If you’ve ever seen a photo of a dust mite, you know why you don’t want them in your sofa. They’re microscopic creatures that look somewhat like the spiders and ticks, that share their Arachnida classification. Dust mites thrive in warm, moist places like carpets, bedding, and sofa upholstery. They absorb needed moisture from humidity in the air, and they feed on dead skin cells. Dust mites can trigger attacks in those who already have asthma, and who are sensitive to their waste. Dust mite waste may also trigger asthma in children predisposed to develop asthma.
Dust mites tend to increase over time if they’re not destroyed, and the more dust mites in your sofa, the greater the chances that you or your family may develop mite-related allergies. Get rid of these unwanted house guests with these useful, sofa fixer tips!
- Dust mites thrive in places where dust accumulates, so decorate simply. Wooden flooring, metal blinds and couches without dust ruffles, dolls or additional pillows are easier to clean, and less likely to attract dust mites, than decorated pillows, fuzzy carpets, or textured throws. As a general rule, decorate your home with textiles that are plain, easily washable, and unlikely to trap dust.
Keep your furniture clean
- If you decorate your sofa with pillows, be sure to wash the pillows every week in hot water of 130 degrees, and change the pillows out every few months, to discourage dust mite infestations. Don’t decorate your sofa with items that cannot easily be washed, such as stuffed dolls, knitted blankets/throws, or textile artwork.
Steam Clean Periodically
- If your sofa is of the type that can be steam cleaned, you can reduce or eliminate dust mites with this method. Vapor steam cleaning has been shown to kill dust mites and is suitable for many kinds of upholstery.
- Dust mites need humidity to survive, so it makes sense to do what you can to reduce the humidity in your home. Buy a dehumidifying unit to reduce moisture in the air, and ensure that there is adequate ventilation in the sofa area. Don’t store things beside, behind, or under your couch that might block air flow, or create a dark, warm environment for mites.
If you follow these tips, you can protect your investment by reducing or eliminating dust mites from your sofa. But what if your sofa has a dust mite infestation, and yet cannot be easily steam cleaned? Sofas with fabrics that may not be safely steam cleaned, can still be rid of dust mites. A furniture pro can perform a complete sofa disassembly and reupholstery, removing and replacing cushions and coverings, and replacing them with newer, more current, and mite-free replacements. Leather or vinyl upholstery will make the new couch more mite-resistant.
There’s no reason to put up with the uncleanliness and allergy risk of a mite infestation. With a few simple precautions you can reduce or eradicate this health risk — and maybe even update the look of your living room, in the process.