Saturday, April 10, 2010

What is really in Household Dust?

1.  The composition of domestic house dust can vary widely, depending on the living occupants, what chemicals are used in the household, and what the environment outside is like.
2. "However, domestic dust really is made out of "human skin cells, plant pollen, human and animal hairs, textile fibers, paper fibers, minerals from outdoor soil and dust, and many other materials which may be found in the local environment." (Kathleen Hess-Kosa, (2002), Indoor Air Quality: sampling methodologies, page 216. CRC Press.) However, this list is not exclusive as the exact composition can vary widely .
3.  Just some fun facts: nearly 1000 dust particles per square centimeter settle on domestic surfaces every hour (same source as before). Also, some dust consists of human skin; it is estimated that the entire outer layer of skin is shed every day or two at a rate of 7 million skin flakes per minute, which corresponds to a mass emission rate of about 20 mg/minute (Heinsohn, R., Cimbala, J., (2003) Indoor Air Quality Engineering: Environmental Health and Control of Indoor Pollutants. page 146. CRC Press.)  From the same, the average size of a skin flake is about 14 micrometers or microns, with a range of 10-24 micrometers. Remember, any home filter would have to have air pores smaller than this.  A HEPA filtration device is sufficient.
4.  In some studies, over 100 chemicals have been detected in household dust.
5.  The average bed contains about 100,000 dust mites, which eat the skin flakes.  Each dust mite produces about 20 pellets of feces per day.
6.  Human hair averages 80-100 micrometers in diameter.
Had enough?  And you or a loved one is allergic to dust mites?  Then:
1.  Change the pillow case and bed linen once per week.
2.  Wash said items in hot water.
Your Allergy Dude

1 comment:

Katrina Foulkes-Taylor The House Queen Home Decor said...

After changing to Bambury Dust Mite Proof bedding and visiting the natupath our son no longer has symptons related to dust mite allergy. We are extremely thankful as he was extremely bad and we considered giving him three years worth of injections that had no proof of curing him.

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