According to research detailed at Asthma and Allergy foundation of America, allergies effect 30 percent of adults and 40 percent of children. Unfortunately, no cure exists. Sufferers of this condition must manage their symptoms (sneezing, congestion, red eyes, and headaches).
Most people take over the counter or prescription medication. Yet, for the best results, they need to change their lifestyle. The journey starts at home. Indoor triggers like rodents, cats, dogs, cockroaches, dust mites, mold and pollen contaminate the air.
Reducing or eradicating these factors helps minimize allergic reactions. The process is easy. The key – develop a regimen that attacks allergens, but doesn’t further spread them throughout a space.
1. Embrace wood and eliminate dirt traps.
The material in carpets acts as a dirt trap. So, grime, dander and other particles from traffic get stuck in them. Vacuuming only partially picks up this stuff.
Do yourself a favor and swap out carpets for wood flooring. They require less maintenance and hold onto less matter. If you adore the feel of carpet under your feet, opt for throw rugs.
These design accessories are machine washable, a method that offers a thorough cleansing.
2. Give Fido a taste of the great outdoors.
Did you know that canines need between 30 minutes to two hours of exercise, daily? In Exercising with Your Dog 101, the writer recommends this time span. It’s helpful for more than just fitness.
Dander, skin cells shed from animals, sheds off a dog (or cat). The less he’s in the house, the less dander is too. Therefore, take your animal for a long walk each day and let him go outside.
Fight the desire to turn him into the kind of pet that never sees the light of day – outside.
3. De-clutter. No, really, do it.
Face the truth. You’re never going to use that extra plate set with the funny duck décor given to you by a distant aunt. Also, you haven’t been a size six for more than a decade.
Get rid of the extra stuff that collects dust and makes you wheeze. Donate items to a local charity or a friend who’s admired them for years. Afterward, you will feel better and boost your karma up a notch.
4. Show a common pest the door.
Cockroaches hide in walls. They come out at night. What they leave behind, per WebMD, causes nasal allergies. Signs are congestion, chronic coughing and chest tightness.
Get rid of these pests by putting away right after a meal, mopping up spills on the floor and checking pipes for leaks. These steps encourage cockroaches to find another home. For severe infestations, hire an exterminator. The money you spend pays off with better health.
Related: 15 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Those Nasty Bed Bugs Forever
5. Blow off smoke – in your chimney.
Yes, a stylish chimney adds character to a home. But, this structure, if functional, also taints the air. Ash and soot damages the lungs. Minimize the impact of these home allergens by cleaning your chimney on an annual basis. Consider lighting less fires in your chimney too.
Instead, stay warm through other forms of heat.
6. Spritz away mold with white vinegar.
Water spurs on mold (fungus). Thus, in a house, mold is often found in the kitchen or bathroom. Spritz away this substance with white vinegar.
In The Maids Blog, the writer notates that white vinegar kills 82% of mold. For the remaining, while wearing a mask and gloves, use bleach. Follow-up by checking for leaks and emptying the drip pan in your refrigerator.
7. See more clearly through your windows.
Windows along with their décor collect dust. Make a habit of wiping the blinds with a soft cloth and laundering drapes. Reduce your workload by substituting plastic blinds for wooden ones.
Don’t forget to clean the window panes and seals. Also, buy shorter drapes or decorate with a window topper only. Less is more. Minimal material equates to fewer home allergens.
8. Rest easier with a HEPA air purifier.
Anyone who suffers with allergies understand this conditions worsens at night. This reality makes sleep difficult. The inability to breath well or constant coughs upset the rest cycle.
Tackle this issue head one with a HEPA (High efficiency particulate air filter) air purifier. Place this device near your headrest. This position is the most helpful. Choose the best one by visiting Consumer Reports: Air Purifier Buying Guide.
9. Get the garbage out of your garbage.
Sound redundant? Do you take out the garbage compiling through your house before the kids or dog tip the holder over? Is their lid over the one in the kitchen? If you’re answer is ‘no’, make a few adjustments.
Garbage is a carrier for all kinds of home allergens including one not mentioned yet – chemicals. Fumes from hairspray and disinfectants float through the air.
This scenario is compounded with bugs (gnats) that enjoy rotten food. Therefore, invest in trashcans with lids and take out full bags before trash day.
10. Lower the temperature and presence of dust mites.
Dust mites are insects that feed off human dander. Heat attracts them. Make your home less comfortable for these pests by lowering the temperature. Keep the thermostat between 68 F (20 C) and 72 F (22 C.
Also, encase pillows, bedding and your mattress with dust mite-proof coverings. Swap feather bedding for synthetic material. Read 8 Ways to Get Rid of Dust Mites for more suggestions.
11. Upgrade your walls with paint.
Remove mold-attracting wallpaper with paint. A few manufacturers offer mold-resistant enamel paint in a variety colors. Turn this endeavor into a fun activity by throwing a paint party.
Invite friends and family over on a Saturday. Supply the drinks and food. Then, go to work. The reward – assistance in peeling off wallpaper and a room (or two) upgraded with paint in half the time.
12. Fake out onlookers with artificial plants.
Experts at Medicine Net state household plants are a source of pollen. For example, the weeping fig causes eye allergies. Bypass this kind of challenge by getting artificial ones. Place the real ones outside.
Then, visit a place like Bed Bath and Beyond for high quality artificial replacements that fool any visitors to your home.
Related: These 14 Plants Actually Repel Mosquitos For You
13. Quit being a dirty bird.
Clean your house weekly. Mop floors, wipe counters, dust wood. Vacuum with a HEPA filter device and store away items in plastic containers. In other words, keep your stuff spotless and in order. This alone will do wonders for your allergies.
Protect Your Home and Kids From Allergies
Ready to get your allergies under control? Use the above 13 tips and breathe easy. The trick is to reduce indoor triggers (rodents, cats, dogs, cockroaches, dust mites, mold and pollen) that pollute the air.
Remember, these allergens are manageable. Your task is simple. Focus on cleaning your house using ‘green’ methods. Also, swap out items that either trap or flare up this substance. Then, achieve the type of environment that minimizes allergy symptoms.
Consequently, the outcome might lead to a reduction in allergy medication. (First, consult your doctor before changing the dosage.) Then, enjoy a better quality of life.