Allergies make our lives difficult. When we are out in public, allergens are basically everywhere, and wearing a mask to cover our mouths and noses is the only way to avoid the triggers.
But allergens can be hard to deal with, especially when trying to relax and unwind inside our homes. They settle on every exposed surface, and never-ending cleaning is the only solution to keep them away.
Fortunately, cleaning doesn’t have to be so frequent if we know how to do the chore wisely. Here are a few tips on cleaning to help keep allergens to a minimum without cleaning for every second of the day.
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Instead of a Duster, Use a Microfiber Cloth
Cleaning to remove dust must be done at least once or twice in two weeks. Dust can build up pretty fast. For those with allergies, even a slight buildup can trigger reactions. The first step is wearing a mask to prevent allergen inhalation.
Using a feather or synthetic duster when dusting is not enough as they only move particles around without trapping the dust. Instead, use a damp microfiber cloth to wipe surfaces. This ensures that no dust is left behind. Make sure to wash the cloth often while wiping.
Invest in a Strong Vacuum With a Hepa Filter
Investing in a good vacuum will limit your vacuuming to once or twice a week. A normal vacuum can remove visible dirt and dust from surfaces but are typically not strong enough to remove smaller particles.
In Good Housekeeping, Dr. Ryan Roten explained that anything with HEPA filters (high-efficiency particulate air) can remove various-sized particles in the air. That includes allergens like dust, pollen, and dander. Thus, a vacuum with strong suction power, equipped with a HEPA filter, will help manage allergies inside your home. Properly seal collected dust before disposing of it in an outside bin.
Thoroughly Clean the Bedding, Curtains, Upholstery, and carpets
Dust and allergens settle everywhere but adhere more to fibers and textiles.
Bedsheets, blankets, and pillowcases must be changed and washed every week. Dead skin cells and natural oils cling onto these materials, so you need to wash them in hot soapy water thoroughly. Mayo Clinic suggests using hypoallergenic covers that prevent dust mites from settling in your bedding. Also, don’t forget to change out the curtains and drapes. Opt to use the dryer instead of air-drying outside.
Other upholstery that may be difficult to wash, like sofas and chairs, require regular vacuuming, focusing specifically on the folds and crevices. Deep cleaning should be done by a professional at least once or twice every year.
On the other hand, Carpets and rugs catch most of the dust and allergens from the air. Vacuuming will help remove these particles. But professional carpet cleaning that involves deep extraction must be done every 12 to 18 months to remove the buildup from these materials. But if you can do without carpets, a bare floor would definitely be easier to sweep, mop, and clean.
Check Your Air Conditioning System
Your air conditioning systems help filter the air inside your home, but they can also contribute to the circulation of allergens if they are not working in their best condition. Check the filters installed in these systems and clean or replace them as needed.
Having your air ducts and dryer vents cleaned will also minimize the circulation of these allergens. By removing the large buildups in these airways, you are preventing dust particles from reentering your home.
Manage Pet Dander
Aside from shedding fur, our pets leave dander inside our homes. Dander is composed of microscopic skin flakes from animals, much like human dandruff, which can cause allergic reactions to some people. Regularly bathing our pets will remove these dead skin cells from their bodies.
Vacuuming will also help in collecting dander from the floors and carpets. Other preventive ways of reducing dander involve limiting areas where pets roam and not letting them onto beds and upholstery.
Keep the Allergens Outside
Minimizing unfiltered air from entering your home will save you time from cleaning and removing allergens. Keeping the doors and windows closed will prevent pollen from getting inside. The same goes for removing shoes before entering the house to prevent spreading allergens on the floor.
Cleaning doesn’t have to take up all our time. Because of these allergies, we have to clean regularly, especially when our health is on the line, but a good strategy can prolong the time before we have to do it all over again. With the previous steps in mind, let us continue keeping our families safe and away from these allergens.Tags: Cleaning to Address Allergy Triggers, dryer vents cleaned, dust mites, HEPA filters