Dust Mites And Disruptive Sleep: What Can You Do To Rest Easy At Night?
If you've spent the past month or so coughing, sneezing and sniffling every night, you may think that you have the common cold. Although the common cold can produce the symptoms like yours, it generally doesn't last longer than 10 days before going away. In addition, the common cold can produce other symptoms you might not have right now, including a low-grade fever and chills. Therefore, you may actually be suffering from symptoms of an allergy to dust mites. Dust mite allergies can worsen at night, which keeps you from getting the restful sleep your body needs to be healthy. Here's how dust mite allergies disrupt your sleep, what the treatments for the allergies and what you can do to sleep better at night.
How Do Dust Mite Allergies Develop?
One of the biggest problems with dust mites is that you can't see them. But the pests actually breed, hide and live in your home's dust. Household dust consists of numerous things, including dead insect parts, dirt, pet dander, and even the dead skin cells of humans. It's your dead skin cells that attract and feed dust mites, especially in your bedroom.
Because you shed a host of dead skin cells a day, your bedding, mattresses and pillows to can harbor millions of dust mites. As they feed, dust mites leave behind feces and tiny pieces of shedded skin. These things are the reasons for your strange, ongoing allergy symptoms.
Dust mite feces contain proteins or enzymes that aggravate your respiratory system when you inhale them. To get rid of the invaders, your immune system goes on the attack by creating various responses or symptoms that range from coughing and nasal congestion to asthma. Seeking help from an allergy specialist or doctor may be one of the best ways to beat your problems.
How Are Dust Mite Allergies Diagnosed and Treated?
Before a doctor or allergist treats your symptoms, they must be sure that you have allergies to dust mites and not something else, such as mold or pollen. A specialist may do this by performing an allergy skin test on your arm. The test may require injecting a small amount of dust mite protein or extract in your skin and monitoring the site for an reaction. If you have a dust mite allergy, your skin will turn red and itch.
Treatment for your allergies may include using nasal sprays that contain fluticasone. Fluticasone comes in liquid spray form and is a type of steroid used to relieve your symptoms over time. The medication comes in different doses, depending on the type of allergies you have. Most people only need to spray the medication in each nostril once a day to feel better. Your doctor or allergist will determine how much nasal spray you need by monitoring how your allergies respond to each dose over time.
There are some common side effects of using fluticasone nasal spray. These include dryness in the nasal passages, nausea and dizziness. Some people may experience severe reactions to using steroids, such as swelling in the face and problems swallowing. If you encounter any type of reaction, contact your doctor or allergist immediately for further instructions. Keep in mind that not all people experience bad reactions to steroid-based nasal sprays.
It's also a good idea that you take additional steps to protect your health from dust mites. You might want to wash your bed linens and other items weekly in hot water to reduce the dust in your bedroom. If possible, air out your mattresses or have them steam cleaned to reduce the dust mites living on and inside them. You may also wish to vacuum and clean other living quarters in your house to lower your dust mite population.
For more information on treating dust mite allergies, contact a specialist today about allergy testing or nasal sprays, like Dymista.