Spring Cleaning Tips to Alleviate Allergies
When spring rolls around the allergies are hitting hard. Many people don’t know that their allergies can be worse because of the allergens lurking in their home, too. However, the good news is those allergens can be removed. Spruce up your home with spring cleaning to help your allergy symptoms.
#1 Know Your Triggers:
The first task is figuring out which allergens in your home could be triggering symptoms for your family. There is a different response for outdoor allergens like pollen and grass then say indoor allergens like dust, mold, and pet hair. For example, you could respond to the outdoor allergens by closing your windows tight to keep them out. For the indoor triggers, you would want to air out your house by opening your windows wide.
If you’re unsure of what is causing your allergies, here are some of the most common triggers to investigate:
- Cat and dog dander
- Tree, grass, and weed pollen
- Dust mites
- Mold spores
#2 Change HVAC Filters Regularly
Change your filter every 6-12 months, or closer to every 90 days if your allergies are severe. Also be sure to set your MERV rating correctly. Most homes use filters rated between 7-12. A higher MERV rating is not always better. A rating that’s too high reduces airflow, which can actually make things worse. Do some research on your system to find the highest rating that still allows maximum airflow.
#3 Eliminate Standing Water Sources
Mold grows especially fast in standing water. If your allergy trigger is mold it is smart to look for and stop any places with standing water. Additionally, fixing any leaks around the house will help alleviate your mold allergies.
#4 Wash or Replace Moldy Shower Curtains
Another way to stop the symptoms from flaring up with mold allergies is to replace or wash your shower curtains. Mold from your shower curtains can spread to other areas in your home during the summer months. Most shower curtains allow you to simply throw it in the washing machine and hang it back up to dry. Another good trick to prevent mold growth in the future is to decrease the humidity in your bathroom by opening a window, turning on the fan, or allowing the moisture to escape somehow.
#5 Trap Dust, Don’t Move It Around
When you are dusting your home don’t use feather dusters. They are more likely to push the dust into the air where you will breathe it in. To dust, a slightly wet cloth or towel will trap the dust inside so your cleaning is more effective. Dust is eliminated when it is trapped, instead of just thrown into the air to land somewhere else.
#6 Remove Trapped Allergens
Carpet, rugs, and upholstered furniture act as air filters for your home that should be vacuumed weekly and ideally need to be professionally cleaned every 3-4 months. If it’s been a little while since you’ve had your carpets and furniture cleaned, call in the experts to handle them for you.
#7 Clear Dust from All Surfaces
People forget to dust window frames, door frames, window sills, and ceiling fans all the time. Don’t let dust build up in your home!
#8 Keep the House Cool and Dry
To help you home with dust mites and spores, try to keep the house at 50% relative humidity or lower.
#9 Wash and Air out Bed Linens Regularly
Professionals recommend cleaning your bedding every 1-2 weeks. The skin cells, dust, and hair that our sheets collect along with dust mites needs to be cleaned. If your allergies continue to be worse during the night, you may consider having your mattress and pillows cleaned.
#10 Avoid Strong or Scented Chemicals
When you use strong chemicals to clean you can make your allergy symptoms worse. By using natural cleaners like baking soda and vinegar you can clean your home without making your symptoms flare up.