Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Mould mites

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QUESTION: Dear Mr Hintz
I have mould mites! I know they are mould mites but I have had them for 1 1/2 years and I can't shift them. They are tiny tiny cream bugs. Barely see able, found on my shoes, clothes, electrics... Everything. I first noticed them on my I pad.
Me and my husband moved into our house two years ago. It's an annexe on the side of my mums house. My dad died and we wanted to be close to my mum. The place was a dump and not lived in for 15 years. Since finding the mites I have lived like a minimilise- got rid of all the unneeded things, got rid if half my clothes, and live out of large storage bags / boxes. I'm a really clean house proud person but still have mites. The house has been treated by a pest specialist , but I still have them .
My problem now is I have a 4 week old, I'm so increasingly worried about them on him. I'm obsessive ! I know it sounds ridiculous but I'm genuinely begining to worry about my emotional state  . I'm in tears all the time.
I don't know where to go from here . We have a dehumidifier and on advice are using chicken mute spray. .

Thank you for reading. I hope you can help .

Lois Pearce

ANSWER: Hi Lois
First of all I question whether or not these are Mold Mites. They sound more like psocids or book lice as mold mites  do not get on clothing as they feed on mold spores. Do you have lot of mold in the house. If so I would be more worried about the effect of the mold on the baby instead of the mites. Unfortunately I cannot be there to inspect the premises or verify what these bugs are. My suggestion is to first  check to see if there is a lot of moldy surfaces, be sure the humidity is low and finally (although as a last resort ) call in a reputable exterminator to examine the situation.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi,

Thank you for your quick response. We had a problem with damp when we first moved in but that seems to have resolved some what. The mites are so so small they can barely be seen, is this the case with psocids?  If so what efforts  can I make to eliminate them. I've read moth balls help ?

Thank you
Lois

Answer
Hello again Lois
 Psocids do not feed on mold but they do thrive in damp conditions so keepin thins dry is important. Psocids feed mainly on paper products. As I stated I am only guessing that these are psocids form your description. Mothballs will not deter them. If you are sure there is no moldy conditions and that things are very dry then the situation should improve. At any rate these bugs do not pose any danger.
 It may be necessary for you to consider an exterminator. I do not know what exterminators are like where youa re but in the US they are ofter not worth the money

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Walter Hintz

Expertise

I can answer any questions about insects and spiders.

Experience

I have taught science for over 57 years. I am presently teaching biology at the college level. I have done extensive graduate work in entomology.

Publications
Momentum Magazine The Ohio Journal of Science

Education/Credentials
B.S. In Ed Kent State Unuv M.Sc The Ohio State Univ National Science Foundation Fellowships: Electron Microscopy Univ of California Entomology Kent State Univ

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