House-dust mites are members of the arachnid family — a family that includes spiders, chiggers, and ticks. Like spiders, they have eight legs, but the mites themselves are sightless and completely harmless, since they do not bite, sting, or transmit diseases of any description. Their natural diet consists of shed human skin scales, plant fibers, house dust, fungal spores, pollen grains, and insect scales.
Tag Archive: allergies
Permanent link to this article: http://www.explainstuff.com/2010/07/11/what-are-house-dust-mites-and-how-they-complicate-allergies/
Soon after a new carpet has been installed, house-dust mites will be busy making themselves at home. Microorganisms, such as bacteria and molds, can also thrive in carpeting, which provides them with a warm, moist environment with plenty to eat. Dirt will inevitably be walked into the carpet from outside, depositing traces of soil, pollen, animal dander; animal waste products, pesticide residues, mold spores, and so on. All of these can cause allergies. This is a good reason to adopt a “no-shoes” policy in the home, for guests as well as members of the family.
Permanent link to this article: http://www.explainstuff.com/2010/07/10/carpet-and-allergies/
An adverse immune response is the body’s attempt to kill or expel a foreign protein that has invaded it. From the body’s perspective, therefore, an allergic reaction is a protective mechanism. While immune reactions can occur in response to viruses or bacteria – and, on occasions, inappropriately to the body’s own proteins allergic reactions usually occur in response to external, non-infectious substances.
Permanent link to this article: http://www.explainstuff.com/2010/07/09/what-is-an-allergy-what-causes-allergic-reactions/