Bed bugs and dust mites are not creatures you want in your home. Any pest in the home is a total nuisance and can wreak havoc on your health and cause you and your loved ones misery. While bed bugs and dust mites are common pests, they have major differences. Knowing what you’re dealing with empowers you to find the right solution.
So What’s The Difference?
Bed bugs are actually bugs. Their scientific name is Cimex lectularius. They are small, up to 7mm in length, but they are big enough to see them with our own eyes. They have flat and oval bodies that are reddish-brown. Bed bugs can’t fly but they can crawl very long distances.
Dust mites are arachnids. Their scientific name is Dermatophagoides spp. They are microscopic creatures, up to 0.5mm, that you will never be able to see with your naked eye. They are globular in shape and creamy white in colour.
Food for Pests
Bed bugs are parasitic insects that feed on the blood of sleeping humans and animals but these bugs can go for months without feeding while they look for their ideal host.
Dust mites feed on dead skin cells that we and our pets leave behind; and we tend to shed them throughout the day and as we are sleeping – about 0.03g to 0.09g of skin every hour, which is equivalent to about 30,000 to 40,000 old skin cells a day! This amount would not seem much to us, but that’s plenty of food for these pests.
Where do they live?
You will find both bed bugs and dust mites in beds but they inhabit them very differently.
Bed bugs hide in crevices close to the bed and also in other parts of the bedroom such as in curtains, behind headboards or under bedside tables.
Dust mites prefer dark and moist environments like pillows and mattresses where they enjoy a constant food source. Yes, that is from the skin we are feeding them with.
How do they affect your health?
Bed bugs are one of the few parasites that do not transmit disease. While it will not make you ill, many people are allergic to the bites of bed bugs. The bite sites can get inflamed and itchy.
Dust mites are not parasites and are not able to bite us, however they excrement can cause allergic reactions like rhinitis, asthma and eczema.
How do I get rid of them?
The best bet for keeping both pests at bay is lots of cleaning! While you can completely eliminate bed bugs with pest control solutions, dust mites are pests that can’t be totally eliminated but can be significantly reduced.
You can frequently vacuum your furniture and wash bedsheets and blankets weekly in hot water.
We also have an anti-dust mite treatment that is safe for fabric, humans and pets. Potema Mattress-Clean Spray has proven to effectively reduce dust mite growth by 90% and can last for up to 4 to 6 months.