How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try Out

We cover the common signs of dust mites and the most effective ways to get rid of them.
Phyllis McMahon
Phyllis McMahon
Research Writer
Phyllis teaches English Literature at a local college and loves writing in her free time. She’s also a great cook – her British beef Wellington is something the best res read more
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Chas Kempf
Chas Kempf
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Chas works in a professional pest control company and knows all the nuances of this job. Also, he’s a fantastic tennis player and loves to organize BBQ parties for his fam read more
Last updated: August 16, 2023
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Dust mites. Nasty little critters, they are. While it’s not exactly the most pleasant thing you can think of, there’s a pretty good chance that your living room couch is hosting a colony of dust mites, especially if it’s already seen a few years of wear and tear. So, how to get rid of dust mites in the couch?

Feeding off of a steady supply of dead skin cells, sweat, dirt, and other debris found in carpets, blankets, pillows, curtains, upholstery, and, you guessed it, couches, dust mites are a real nuisance. And if you’ve ever seen what one looks like in close-up (they’re microscopic), the couch may not look so inviting anymore. They look like transparent lice, and the idea of sharing your living space with thousands of these critters is not a good sight.

The problem is? It’s more common than you think, especially if you live in a very humid area. And even worse, it’s impossible to see them with just your eyes. But when your allergies start acting up all of a sudden, then you know they’re there.

Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to control them, all while keeping your living spaces clean for you and your whole family. And to help you get ahead of these microscopic pests, this article will go over everything you need to know about dust mites, from common signs, where they come from, how to get rid of them, and everything in between.

What Are Dust Mites?

First off, let’s start by asking, “what exactly is a dust mite Trusted Source House dust mite - Wikipedia ?” Well, based on their name alone, dust mites are microscopic insect-like creatures that are no bigger than a single speck of dust. Looking like a cross between a lice and a bedbug, these microscopic arthropods commonly live in household dust, and feed off of dead skin cells and sweat build-up.

Favoring hot and humid climates, these creatures are one of the most common causes of allergies Trusted Source Dust mite allergy - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic , and are even known to trigger asthma. Not only that, but they also leave behind skin and fecal matter that can also trigger allergies. Unfortunately, dust mites also love snacking on dead skin cells, which is primarily the reason why they are so prevalent in the homes of people.

When this happens, it can be a big problem, especially for people that experience severe allergy symptoms. So, what can you do about them?

Common Signs of Dust Mites

You may not have noticed it, but you could already be living with dust mites. In particular, dust mites thrive in places that are either dusty, warm, or humid, so any house with space like this can already have dust mites without you knowing. Furthermore, because they are so microscopic, it’s not possible to completely get rid of dust mites from your home.How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try Out

That being said, there are common signs that can tell you whether your home has dust mites or not. This includes:

  • Constant and bad coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Drip in your nose
  • Itchiness around the eye area
  • Blue skin under your eyes
  • Facial pressure and pain
  • Watery eyes
  • Nasal congestion
  • Itchy throat and mouth

These are the basic symptoms that reveals you have been exposed to dust mites, and your body is appropriately reacting to it. If you or a family member is experiencing this and there seems to be no other triggers in the house, then it’s most likely dust mites, and you are to take immediate action.

Can Dust Mites Live on a Couch?

How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try OutCan dust mites also live on your couch? Unfortunately, yes. In fact, it’s one of the most common places in your house where you can find them, since couches get so much dead skin cells and sweat due to everyday use.

And then there are the signs. The first tell-tale sign, of course, is when you start getting allergic reactions the moment you sit on your couch. Now, note that there could be other reasons behind this, especially if you live with a pet. However, it should already be enough to make you suspicious, especially if you feel like something is crawling on your skin.

However, why are there dust mites on your couch in the first place? Well, it’s for a whole variety of reasons, given that couches are one of the most used furniture on daily basis. Common reasons include:

  • Moisture – Because dust mites are living creatures, they love moisture, and actually absorb moisture from their environment through glands located on their front legs. This means that if your couch gets riddled with sweat because of constant use, there’s a pretty big chance that thousands of dust mites are living there.
  • Pet poop and pee – If you live with a pet that’s allowed to get up on the couch, then that’s another factor for having dust mites on it. As microscopic creatures, dust mites feed off of organic matter, and they particularly enjoy munching on pet poop particles. This means that if your pet left you a smelly surprise in the past, a bunch of microscopic creatures might have already gotten to it first before you were able to clean it up.
  • Skin and hair particles – Of course, dust mites also love feeding on dead skin cells and hair, and those are things commonly found in the couch. This is why constantly vacuuming your furniture is very important.
  • Actual dust – There’s a reason why dust mites are called the way they are, and it’s because they like living in actual dust. So if your house has areas that are particularly dusty, then chances are, there are already dust mites living there.

