Dust, Dust-Mites, and Dusting

Published on 30 January 2023 at 21:39

Dust, Dust-Mites, and Dusting

Everyone everywhere has to deal with some level of dust and, like it or not,  dust Mites. Have you ever wondered what dust really is and where it comes from? Did you know that if you have dust,  then you also have dust mites. Dust and dust-mites can be dangerous to your health.  There is a proper way to remove and control the dust and dust-mites in your life. 

What is Dust?

Dust is a mixture of everything in your environment including toxins, and it is a large contributor to allergies.  Dust is made of things that fall off people directly such as dead skin, hair, clothing fibers, and cosmetic products.  It is also made of items within a space that dry and flake off like paint, wood, drywall, plastic, metal, and even electronics.  Other things inside a space that can contribute to dust could include carpet fluff, pet hair and dander,  books, food packages,  and food debris.  Exhaust from cooking, smoking, or fireplaces will also settle inside in the form of dust.  That is just some of the inside contributors of dust.   Approximately 60% of most household dust comes from outside.   These outside dusts will either travel inside on shoes or clothing or float in and settle. Dust contributors from outside can include soil, pollen, soot, ash, minerals,  and/or sand. Most dust has also been found to contain some levels of lead arsenic. Lead can come from auto exhaust,  soil deposits,  smelting,  or other industrial processes.   Arsenic can also come from industrial processes,  smelting,  mining,  or burning fossil fuels.  Dust from outside can be different according to where you live or work.  Heavy pollutants will settle close to their source,  but lighter particles can float up to 100 miles away before settling.  If you are allergic to any of these items,  then contact with the dust will cause you to have a reaction.  Just about all dust also includes dead bugs,  dead bug parts,  bug waste,  bacteria,  mold,  viruses, and dust-mites. 

What are Dust Mites?

Dust-mites are small, white, spider-like, bugs that can only be seen with a microscope.  They travel by burying themselves into fibers of cloth or floating through the air.  They do not fly. They live on clothing,  mattresses,  carpets,  and curtains.  Dust-mites feed on dead human skin cells, but they do not bite people.  Since you can not see them or feel them,  it is hard to realize that they are around you, but they are.  Dust-mites do not drink water.  Instead,  they absorb moisture from the air,  so they thrive in warm humid settings.  Dust-mites leave behind urine,  feces,  and decaying bodies.   What they leave behind can be inhaled and cause allergic reactions.  Dust-mites are responsible for over 20 million allergies in the US, and they are one of the major triggers of asthma attacks.  One dust-mite can produce 200 times its body weight in waste during its life span.   Males only live about 1 month, but females can live up to 90 days.  A female dust-mite will lay up to 3 eggs every day of its life.  

How To Get Ride Of Dust?

The amount of dust that accumulates in an area can depend on many factors like the location,  the season, how many people or animals are in the area,  industries in the area, and how clean the area is kept. It is impossible to get rid of dust because it literally comes from everywhere and everything,  but you can minimize the dust with regular dusting.  While dusting,  always remember that when dust is disturbed,  it will recirculate and pick up new substances before settling again. This is why it is better to trap dust in a wet cloth or mop instead of merely moving it around.  You should always begin at the top and back of an area and work your way forward and down. Always dust first then vacuum and/or mop. While you are dusting,  it is best to close windows and shut off fans to help keep the dust from scattering.  Keeping dust to a minimal level will also help lower the level of dust-mites in the area,  but there are other precautions that you can take to ensure less dust-mites are in your life.  Washing clothes, bedding, and curtains in hot water will kill the dust-mites living in those items. Rugs and carpets should be deep cleaned often. Using washable mattress and pillow covers with zippers will help protect those items from dust and dust-mites.  Use filters that capture allergens in the vacuum,  furnace,  and air conditioner,  and keep the humidity under 50%. 


We can not stop dust or dust-mites from invading our space, but with the proper techniques and precautions,  we can control the levels of dust and dust-mites that stay in our space. By controlling the levels of dust and dust-mites in our lives,  we can also lower our chances of allergies and asthma attacks caused by dust and dust-mites.  


At Allbright Systems 2 We pride ourselves on keeping up with all areas where dust collects. Please call or email us to get a free quote.

  • Dust /dəst/ (noun) - fine, dry powder consisting of tiny particles of earth or waste matter lying on the ground or on surfaces or carried in the air. Definition from Oxford Languages
  • The average American household has an average of 40lbs of dust per year. - Bookdirtbusters.com



  • The average adult sheds 500 million skin cells daily, and 1.5 grams of dead skin cells can feed up to 1 million dust-mites at a time. 

Livescience.com   &    healthline.com

by Stacey Renfro

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