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Thread: How do you combat demodex in your environment? Is it helpful to even do that?

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    Default How do you combat demodex in your environment? Is it helpful to even do that?

    I have read voraciously the past 2 days since my re-diagnosis with demodex. I am currently on a regimen of topicals both prescription and OTC. I am concerned about my environment and am wondering if anyone has done anything to address the concern in their home. For example, I read that a product for sale on Amazon.com can kill environmental mites and help to prevent infestation. This product is an enzyme, natural, not chemcial (not a pesticide) and claims to break down the exoskeleton of the adult mite. What I am reading says the mite life cycle is about 3-4 weeks. I am assuming it will take this long at least to eradicate the little monsters. At first this seemed like a great idea, so I ordered 2 bottles. Now, upon second thought, I am thinking you can't completely rid your environment of these things because they are a natural part of the environment and it's my immune system that is failing. I have read derm journals and clinical trial results claiming most of the participants were immunodeficient, some with HIV, Lupus, or other autoimmune condition, sero levels of most participants showing decreased lymphs and increased levels of IgM antibodies. I am wondering if anyone has been told by a GP, Dermatologist, Nutritionist, informed friend that there is an immune problem happening and that has led to both the overreaction to the mites and the inability to keep the colony numbers low enough to be asymptomatic.

    As a precautionary measure, I have ordered mattress/box spring casings, new bed pillows and linens, and, as mentioned early, purchased the environmental cleaner. I have read that it may be necessary to either freeze for a period of days or completely disguard all makeup that touched your face and even sanitize with bleach and boiling water any nail utinsels/tools used because the mites are spread from place to place when you scratch and the mites congregate under the nail. Is this overkill or am I leaving anything out?

    Lastly, these critters are nocturnal, they are active at night, and I can literally feel these things having a circus on my face when it starts getting late at night. Does anyone else experience this?

    Thanks so much for your help!

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    Senior Member Brady Barrows's Avatar
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    You should know that demodex mites are on all persons, in the carpet, furniture upholstery, and just about anywhere human skin is shredded off our bodies. Most people have no problems with these critters who serve some sort of symbiotic purpose, probably just to consume dead skin. No one has completely understood what purpose they serve, but it is quite obvious they feed on sebum and dead skin. They are on pets and other animals as well. For some unknown reason, in demodectic rosacea, there is usually a high density count greater than on the general population. Eliminating the demodex population completely in your environment may or may not help. What may be a better approach is to simply reduce the population of the demodex rather than total elimination since they will come back anyway. However, you will never know unless you try so if you can afford to eradicate the mites in your environment and discover that your rosacea improves you will no doubt be one happy camper. But the buggers will return in time. It is a costly approach if you keep replacing your bed, bedding, furniture and carpet.
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    ... aren't you confusing dust mites with demodex mites? they're not the same family of mite -
    and my understanding is that demodex live in our skin, not in the environment.

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    Dora,

    I may be confusing the two, but I was under the assumption that if they are on me, they are also present in my environment. From what I am reading, you do not want to eradicate them completely because they do good things as part of the natural life cycle of flora around us. But, I am not convinced that making an effort to decrease the optimal living environment for them is fruitless. I also read that for transmission from one host to another, it requires direct and steady contact, which leads me to believe they cannot live without a host for very long. I am not sure, so I keep reading. I will keep posting what I find in my research effots.

    Brady,

    It is a costly solution and one that I am not sure is going to make a difference. I will keep my fingers crossed!

    Thanks for your replies!

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    I don't believe demodex serve any purpose. They are parasites. They are the same as fleas, flies, mosquitoes, scabies, locusts, cockroaches: some of nature's dead end mistakes.

    G
    "It's all illusion anyway."

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    Quote Originally Posted by meridiantoo View Post
    I may be confusing the two, but I was under the assumption that if they are on me, they are also present in my environment.
    well ... please triplecheck this before you spend a fortune trying to eliminate them from your surroundings. not everything that lives on/in us can survive in our carpets and mattresses, and from what i've read - which isn't everything, obviously! - my understanding is that demodex can survive only very briefly outside of our facial pores. changing pillowcases regularly should be enough.

    we can easily get re-invaded by them, but that's because everyone around us has them. hugging someone can be enough to get a new set moving in.

    dust mites are a different story. anyone can be/become allergic to them, and if you suspect they're part of what's troubling your skin then doing what you can to get them out of your surroundings is appropriate.

    again, all of the above is my understanding of everything i've read about demodex. it might be wrong. but please triplecheck.

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    Default Demodex cannot live in the environment for very long

    Okay, so I kept reading and found out these guys cannot live outside of the body for a long time, so I am not going to be able to totally eliminate them. I am washing my towels and sheets daily and purchased new head pillows for the bed. I found a product that may help others, but I will make a separate post about it.

    Thanks for the guidance, Dora!

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    I find conflicting information on the Internet. What I recently read is that demodex can persist in the environment a long time, not sure how long, without a host. I am treating my home as if they can.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brady Barrows View Post
    You should know that demodex mites are on all persons, in the carpet, furniture upholstery, and just about anywhere human skin is shredded off our bodies. Most people have no problems with these critters who serve some sort of symbiotic purpose, probably just to consume dead skin. No one has completely understood what purpose they serve, but it is quite obvious they feed on sebum and dead skin. They are on pets and other animals as well. For some unknown reason, in demodectic rosacea, there is usually a high density count greater than on the general population. Eliminating the demodex population completely in your environment may or may not help. What may be a better approach is to simply reduce the population of the demodex rather than total elimination since they will come back anyway. However, you will never know unless you try so if you can afford to eradicate the mites in your environment and discover that your rosacea improves you will no doubt be one happy camper. But the buggers will return in time. It is a costly approach if you keep replacing your bed, bedding, furniture and carpet.
    Brady,

    I missed this post somehow when I was continuing my posts on this thread.

    This is a costly approach....I am better off addressing my body. I have done some things in my environment, though, just in case it helps.

    Thanks!

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    I just replaced my sleeping pillows and I feel all around fresher. I don't know if it's only psychological. But even so, if I feel better -- I feel better!
    "It's all illusion anyway."

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