How to Safeguard Your Home Against Allergy Season
10 Tips for Keeping Springtime Allergies at Bay
For most people, spring is always a welcome sight after a long, cold winter. But for many people, the thought of spring only brings on feelings of anxiety because they know that when the weather starts warming up, allergy season swings into high gear.
If you or someone in your family suffers from springtime allergies, there are some things you can do to help safeguard your home against the airborne allergens and pollutants that cause those allergic reactions. Here are ten simple tips that can have a big impact on the quality of your indoor air this spring.
#1: Upgrade Your Vacuum
If you have an allergy sufferer in your home and you’re using an older vacuum, then it’s probably time for an upgrade. There’s a good chance that your vacuum is adding to the airborne pollutants in your home, instead of trapping them.
Don’t take it personally; this happens naturally over time with just about every vacuum out there on the market. When you go to buy your new vacuum, be sure to choose one with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. This type of filter is most effective when it comes to trapping airborne allergens.
#2: Dust Thoroughly Once a Week
Dust is the ultimate enemy of allergy sufferers, so it’s important to dust most surfaces throughout the home on a daily basis. But, you should also do a thorough dusting of the entire home at least once a week. During this time, you should make sure you dust everywhere dust might collect, especially in the nooks and corners that you usually pass by during your daily dusting.
#3: Replace the Air Filter on Your HVAC System
The air filter on your HVAC system is your number one ally in your fight against allergy season. But, when the air filter becomes clogged, its ability to capture allergens is reduced. Not only that, but a clogged air filter can also cause your HVAC system to malfunction sooner than expected.
So, after a long winter, you should replace the air filter with a brand new one, making your system ready for spring’s allergen explosion. After that, the filter should be replaced every three months, or sooner if you have pets or very serious allergies.
#4: Keep the Windows Closed
After a long, cold winter, it might be tempting to open the windows to let in the warm spring air. But if you have allergies, this is the last thing you want to do because open windows allow allergens and dust inside. During allergy season, you will be better served by keeping your windows closed, and using your central air to keep your home cool.
#5: Keep Your Shoes at the Door
One of the most surprising ways that allergens get into the home is via your shoes. Shoes collect all manner of allergens and pollutants outside, so if you have allergies, you will want to leave your shoes at the door when you enter your home. This will help prevent the allergens from spreading throughout the home.
#6: Install Low Pile Carpet
If you have a soft, plush, high pile carpet, then odds are it is not helping with your allergies. Replacing it with a low pile carpet is recommended because the lower your carpet is, the easier it will be for your vacuum to suck up dust mites and dander. Or, replace your carpets with hard flooring and use low pile rugs for an even better anti-allergen solution.
#7: Use a Dehumidifier
Allergens like mold flourish in warm, moist air. So, using a dehumidifier will remove the moisture from the air, thus reducing mold growth throughout the home.
#8: Wash Your Bedding Often
Serious allergy sufferers should change their bedding often. When washing bed linens, they should be washed in 130-degree water, ensuring that all of the dust mites are killed. Using an allergy relief mattress and pillow covers will also help make your bed more comfortable.
#9: Keep Your Home Free of Cockroaches
Cockroaches are terrible pests to have around if you have allergies, so you need to do everything you can to keep them out. This includes keeping your home as clean as possible. Additionally, your trash should be taken out frequently, and your trash cans should be placed away from the home’s structure.
If you already have a cockroach infestation, eliminate them using a non-chemical poison so your allergies won’t be affected, or call an exterminator and explain your allergies to them before they treat your home so they can use the best treatment option for your specific case.
#10: Inspect Your Plumbing for Leaks
Because mold grows in damp areas, you will want to make sure that you don’t have any plumbing leaks in your home. Check all of your plumbing for signs of leaks, and repair the ones you find. If you find signs of mold, you will also need to safely remediate the mold so it doesn’t continue to spread.
Allergy season isn’t easy, but these ten tips will certainly help make it easier to manage. Keep it up — you only have four months of serious allergens to worry about. Before long, you’ll be in the heat of summer and your seasonal allergy woes will be behind you!
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