8 Ways to Get Rid of Dust Mites

So, how can you actually get rid of your unruly microscopic couch mates that’s causing your allergies? Here are tried-and-tested methods you can do:

1. Regularly Vacuum with a HEPA Filter

How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try OutUnfortunately, your regular vacuum cleaner won’t do the trick, as it’s not powerful enough to catch the tiny dust mites on your couch. Instead, opt for using a vacuum with a HEPA filter. Often, these devices have powerful suctions that are strong enough to catch dust mites and their eggs. And while you’re at it, make sure you do this every other day not just on the couch but on the whole house. Take note of those hard-to-reach places too.

2. Wash Couch Covers

If you regularly use your couch, then it’s imperative that its cover should be taken out to get cleaned. Ideally, you should this every couple of weeks, as it ensures your couch doesn’t get dead skin cell and sweat build-up. While washing, we also recommend setting the hot water to about 130 degrees F to kill off dust mites, larvae, and any other germs residing in your covers.

3. Let Your Couch Covers to Dry Out in the Sun

After washing, it’s a good idea to take these covers and cushions outdoors so they can dry in the sun. This helps remove any moisture and dampness that dust mites may find attractive. It will also stop your covers from smelling bad, so make sure of natural sunlight and dry them outside. Even on days with no sun, airing them outside is still recommended.

4. Steam Clean Regularly

How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try OutAside from vacuuming and washing, you can also do a significant difference by constantly using a steam cleaner to help kill off dust mites and microbes. Additionally, steam cleaning is also ideal for couches with non-removable covers. When you can, make sure you also spend time steam-cleaning other fabric and upholstery in your house, like clothes, carpets, bed sheets, pillows and the like.

As for what steam cleaner to get, there are plenty of affordable ones on the market. One great example is the Eave Handheld Steam Cleaner, which is a powerful multi-use unit that’s well-reviewed by customers and users alike. It’s also quite portable, and comes with useful accessories that can be very useful.

5. Control Your Home’s Humidity Level

If your home has a thermostat, then now’s a good idea to drop down that temperature to keep down humidity levels at only 50%. This should help control dust mite population in your home. If it’s not possible however, then another solution is to use a dehumidifier, which you can find in most stores. The right one will quickly drain any excessive moisture lingering around in your home while maintaining humidity at a comfortable level. This way, your home remains comfortable while making it non-ideal for microbes to live in.

6. Use Tea Tree Oil or Eucalyptus Oil Spray

How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try OutA lot of us don’t always have time to vacuum or steam our furniture. If this is the case for you, then one solution you can do is to use tea tree oil or eucalyptus oil to kill the dust mites in your couch. A small spray should work just fine.

And if you’re wondering what spray to get, the EuroSpa Aromatics Pure Eucalyptus Oil ShowerMist and Steam Room Spray come with glowing reviews and natural ingredients to help solve your problem. Additionally, you can also try using dust mite sprays as a solution.

7. Use an Air Purifier Near Your Couch

You can also try using a dust air purifier (ideally, with a HEPA filter) near your couch. These devices are particularly effective at catching dust mites that are airborne Trusted Source Can air purifiers get rid of dust mites? | Blueair Can air purifiers get rid of dust mites and clean air? Learn about air purifiers for dust and how air purifiers get rid of airborne dust mites and other allergens. Blueair , all while letting you breathe easier during the day. Of course, cleaning your unit is key to making sure it lasts you a long time.

8. Use Baking Soda and Febreze

How to Get Rid of Dust Mites in Your Couch? 8 Methods to Try OutDoes baking soda kill dust mites? Does Febreze kill dust mites? Turns out, they can, and they’re particularly effective at doing so. For baking soda, all you need to do is to put some in affected areas and leaving for a few minutes before vacuuming it. Febreze, on the other hand, can simply be sprayed on areas where dust mites most likely live.

Tips on Preventing Dust Mites in the Future

Now that you know how to kill the dust mites in your couch, here are additional tips that should help prevent them from coming back in the future:

  • Never leave your couch dirty – this should go without saying, but routinely keeping your couch clean is important in making sure it’s dust-mite-free.
  • Don’t let pets on the couch – Unfortunately, the pets will have to stay on the floor from now on, as this can also help significantly lower the chances of dust mites in the future.
  • Avoid putting other things on the couch – Lastly, avoid putting other things on your couch. Not only is this a mess, but you always risk transporting dust mites from one place to the next, so avoid this by keeping your couch mess-free all the time.

Final Thoughts

Because they’re so small and microscopic, it’s often hard to tell whether you have dust mites in your couch, and it’s even harder to tell how long they’ve already been living there.

Luckily, you now know how to get rid of dust mites in your sofa, so use these tips to ensure your home stays clean, comfortable, and free from nasty little household pests.


House dust mite - Wikipedia
Dust mite allergy - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic
Can air purifiers get rid of dust mites? | Blueair
Can air purifiers get rid of dust mites and clean air? Learn about air purifiers for dust and how air purifiers get rid of airborne dust mites and other allergens. Blueair
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