7 Tips to Help You Reduce Allergies at Home
If you have allergies, you know how difficult it may be to avoid the triggers around you. While you are able to limit your exposure to outdoor triggers, fighting with indoor allergies may be even more challenging. Besides, there are various habits typical for many of us that may also contribute to the development of allergic reactions. In this article, you will find out how to allergy-proof your home and minimize your symptoms by following the tips below.
Keep Your Bathroom Dry and Clean
There are many people who like taking hot, steamy showers, and the steam that is left after the shower often stays in the bathroom, causing the accumulation of mold and dust mites. According to experts, mold usually tends to affect warm and humid environments like bathrooms or basements.
Acquiring an exhaust fan for your bathroom can help to keep the room dry and well-ventilated. If your bathroom is not equipped with a fan, specialists advise at least keeping its door open to allow the airflows to enter.
You can also prevent the mold from growing by scrubbing your bathroom regularly, e.g. once per week. If you notice black “dirt” in your bath or walls, it’s likely been a while since the mold started to grow and it needs to be removed. A bleach solution is one of the best products to fight mold. Remember to wear a mask and gloves when you do the cleaning.
Take Off Your Shoes Indoors
It is a common mistake to wear shoes and socks indoors, since this way you not only bring dirt to your home, but also spread a lot of allergens around. For example, pollen that is present on the ground can easily stick to your shoes and then be transported to your house. Therefore, experts suggest that you take off both the shoes and socks once you get home, on the days when the pollen counts in the air are high.
In case of severe pollen allergy, you may also want to remove your outdoor clothes and take a warm shower. This will help to prevent pollen from spreading around and get the pollen out of your hair, skin and eyes.
Keep Your Pets Out of Your Bed
Pet dander is one of the most common allergy triggers found indoors. If you have an allergy to pets, no matter how much you love your pets, you may need to keep them out of your bedroom or at least out of your bed.
Your pet’s hair contains a lot of dander and pollen, which is transferred to your bed whenever your pet gets onto it. Given that you spent around 8 to 12 hours in your bed, this may dramatically increase the concentration of your exposure to allergens during the day.
If possible, it’s better to keep your pet(s) out of your bedroom during the night.
Keep Your Windows Closed
Many of us regularly open the windows in our house to refresh the air. When the weather is chillier, windows are also a good source of cold air. You may also often enjoy a specific light smell of the plants typical for a current season of the year that is brought by the air coming through the windows. However, for people with allergies, it is not an option.
The allergens that manage to enter your house are very difficult to remove. Therefore, to prevent the triggers from the outside from getting into your home, you will need to keep your windows closed, especially during the boom of seasonal allergies. This should protect your house from the allergens like pollen, mold, smoke, smog and others.
Instead of opening the windows, you can use air conditioning more often. Remember that the filters in your central heating or cooling system should be replaced at least once per month, otherwise, they will not be able to clean your air properly.
Use Vacuums with HEPA Filters
It is important to vacuum your house regularly, about once a week to minimize the amount of allergenic particles, such as dust, dirt, droppings, and others, on the floor or in the air. However, you need to make sure that your vacuum cleaner is equipped with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter. Otherwise, the machine just circulates the particles into the air making you inhale them and worsening your symptoms.
Use Protection When Cleaning
You should wear a mask and gloves whenever you do any kind of cleaning in your house for several reasons. The dust that accumulates on various surfaces may contain dust mites and other triggers of an allergic reaction. The chemicals and fragrances contained in cleaning products may cause irritation in your nose and lungs. Therefore, wearing a mask and gloves, you can reduce your exposure to the allergens.
If your symptoms still do not go away, you can try to replace your cleaning product with a mixture of water and white vinegar, which may help to reduce irritation.
Change Your Bed Sheets Regularly
Your bed is one of the most attractive places for dust mites, since its has everything they need – warmth, darkness and skin cells living on your sheets to feed them. To decrease your exposure to dust mites, it is recommended to change your bedsheets regularly and clean them using hot water and hot dryer.
Many people put extra pillows and stuffed toys on their beds, which also increases the amount of dust mites. If you have an allergy, you should consider removing these things from your bed.
You may also allergy-proof your bed by using 100% cotton sheets, which are friendlier to your skin; covering your mattress and pillows with hypoallergenic cases; and replacing your pillows once in 6-12 months.