Making your bed first thing in the morning may not be as beneficial as you’ve been led to believe.
In fact, scientists are saying that making your bed can lock in humidity in your mattress and sheets, making them the perfect breeding ground for dust mites and bed bugs.
It just goes to show that sometimes, it pays to be messy.
What are Dust Mites?
Dust mites are microscopic arachnids that feed off of dead skin and sweat. Nearly every home in North America is contaminated with dust mites.
A study in 2000 found that more than 45% of American homes had detectable dust mite levels associated with the development of allergies, and 23% had bedding with concentrations of allergen high enough to trigger asthma attacks.
These bugs tend to get trapped in the fibers of bed linens, furniture cushions and carpeting. Scientists estimate that there could be as many as 1.5 million dust mites living in the average bed.
What Are the Health Effects?
Dust mites are actually one of the many cause of dust allergies, as an estimated 10-25% of Americans are sensitive to these bugs.
Common symptoms of dust allergy include:
- Runny nose
- Itchy, red or watery eyes
- Nasal congestion
- Itchy nose, roof of mouth or throat
- Postnasal drip
- Facial pressure and pain
- red, itchy bumps on the skin
- Swollen, blue-colored skin under your eyes
- In a child, frequent upward rubbing of the nose
These mites produce waste which contains proteins that reacts with your immune system. Your body then creates antibodies to fight off these allergens, which causes an inflammatory response in your nasal passages or lungs.
Chronic inflammation and obstruction of these nasal passages contributes to the development of asthma and sinus infection.
In fact dust mites are a common cause of asthma in children and cause wheezing in 50% of asthmatics.