House dust mites are microscope bugs that primarily live on dead skin cells regularly shed from humans and their animal pets. Dust mites can cause allergic reactions in asthmatics and others who are allergic to their faces. Skin cells and scales, commonly called dander, are often concentrated in lounging areas, mattresses, used furniture and associated carpeted areas.
A typical house can contain tens of thousands of dust mites. Sick yet? Nearly 100,000 mites can live in one square yard of carpet. Ready to convince your spouse to start bathing regularly? Did you know a single dust mite produces about 20 waste droppings each day, each containing protein which many people are allergic to. Yuck! The proteins in that combination of feces and shed skin are what cause allergic reactions in humans. Depending on the person and exposure, reactions can range from itchy eyes to asthma attacks. Finally, unlike other types of mites, house dust mites are not parasites, since they only eat dead tissue. Gross but true.