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Are you sleeping alone? No one and I mean absolutely no one sleeps alone. We share our beds with millions of dust mites who feed off our dead skin cells shed nightly as we toss and turn in our rejuvenating sleep.

What do all households share in common? The dust that seems to come from nowhere every day and doesn't go away. No matter how hard you vacuum now, this very day itself will see an accumulation of dust as soon as you put the vacuum away.

Do you wake up to runny noses and watery eyes? It's time to stop blaming it on the cold morning temperatures and read on.  You may be a victim of dust- related allergies.

Invisible to human vision, dust mites are hiding in almost every surface of your home. They look gruesome under the microscope and its horrifying to think that you could be breathing those up your nose. Normally harmless, it is their waste products (or allergens) which cause adverse reactions in people who are susceptible to the allergens. Thus, the symptoms of runny nose and eyes are manifested in people allergic to these allergens.

Sad to say, it's virtually impossible to totally eliminate dust mites. If you can't beat them, at least you can give them a good thrashing and try to beat back their population.

Good housekeeping habits are insufficient to combat the army of dust mites invading your sanctuary. Extra precautions are necessary to maintain a healthy home. After all, good health is also accumulated wealth. Think about all those medical expenses saved.

The welcome mat and its residents greet you. Do away with carpets, throw rugs and other soft furnishings. If you must have them, then launder them often. Set aside a budget for dry cleaning those items which are not machine washable.

If you have infants or young kids, hold back on the soft toys. These are dangerous breeding grounds for dust mites. Children may develop allergies when exposed continually to the allergens. This may lead to respiratory tract illnesses like asthma or runny nose. Kids then grow up to become life long sufferers of dust related allergies.

For the chronically affected by dust mites, I suggest substituting venetian blinds for curtains. Don't forget to vacuum these regularly on both sides.

It's time for mite-buster! Use a high powered vacuum cleaner with enough suction to remove those stubborn parasites. It doesn't pay to scrimp on this household item. You might as well get a job well done for the same amount of energy than use a cheaper model and leave half the dust mites lying around to multiply further so that you'll have more to vacuum the next round.

Have horse, will travel. In this case, have clothes-horse, will travel farther. You'll be picking up hitch-hikers unknowingly when you expose your fabric jackets or other clothing by hanging them in the atmospherically rich dust mites. It's bad enough that dust mites are airborne without humans also acting as carriers for them.

Drinks are on the house. Don't put an aquarium or other source of water in your bedroom. Let the fish sleep alone. Dust mites thrive on absorbed moisture form the surroundings. They'll be too drunk with glee to thank you.

Avoid displaying mementos and their likes on open shelves. Other than giving the dust mites opportunities to eavesdrop on your conversations, they serve as receptacles for collecting dust and become farming houses for dust mites to proliferate.

Reduce the amount of fabric furnishings in your home.

Hose down your bed with an anti-mite spray. They're available at the pharmacy. You'll sleep better resting on them than sleeping with them alive.

Use hot water for your laundry. Boiled mites never felt so good after a wash.

Lastly, even if you live with bare walls and skeletal furnishings, dust mites will always find a home within your home. You can only fight to reduce their advancing armies. If there's any consolation, you don't need to be a general to win this war!