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Healthy Homes: Reduce Dust

Step 1: Learn about dust

  • House dust is a mixture of substances that can make asthma symptoms worse such as:

    • Mold spores
    • Pollen
    • Dust mites
    • Pet or rodent allergens
    • Bacteria by-products called endotoxins
  • Endotoxins can make asthma symptoms worse even if your child is not allergic.

  • Soft surfaces in a house such as carpet, curtains, upholstered furniture, and stuffed animals can collect and hold house dust.

  • These soft surfaces can release the house dust into the air when disturbed.


Step 2: Take action

  1. Create a “dust safe” environment in your child’s bedroom.

  2. Make sure all bedding materials are easily washable.

  3. Wash bedding materials (sheets, pillowcases, blankets and bedspreads) at least weekly.

  4. Wash “dust catchers” such as curtains and stuffed animals at least monthly. Eliminate as many of these “dust catchers” as possible from your child’s room.

  5. Dust your child’s bedroom at least twice per week using dust spray and a soft rag.

  6. Vacuum your child’s room twice per week if carpeted – preferably when your child is not at home or is outside. If the room is not carpeted, damp mop twice per week.

  7. Remove carpets – especially in your child’s bedroom. Replace carpets with hard flooring and area rugs that can be put in the washing machine.

  8. Remove upholstered furniture from your child’s bedroom, replacing it with wood, vinyl, or leather furniture. Vacuum remaining upholstered furniture at least weekly.

  9. Make sure you have a high-quality filter installed in your furnace.