For allergy sufferers, spring cleaning is a great opportunity to clean many over looked items that could be harboring allergens and help reduce symptoms. On the other hand, the cleaning itself may set off fits of sneezing, watery eyes, and congestion. Whether you dread this process or find it strangely satisfying, it’s got to be done especially if you suffer from allergies.
Here are some cleaning tips to keep in mind as you spring clean your home. These cleaning tips will help both you and your family breathe easier.
Clean or replace filters on humidifiers, dehumidifiers, air purifiers, air conditioning units and furnaces. If you are replacing your filters, try replacing them with HEPA filters which are ideal for allergy suffers.
Vents can be easily overlooked, but particles can build up in them. Unscrew vents for the heat or air system, put them in the sink and rinse with soap and water.
Clean Any Damp Areas
Monitor areas that are likely to produce mold, such as closets, inside cabinets near sinks, the bathroom floor, areas under appliances and areas around pipes. Wiping walls, floors or ceilings around these areas with a solution of vinegar is a safe effective mold deterrent.
Clean The Inside AND Outside of Windows
Use bleach to clean your window sill.Then you can either hose off your window screens in the backyard, or use a vacuum to suck up the dirt and dust embedded in the screen.
Get Under Things
If you haven’t moved your furniture while cleaning to get under or around things, now is the time to do so. A thorough cleaning is what you need! Just because you can’t see the dust or dirt does not mean it’s not affecting your breathing.
Vacuum Mattresses and Furniture
If you have any upholstered furniture, vacuuming and steam cleaning are great ways to reduce the amount of allergens in your home.
Wash Your Bedding
Using hot water and special laundry detergent that help kill dust mites and eliminate other allergens. If you have not already encased your bedding in allergy relief bedding, take this opportunity to do so. Check your pillows as well. Replace them every 2-3 years and cover them with hypoallergenic encasings.
Clean Your Curtains
This should be done periodically since they are huge allergen collectors. Make sure you read the care instructions before cleaning your curtains. Some may be ok to throw in the wash, while others may have to be steamed cleaned or even taken to the dry cleaners.
Get Your Carpets and Rugs Cleaned Professionally
If you have smaller rugs, like a bathroom rug, throw it in the wash. If your smaller rugs are not washable, you should consider replacing them with rugs that are.
Don’t dust with cotton cloths though, they just spread particles around on surfaces and send them back into the air. Instead, use electrostatic or microfiber cloths which trap dust or a vacuum attachment designed specifically for dusting.
In addition to the tips above, the following tips are some cleaning principles to stick to in order to minimize allergy attacks while cleaning.
- Wear a dust mask.
- Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter. Click here to browse vacuums that have HEPA air filtration.
- If you have pets, clean off their fur when they come in from the outside to avoid bringing pollen into your home.
- Keep the humidity in your home below 50% to prevent growth of dust mites. You may want to consider purchasing a dehumidifier.
- Clean “top to bottom” so that any stirred-up dust and other debris that settles on the floor will be sure to be cleaned up.
- Avoid harsh cleaning chemicals, which can aggravate sensitive nasal passages and airways.
- Invest in a HEPA air purifier. HEPA air purifiers are very effective at controlling particles and allergens such as pollen, dust, and dander.
We hope you find these tips helpful and please check back on our blog for more spring cleaning tips!
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