Spring is a common time for those who suffer from allergies to start feeling the change of season. Itchy eyes, scratchy throats and stuffy noses are normal, especially when the flowers start blooming and the pollen starts dancing in the wind.
But let’s not forget about those indoor culprits that keep us sneezing throughout the entire year. Allergies, both indoor and outdoor, are very common. According to WebMD, there are an estimated 50 million Americans who are allergic to dust, dander, mold and mites, all found inside the comfort of our very own home.
Here are some common allergies and some tips from allergy experts to help you recognize what you might be allergic to and how to prevent your symptoms from overwhelming you.
Common Indoor Allergens
Dust: Those little dust bunnies are indeed something to sneeze at. Dust contains dozens of things including small amounts of plant pollen, human and animal hairs, insects, paper fibers, food fibers, outdoor soil, human skin cells and other allergy triggers.
Dust Mites: House dust mites are little critters that live in our homes. Dust mites feed on dust and flourish in our homes. They are the most common trigger of allergy and asthma according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.
Mold: Mold is another name for fungus and is different from plants in how they reproduce and grow. The seeds of fungi are called spores and are spread by the wind outdoors and the air indoors. Indoors, mold grows wherever there is a source of moisture, especially in bathrooms, kitchens and basements.
Pet Dander: Pet allergies are surprisingly not caused by dog or cat hair. Instead, the allergic reaction is caused by a protein in the animal’s saliva. This protein is sticky and light and clings to clothes, shoes and even hair and can be transported from home to home, school to school and business to business.
How to Keep Your Home Allergy Free
Keep Your Home Cool and Dry: Keep the relative humidity in your home below 50 percent so allergy triggers like mold can’t grow. Ask the professionals at Buckeye Heating & Cooling to see what HVAC systems are best for you.
Vacuum Often: Vacuum your carpets at least once per week. Use vacuum bags that have a special High-Efficiency Particulate Arresting (HEPA) filter to grab all the allergy causing triggers and keep them tucked away in the bag.
Dust Often: Clean hard surfaces and floors weekly with treated dust mops and damp rags. Refrain from using a dry cloth or feather duster because the dust will simply go back into the air.
Decorate at a Minimum: Shelf sitters, baskets and dried flowers are dust collectors, so keep them to a minimum to prevent allergy triggers.
Wash Your Bedding: Keep sheets, bedding and pillow cases laundered weekly to remove allergy triggers.
HVAC maintenance: Furnace filters, vacuum filters and air purification filters should be cleaned or changed based on the manufacturers recommendations.
Consult Buckeye Heating & Cooling for the best way to keep your HVAC systems working at their best. If you live in the Columbus area, call us today at 614-888-HEAT for a free estimate!