June 14, 2010

Don’t let the Dust Mites Bite.

This info comes via my favorite green home and office cleaners, Clean Conscience.

Waylon, we’re considering adding mattress cleaning and sanitizing to our list of services. Why mattress cleaning? Be prepared to get itchy!

Dust Mites are tiny creatures that are members of the Arachnid (spider) family. They thrive in temperatures of more than 70°F and the moisture derived from perspiration and saliva. These are the conditions found almost exclusively within the mattresses you and your family sleep on every night. Bacteria infested flakes of dry skin from you and your pets offer Dust Mites a rich source of food. Their reproductive rate is very high. Up to 2,500 Dust Mites have been counted in one gram of dust. That means there are up to two million Dust Mites in one double size mattress! Each Dust Mite excretes approximately 20 pellets of excrement a day which contain allergens in the form of protease enzymes. These can attack the protective lining of the nose, throat and lungs. Moving around in bed makes the allergens airborne and easy to inhale. This stimulates the body’s immune system, triggering the symptoms of asthma and rhinitis. More and more scientific evidence points to the fact that this Dust Mite excrement and the skeletons of dead Dust Mites are a cause of allergies and related problems e.g. asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, inflammation of the mucous membranes, reddening of the eyes and itching. It can also be a contributory factor to skin diseases including dermatitis and eczema. According to Darryl C. Zeldin, acting clinical director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, some 18% to 30% of Americans are allergic to the mites’ waste products. A government-led study found that nearly half of all U.S. homes have levels of allergen significant enough to trigger a sensitivity even in people who weren’t previously allergic, he adds.

We would begin by pre-vacuuming all sides of the mattress with an anti-allergen vacuum. This will eliminate all of the loose contaminates in your bed. Next, we sanitize the entire mattress with steam that reaches temperatures over 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Since dust mites are killed at temperatures of 135 degrees Fahrenheit we ensure these pests don’t stand a chance. The final step is to again vacuum the mattress in order to remove the mites killed by the steam treatment. The entire process will take about 20 to 30 minutes for a typical mattress and the dry time is minimal. The service is recommended every six months and prices range between $45 and $75 depending on the size of the bed.

Mattress cleaning services are abundant in the UK and Australia, but have yet to become mainstream in the United States.

Best Regards,

Greg Macchia | Founder/Owner

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