Spring is a time for sunshine, fresh air and blooming blooms. But for those working of us with allergies, even the most pleasant of breezes can build your home feel like an itchy, scratchy chamber in hell.
With all the germs and allergens lurking in every corner — about 2, 000 species of fungi, to be exact — your house is basically a microbial zoo, according to a Dr. Noah Fierer, microbial ecologist at the University of Colorado Boulder.
Learn how to prepare your space for the battle with this relentless time of year with these seven transformational tips.
1. Upgrade your vacuum .
If you’ve been using the same, decades-old vacuum for years, it is possible to period for an upgrade. Your vacuum could be spewing out the finer dust and debris it collects back into the air — making it an allergy-induced nightmare.
Invest in a vacuum with a high-efficiency particulate air( HEPA) filter, which can trap airborne allergens, according to Jotham Hatch, national educate director for Chem-Dry, a carpet and upholstery cleaning service.
2. Allergy-proof your bed .
When you crawl under your sheets at night, you’re tucking yourself away in a collecting of pollen, mildew, fungus and maybe even some pet dander.
While you should be cleaning your sheets at least every other week, Hatch recommends upping that chore to once a week in hot water( about 130 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the Mayo Clinic ). For added protection, use dust- and mite-proof bedclothe to keep the allergy-triggers at bay and , no matter how irresistible your pet may be, keep them off the bed.
3. Attack the dust .
It’s easy to overlook the dusty corners of your home, but considering that household dust can contain a combo of human skin, animal dander, insect garbage and can set off a respiratory blizzard, dusting your home is crucial during the course of its sneezy season.
To reduce the amount of allergens in your home, dust at least once a week and, if your allergies are really bad, invest in an air purifier to give your lungs the relief it needs.
4. Keep your windows shut and change out your air filters .
After a cold winter, it can be tempting to open your windows to let the springtime air in, but for those with allergies, that fresh air can quickly become a nightmare scenario.
During allergy season, keep your windows shut and stick with central air to keep your place cool. Hatch suggests checking and changing out the air filters in your heaters and air conditioning vents to prevent clay and dust from gathering and circulating around your house.
5. Put your houseplants on the offense .
Plants have a route of making a home looking bright and fresh, but they are also ripe grounds for mold to grow. To avoid mold spores from prospering in your planters, place houseplants in an area with good circulation.
The Mayo Clinic also suggests sprinkling aquarium gravel over the clay to limit the growth of mold.
6. Don’t wear shoes in the house .
If you want to prevent allergens from entering your home, leave footwear at the door. Your shoes pick up the dirt and pollen that loom outside and when you wear them indoors you’re basically pollinating the floors of your home just like a bee.
If you can’t stand having your bare feet uncovered all night, slip on some house shoes and make sure to rinse them sporadically, as clay and dust from your floor can collect on your indoor footwear over time.
7. Re-dress your drapes .
Heavy draperies can accumulate dust, mildew and pollen like a magnet. And when you pull them aside to let the spring shine in, you are able to conjure a dust devil of kinds within seconds.
Swap out thick curtains for sun and breezy fabrics made with cotton or synthetic cloths — and don’t forget to clean them often. If you’re extra ambitious, you are able to throw them in with your weekly sheet clean to double up your defense.
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