONTO P7 by Reliable is ideal. The hot temperature of the steam will kill the dust mites. Take advantage of the freezing weather. Put pillows, stuffed toys or anything that could host dust mites into plastic bags and put them outside in the deep freeze. Yes, the frost kills those little bugs.