Allergies to dust mites is a common problem that my patients encounter. Exposure to these triggers in sensitive patients cause symptoms of nasal congestion, runny nose, and itchiness. Many of my patients with dust mite allergies also have chronic sinus problems and nasal obstruction. Dust mite allergies are usually diagnosed by an allergy skin or blood test. Treatment is first aimed at managing the underlying allergic disorder.
Patients with dust mite allergies are sensitive to the little bugs that live in dust around the house. If you have a sensitivity to dust mites, it is important to first reduce your exposure to dust by taking certain precautions at home. Some tips to reduce your exposure include:
Frequent deep cleaning, dusting and decluttering
Removing carpeting and replacing with hardwood or tile flooring
Replacing draperies and curtains with blinds
Applying pillowcase and mattress covers
Frequent cleaning of bedding on high heat
A dehumidifier often helps as dust mites like to live in humid environments.
A HEPA air filtration system to clean the air
Medical treatment of dust mite allergies include topical and systemic antihistamines and other allergy medications, topical steroids, a leukotriene modifier, and nasal saline irrigations. Sublingual immunotherapy (such as Odactra) or traditional allergy shots are also an option.
For my patients that have continued nasal obstructive or sinus symptoms despite the above medical treatments, I sometimes consider in-office procedures such as turbinate reductions, or sinus surgery. While this does not address the underlying allergies, it may provide symptom relief.
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