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Mum taking action to beat dust mite problem.

Byline: Anne-Marie Bradley ,

Test Gayle Cascarino, 34, with a self-testing kit which helped her identify a dust mite allergy

Self-help prevents causes of allergy

A HOLME VALLEY woman is fighting dust mites in her home after discovering the cause of her allergy.

Gayle Cascarino, 34, has taken up damp dusting and introduced anti-allergy bedding in a bid to combat cold-like symptoms.

The mother-of-one started suffering a blocked nose and lost her senses of taste and smell more than a year ago.

Now, thanks to a self-help kit she has found the root of her problem.

Gayle, of Sike Close, Totties, Scholes, said: "It was awful. I sounded like I was full of cold all the time.

"My nose was constantly blocked and I couldn't taste food properly.

"I couldn't even smell if my baby had a dirty nappy and if people were coming for dinner I couldn't taste what I was cooking.

"It was a real problem."

After months of taking decongestants, Gayle visited her GP, who prescribed a steroid nasal spray.

She said: "After about three weeks it wasn't doing anything, so I went back to the decongestants."

Weeks later she spotted an allergy testing kit in the supermarket and decided to give it a try.

Gayle said: "I am asthmatic, but had tested negative to allergies in my teens.

"But you can develop allergies later in life, so I decided to give it a go."

The pin-prick blood test showed Gayle had allergy antibodies in her blood.

She said: "The next step was finding out what my allergy was.

"As I don't have pets or food allergies I opted to test for the dust mite allergy. The result was positive."

Gayle has now installed anti-dust mite filters on her vac and fitted an anti-allergy mattress and pillow protectors.

She said: "Every house has dust mites, but there are things you can do to prevent it."

Dusting with a damp cloth has also helped ease her allergy.

She said: "My symptoms have definitely improved.

"I don't have to take daily decongestants any more and my smell and taste are back."

She urged people suffering allergies to seek help. She said: "You need to look around for self-help, because medication is not always going to do the trick."
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Title Annotation:Health
Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:May 24, 2005
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