It’s not unusual for a dusty room to cause a few sneezes here and there. But when those few sneezes turn into constant sneezing, watering eyes and congestion, there might be something more serious going on. If this sounds familiar, you might have an unknown house dust mite allergy.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms of a dust mite allergy will usually occur promptly after exposure to dust mites, although they can take up to 2 hours in rarer cases. The most common symptoms of a dust mite allergy include sneezing, watery eyes, congestion and a runny nose, tightness of chest and potentially difficulty breathing. Different people will experience differing severities of symptoms, and severity can also differ between reactions.
This allergen can also cause a flare-up of asthma, if you suffer from allergic asthma. an estimated 64% of people living with asthma find that house dust mites trigger their asthma symptoms.
Can allergy testing identify a dust mite allergy?
The good news is allergy testing for dust mites is available. Both our Basic allergy test and complete body test include testing for house dust mites, and many other allergy testing methods are capable of testing for this allergen.
How do I minimise these symptoms?
There’s no way to guarantee complete avoidance of dust mites, but you can minimise your chances of an allergic reaction through a few basic actions;
- 60-degree washes – to kill off any mites
- Opting for hard wood flooring over carpets
- Regular vacuuming
- Air conditioning or opening windows to allow airflow
- Air filters and purifiers
- Freezing and then washing soft toys
Is a dust mite allergy life-threatening?
As with any allergy, a dust mite allergy has the potential to be life threatening. The most dangerous symptom being anaphylaxis (also known as anaphylactic shock). The good news is that if an allergy is present, there are many medical treatments and lifestyle alterations you can make to minimise your risk of a reaction.
But the first order of business must be allergy testing, to make certain that your symptoms are being caused by an allergy and not another undiagnosed condition.