Allergies can be hard to deal with. And when you’re allergic to things in your environment, such as pollen or dust mites, it can be even harder. However, there are solutions. Did you know that deep cleaning your home can make a huge difference in your level of allergy suffering? It’s true. Here’s how to clean your home to get the most relief!
1. Know Your Triggers!
The very first step is to identify what allergens you’re allergic to. Many people already know this, but if you’ve had allergies symptoms your entire life you might not have been able to nail down exactly what your trigger is. A doctor is the best person to help you identify your allergies, but below are some of the most common triggers to begin your investigation. Once you know what your triggers are, you can focus on cleaning specifically those areas!
Common Allergy Triggers:
- Cat and dog dander
- Tree, grass, and weed pollen
- Dust mites
- Mold spores
2. Avoid Strong or Scented Cleaning Chemicals
You might be tempted to get the strongest possible cleaning supplies for your allergy-eliminating cleaning session. However, these can actually make your allergies worse. Consider trading these strong chemicals out for more natural cleaners like vinegar or baking soda.
3. Find and Eliminate Standing Water
Standing water is a prime breeding ground for mold and other bacteria, which are a huge cause of allergies for many people. You might have standing water triggering your allergies and not even know it! Check your house for any standing water, which is often caused by leaks. Be sure to check under sinks and around water-using appliances such as your dishwasher.
4. Replace or Wash Shower Curtains
Another source of mold allergies is shower curtains. Because shower curtains are often damp, they are a source of mold which can spread throughout your house. Take the time to wash your shower curtain. Check the care tag for washing instructions, but you can often throw shower curtains in the washer and hang them back up to dry.
5. Keep the House Dry and Cool
While you’re eliminating mold throughout the house, be sure to keep the house dry and cool to prevent mold spores from growing again. Try to keep the house at 50% relative humidity or lower.
6. Dust Well
You probably regularly dust the surfaces that you can see, but dust builds up all over your house. Some of the most common offenders include window sills, window frames, door frames, tops of tall furniture, and ceiling fans.
7. Dispose of Dust Properly
Feather dusters just push dust into the air instead of getting rid of it. You can see how this could make your allergies even worse. For allergy-busting dusting, use a damp cloth or paper towel to trap the dust instead, and be sure to wash the cloth or dispose of the paper towel right away to prevent the release of dust back into your home.
8. Clean Upholstery and Carpets
Your carpets, rugs, and upholstered furniture all act as air filters for your home, trapping dust and other allergens within their fibers. In order to permanently remove these allergens, your carpets and upholstery should be vacuumed at least weekly. A professional cleaning every few months is a good idea, as professionals can get a deeper clean than a normal vacuum.
9. Clean Sheets Regularly
Your bed sheets collect dust, dead skin, and more to create a perfect environment for dust mites. Cleaning professionals recommend that you wash your bedding every 1-2 weeks at a minimum. If you find that your allergies get worse at night, cleaning your mattress and pillows could do wonders.
10. Change HVAC Filters Regularly
Remember to change your filter every 6-12 months. If you have severe allergies, change your filters every 90 days. Check to see that your MERV rating is set correctly. The majority of homes use filters rated between 7-12. Keep in mind that a higher MERV rating is not always better. A rating that’s too high can actually reduce airflow, which makes things worse. It won’t hurt to conduct some research on your own system to find the highest rating that still retains maximum airflow.