It’s getting a bit warmer and you may find that you, or others in your family, are sniffling, sneezing and coughing a little more than usual. Unfortunately, while it’s beautiful and refreshing, springtime is also synonymous with something a little less pleasant . . . allergies. Tree pollen is the most common seasonal allergy but mold spores and dust mites are also prevalent during this time of year. Depending on the day and your tolerance for them, the side effects of these contaminants can cause quite a bit of discomfort and can even become debilitating. While there may not be a definite cure for all of them, there are some quick and easy preventative measures you can take right in your very own home to minimize the negative effects of these bothersome seasonal allergens.
Start the season off right with a good spring cleaning; here’s where to start:
- Dust thoroughly with a damp cloth
- Vacuum and mop the floors
- Wash all bedding and fabric-covered surfaces, including pillows, stuffed animals and furniture
- Sanitize around sinks and toilets, double-checking for leaks.
Take off Your Shoes
Shoes that have been worn outside can track all kinds of unwanted allergens into your home. Consider putting a shoe rack next to your front door and encourage friends and family to remove their shoes when they enter your house.
Close the Windows
It may be tempting to open your windows up as soon as the weather gets warm but be aware that by doing so, you’re inviting pollen and other contaminants into your home along with that fresh air. Especially on days with a high pollen count, opt for using the air conditioner instead.
Clean Your Air Ducts
Allergens, mold and other harmful toxins can easily find ways into HVAC ductwork, and ultimately into the air you breathe, so it’s important to keep all ducts clean and maintained year-round. Schedule a professional cleaning and consider Aeroseal, a specialized duct sealing process that can not only reduce your energy bills, but can drastically increase your home’s air quality.
Get Rid of Insects and Pests
Make sure to regularly search for and discard of dead bugs found in and around the perimeter of your home, especially those hiding in light fixtures or porch lights. As they decompose, dead insects become a powerful and very unhealthy allergen source.
Adjust the Humidity
If the humidity in your home gets too high, it can create a warm, musty and damp environment – in other words, a breeding ground for mold and dust mites. Consider using a dehumidifier to keep humidity levels under control.
Keep up With HVAC Maintenance
Keeping up with HVAC maintenance will ensure that the air you are breathing in your home is as clean and healthy as it can be. During maintenance appointments, a technician will clean the equipment, replace filters as needed, test carbon monoxide levels and check for other unsafe toxins.
Use a Synthetic Doormat and Clean it Regularly
Place a doormat in front of each entrance to your home. Doormats made of natural materials can get dirty easily and house harmful allergens, so stick to using ones that are synthetic, anti-microbial and easily machine-washable.
Do you suffer from springtime allergies? How do you aim to prevent them in your home? Share with us in the comments section below!