Ah, spring. The earth renewing itself. The smells of new-mown grass and flowers. The beginning of allergy season. If you are one of more than 18 million adults with indoor/outdoor allergies, spring also signals the time to stock up on allergy medicine and tissues or get an allergy shot from the doctor.
Controlling Your Environment
You may not be able to do much about it at work, but there are several ways you can reduce allergens in your home, the place you spend most of your time. The first step is to remove allergens already in the house such as mold, dust mites, and pet dander. Nobody wants to get rid of their pets, so here are some ideas to manage symptoms caused by these three sources.
Dark and damp conditions encourage mold. That’s why you’re likely to find it first in the bathroom. It can also lurk behind refrigerators and in damp basements. Help prevent mold by:
Cleaning potential mold areas above regularly.
Removing damp clothes from the washer promptly.
Cleaning showers and bathroom tiles with mold-killing solutions.
Maintaining a humidity level below 50 degrees.
Dust collects everywhere and on everything, so it’s important to dust and vacuum often. You should also:
Limit throw rugs, which collect dust, or wash them regularly.
Go with hardwood floors instead of carpet. If that’s not an option, get low-pile carpeting.
Use cheesecloth over air vents to help capture any stray allergens.
Wash bedding often in hot water.
If you’re an animal lover, you’re probably willing to put up with a lot to keep them. Consider these suggestions as well:
Get help from someone to bathe and groom them regularly.
Wipe their coats down when they come indoors to remove any allergens on their fur.
Wash their bedding often.
Your Biggest Ally is Your HVAC System
Your HVAC system is a critical component in helping to eliminate allergens. Air filters clean air on its way into your house while also working inside the home to block dust, mold and pet dander from moving through the system. A good practice is to replace air filters once a month, even more often during allergy season. If you find standard filters inadequate, look for those with a higher efficiency rate that fine-sift air particles.
Clean Air Ducts
Have your air ducts cleaned at least once a year. Dust, pollen, rodent droppings and other allergens can build up inside the HVAC system too. Give air ducts a good cleaning if you haven’t done it in a while, then maintain regular cleanings. You might find an increased energy efficiency with cleaner air ducts too. Find a reputable local service such as Bobs heat and ac to help.
Use Your HVAC System Often
Think twice before you turn off the system during milder months. The HVAC system removes allergens and its regular use helps prevent mold growth. Fans only push the air around. Your system is a great weapon in your fight to reduce allergens in the home and make life a little easier. Keep your system in top shape by scheduling regular maintenance with a professional HVAC service.