It’s all anyone is talking about right now – how bad the pollen is – but what are some ways to actually alleviate your allergies? For starters, good ‘ol fashion Claritin® might do the trick; however, for long-term results, spring into May with a clean house! Be careful when you are cleaning—you could actually release allergens rather than relieve your allergies.
To help you clean up, let’s chat and chew about ways you can overcome spring-cleaning dilemmas and breathe easy this season.
- Check the bathrooms.While mold may not affect your day-to-day, the combination of spring pollen, dust, and mold may overwhelm your system. A good place to check for mold and mildew is the bathroom, which is typically more humid than other rooms, leading to their growth.
- Clap out curtains. While curtains can brighten up a room, they are huge allergen collectors—they actually should be cleaned more frequently. Some curtains can be cleaned in the washer machine, while others might need to be steam cleaned. If you dry clean them, try to air them out before you put them back to minimize exposure to dry cleaning chemicals, which could also cause an allergic reaction.
- Power down ceiling fans. I love ceiling fans, but I do not like how much dust they collect—and how out-of-reach they can be. While I try to clean the ones in my apartment every month, it’s not uncommon that I simply don’t get to it. The blades accumulate dust, which enters your breathing zone when the fan is turned on. Use a microfiber duster, which will “grab” dust rather than just stirring it around—even a pillowcase might do the trick!
- Don’t forget the furniture.While the most allergen-resistant furniture is made from leather or other materials that can’t harbor allergens (like wood), most of us have at least some upholstered pieces in our homes. Vacuuming or steam-cleaning are great ways to drastically reduce the amount of allergens in furniture.
- Check under things.When you clean, do you move your furniture and thoroughly clean underneath, or simply scoot around your tables and chairs? If you’ve cut corners along the way, now’s the time to commit to vacuuming. Getting rid of concealed dust bunnies will definitely help you breathe better.
- Blinds and shutters. While these types of window treatments tend to be better than curtains when it comes to harboring allergens, they still need to be dusted or wiped down.
Many allergy sufferers would start sneezing at the thought of spring-cleaning, especially because it often kicks up allergens that exist but are not necessarily in our breathing zone. Below are a few cleaning guidelines to keep in mind in order to minimize allergy attacks this season:
- Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
- Wear a dust mask.
- Clean “top to bottom” so that you make sure to clean any stirred-up dust and other debris that settles on the floor.
- Avoid harsh cleaning chemicals, which can exacerbate sensitive nasal passages and airways.
Don’t get left in the dust this spring – start putting together you plan of attack now to get your house clean and your allergies suppressed! Have some tips of your own? Share in the comments section below and help others through this sneezin’ season.