What is a Dust Mite allergy?
A dust mite allergy is not in fact an allergy to dust mites. The allergic reaction is caused by exposure to dust mites cast skins, faecal material and secretions which are found in household dust.
Those with dust mite allergies often suffer the most inside their own homes or in other people’s homes.
Their symptoms often worsen during or immediately after vacuuming, sweeping and dusting. The process of cleaning can stir up dust particles, making them easier to inhale.
There are many substances in dust which can trigger allergies, including animal dander, mold spores and pollen.
The most common allergens within house dust are produced by dust mites. Dust mites are tiny creatures that live in close association with humans. Their primary food is skin scales (dander) shed from humans and animals.
Most homes are likely to have detectable levels of house dust mites and their allergy inducing fragments. These fragments from the dust mites contain powerful allergens which are found within their cast skins, faecal material and secretions.
It is these allergens that bring the many symptoms, discomfort and suffering to people who are sensitive to them.
Dust mite allergy symptoms include:
- Runny nose
- Itchy, red or watery eyes
- Nasal congestion
- Itchy nose or throat
- Postnasal drip
- Facial pressure and pain
- Swollen skin under your eyes
If you have asthma you may also experience:
- Difficulty with breathing
- Chest tightness or an itching sensation
- A whistling or wheezing sound when exhaling
- Trouble sleeping caused by difficulty with breathing or wheezing
- Bouts of coughing or wheezing
A dust mite allergy can range from mild to severe. A mild case of dust mite allergy may cause an occasional runny nose, watery eyes and sneezing. In severe cases, the condition may be ongoing (chronic), resulting in persistent sneezing, cough, congestion, facial pressure or severe asthma attack.