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Why house dust allergy sufferers should not make their bed

Most people don’t know it any different from home: you get up in the morning, flip back the duvet and air the room. Then the bed is made because it simply looks neat. Many people of the older generation even today put a bedspread over the bed. This was taught to them by their parents and grandparents, because it’s easy to do when the actual bedding that you spend the night on is not visible. Typical German post-war behaviour – although bed mites thrive on it.




In this article we explain why you, as a house dust allergy sufferer, should not only do without the bedspread, but should not make your bed at all.

Bett mit Tagesdecke fördert Bettmilben

A bedspread/blanket on the bed is not good for house dust allergy sufferers | © @ VitalikRadko

Dust mites (bed mites) as allergy triggers

If you came to this page via our homepage, you already know that the house dust allergy is actually caused by the dust mite (house mite). Nevertheless, we would like to briefly explain once again how the connections are.

Anyone who is allergic to house dust is actually allergic to the mite faeces that have combined with the house dust. A single mite produces an amount of faeces in its lifetime that is 200 times its own weight. This excrement is very rich in protein.
If the faeces dry out after some time, it breaks down into microscopic particles that attach themselves to the house dust. By inhaling the dust, which is always present in the normal air we breathe, these protein building blocks reach the mucous membranes, the eyes and the lungs of the allergy sufferer concerned, which then triggers the actual allergy.

What is particularly bad for those affected is that the allergy can also affect the lungs. While at first you usually only get a simple cough and sputum, the allergy can have very bad consequences, for example if asthma or COPD develops.

Dust mites love beds

The dust mites love damp and warm, as well as a rich food supply. Then they have the ideal conditions to reproduce.

It is exactly these conditions that mites now find in bed. That’s why they are also called bed mites. In bed it is warm for many hours and the night sweat plus the humidity of the air we breathe not only ensures a high level of humidity, but also humidity inside the mattress. In addition, every night a person loses a large amount of skin flakes, on which the bed mites feed.
As a result, the mites multiply in large numbers. In a normal mattress alone, it is assumed that there are more than 1 million mites after 5-6 years of use. In addition to this, one must also count the high number of mites in pillows and duvets. It is certainly understandable what huge amounts of allergens accumulate here.

So why is making beds no good?

One of the best remedies against bed mites is to make living conditions worse. First and foremost, this can be achieved by reducing humidity and heat, as well as limiting the amount of food.

If you take the duvet and pillow off the bed or at least leave it open at the foot end, the mattress can release the moisture again throughout the day. If you also reduce the temperature in the bedroom, you have already done a lot against good living conditions for bed mites.

As a third pillar of these measures we then recommend purchasing mite-proof covers, so-called encasings, for the mattress, pillow and duvet. These covers allow almost no skin scales to pass through, so that the mites practically starve to death.

If you want to be 100 percent on the safe side, you can also vacuum your mattress once a week with a so-called mite vacuum cleaner.

Only by applying these simple measures should it be possible to reduce the house mites and thus the house dust allergy completely, or at least to a tolerable level.

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