The last thing you want in your bed is an infestation of dust mites. These horrid little creatures will camp up in your mattress, feasting on the bits of human skin that we shed during the night.

But it’s not actually the mites themselves that cause us harm – even more disgustingly it’s the droppings that these dust mites leave behind that give us grief. Which is quite scary when you think that each miniscule dust mite can defecate around 20 times a day. Indeed, it’s thought that if a dust mite infestation if left untouched will, after two years, account for 10% of your pillow’s weight, which is really disturbing!

Mite-BlogYet it’s not just the “ick-factor” that makes dust mites and their droppings such a problem in our sleep. It’s the fact that these dust mite droppings can really adversely affect your health too -  especially if you’re an asthma sufferer. It’s thought that around 80% of asthma sufferers will be sensitive to these droppings and can even cause asthma symptoms in others. Worse still, these droppings can cause an intense itchiness, especially in the legs, that will keep you awake at night.

But what causes a home to get dust mites? Well a recent study has found that getting dust mites is nothing more than a postcode lottery and some differing hygiene habits. Depending on what town you live in, you’ll have a different percentage risk of getting an infestation with the UK average being an alarming 57% chance. Cities such as Leeds were particularly high at risk at 65% chance with Glasgow and Southampton close behind.

Of course, all is not lost, getting rid of dust mites isn’t as hard as you might think. You simply need to add a few easy housekeeping tips and you’ll soon find you’re back to a full night’s sleep in no time:

1: Check the Age of Your Mattress

An old, worn mattress is less likely to be able to deter dust mites from moving in. Instead you should consider an anti-allergy mattress. You can even get anti-allergy pillows and duvets that will similarly help keep the mites at bay. Plus, an old mattress is unlikely to give you the spinal support that you need to get a good night’s sleep anyway.

2: Wash Your Sheets at High Temperatures

In order to kill off dust mites and get rid of their droppings you should wash your linen at least once a week at high temperatures. Preferably over 60 degrees, you could even go to 80 degrees to ensure all the bugs are gone. When you’re not using a certain linen set, store it safely in a linen cupboard too.

3: Keep Your Mattress and Room Clean

Hoovering your mattress and areas surrounding your mattress regularly will help lift up any droppings left behind. You can also get cleaners that are safe for your mattresses that you can use every few months to keep your mattress fresh. Not only will this help keep away irritation but it will also keep your mattress in good condition and make it last longer.