Keeping Your Home Allergy Free
Regardless of your allergic or asthmatic condition, there are certain fundamental preventative measures you should take to minimize your exposure to allergens and irritants. Maybe it’s time to take steps to make an allergy free home. We are not advocating major changes in your lifestyle or buying expensive air-cleaning devices. First, determine how your symptoms are improving before moving on to more sophisticated measures.
Check off each of the following measures as you address them. Remember, thoroughness is the key to an improved environment. It must be emphasized that the measures listed below are “ruthless” but rational actions that are bound to dramatically improve your environment. Compromise will come into play in a number of decisions. The choice is yours. It is suggested that you make decisions that are practical for you.
13 Ways to Make an Allergy Free Home
1. Pets should not be kept indoors
This is one of the most heart-wrenching dilemmas associated with allergies. If you truly want to make an allergy free home, and if a person is allergic to a cat, dog, or other house pet, avoidance is the answer. Animal dander—particles of hair and skin—remain in carpets, upholstered furniture, and house dust for many months. So, even if you remove the animal from the home, you may still suffer allergy symptoms.
2. Get rid of house plants
Plants may be responsible for the growth of molds, and they can increase the amount of house dust.
3. Allergic individuals should not be present during house cleaning
This is vital to avoid an allergy or asthma attack. If the person must be present, or must carry out the task, an appropriate mask should be worn. Your local pharmacy usually stocks these masks and can advise you what to buy.
4. Avoid “over-stuffed” furniture
If you do own these “offenders,” do not sit on them.
5. Eliminate dust catchers
There are too many to mention. Just remember that all items in your home with surface areas that can attract dust—whether shelves filled with ornaments or books lying on counters—should be removed.
6. The principle to follow: AVOID CLUTTER
Here are some de-cluttering tips to follow when attempting make an allergy free home.
- Closets: Keep them as neat as possible, with everything compartmentalized in boxes, garment bags, and so on. Do not keep what you no longer wear or use.
Hang clothing in zippered garment bags.
Store items like shoes, sweaters, and sportswear in boxes to reduce surface areas that hold dust.
- Clutter: Remove all clutter: books, boxes, wallets,
magazines, papers—anything that is lying around.
- Shelves: Keep shelving to a minimum. Shelves are among the biggest dust catchers.
- Pictures: These also collect dust and should be kept to a minimum.
- Ornaments: More dust catchers. They should be kept in display cases with glass doors.
It’s especially important to follow this principal in your bedroom.
7. Get rid of old carpets
Old carpets create a lot of dust due to breakdown of their fibers. One solution is to remove all carpets and replace them with tiled or wood floors. If you intend to keep your carpets, or they are new, there are ways to keep them clean and relatively allergen free. Professional carpet cleaning can reduce allergens. Or, you can apply solutions that inhibit the formation of airborne dust from carpeting.
8. Remove old drapes
Sorry! No old drapes, and use only washable window curtains made of a smooth material such as cotton, or polyester, or dacron. Venetian blinds are not recommended because of their dust-catching ability. Roll-up window shades are the ideal solution. Shop around. Many stores are oriented to consumer needs and can provide expert guidance.
9. Keep furnaces clean and well looked after
Furnaces should be serviced regularly, the ducts cleaned, and appropriate filters installed on the furnace and the vents.
10. Avoid these household products
Avoid products with strong odors, such as deodorizers, mothballs, and insect repellents.
11. Humidifiers and air conditioners
Humidifiers and air conditioners, while helpful when trying to make an allergy free home, should be cleaned regularly because they are a breeding ground for mold spores.
12. Read Consumer Reports
Stay informed about environmental control measures. There always are new developments.
13. Do not allow smoking in the house
The dangers of tobacco smoke as a cause of respiratory diseases are well known. Passive exposure to tobacco smoke can cause lung disease later in life, especially in children. Tobacco smoke is a powerful irritant that can trigger asthma and/or allergy attacks. If someone in your house smokes and wants to quit, ask your allergist or physician for guidance.
14. Make your bedroom your number 1 priority
You spend about a third of your life sleeping and the vast majority of this time will be spent in your bedroom. It’s therefore so vital to ensure you keep your room an allergy-free sanctuary. We’ve compiled 23 simple ways to eliminate allergens in your bedroom.
Interested in reading more about this topic? Check out some of extremely popular Dr. Guide Books on Allergies, Asthma and Anaphylaxis. Available in print an E-Book format.