Unmade bed deters dust mites, good for health

on July 06 2010 7:29 PM

British researchers are claiming that an unmade bed is good for the health because house dust mites don't survive on it thereby minimising or eliminating allergens that trigger asthma and allergies.

The researchers from London's Kingston University learned that dust mites die in a dry or moisture-less environment, a condition found in an untidy bed.

Something as simple as leaving a bed unmade during the day can remove moisture from the sheets and mattress so the mites will dehydrate and eventually die, explains researcher Dr. Stephen Pretlove, according to BBC.

Pretlove said the goal of their research is to come up with healthy building and home designs that deter dust mites, which induce illnesses costing £700 million to treat each year.

In contrast, the warmth and dampness of an occupied bed enable the less than a millimeter long bugs to survive. A bed can harbor some 1.5 million house dust mites feeding on scales of human skin. The bugs produce allergens inhaled during sleep.

The researchers used a computer model to determine the number of dust mites in beds. The bugs' population apparently lessens depending on changes in the home.

Further experiments will be conducted in local homes, this time to determine how household routines and building features affect dust mite population.

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