Allergens in our homes from dust, mold, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), pollen, pet dander, and dust mites can aggravate allergies and asthma for those who live there. In order to reduce these allergens, here are some tips to make the air in your home cleaner and allergen free.
1. Use an air purifier to reduce dust and allergens, especially in bedrooms at night. Change and clean your purifier’s filters (if it has them) monthly.
2. Vacuum carpets and sofas with a vacuum that has a HEPA filter to pick up fine dust and pollen at least once a week. Empty vacuum weekly and change the filter monthly.
3. Remove shoes at the front door to avoid tracking allergens and dirt throughout your home. Create a space to do this near your front entryway.
4. Dust with reusable electrostatic dust cloths to pick up more dust and other allergen particles. Wash these after each use.
5. Go green and use environmentally friendly and natural cleaners to reduce your exposure to possible volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in standard cleaners. You can also make your own with ingredients like baking soda, oxygen bleach, vinegar, essential oils, lemon juice, and olive oil (as a natural furniture polish). These will be safer for your pets as well.
6. Use your kitchen exhaust fan when cooking to reduce any VOCs.
7. Change bedding and sheets weekly. Cover pillows and mattress with dust mite protectors. Vacuum your mattress monthly to reduce and eliminate dust mites.
8. Reduce mold and moisture in your home by using your air conditioning during the summer months. Clean any mold you find with bleach in a well ventilated area.
9. Change your air conditioner or heater’s filter monthly. Buy specialty filters that reduce allergens more than conventional filters.
10. Caulk and seal windows and replace weather stripping on doors to reduce outside pollen exposure, as well as increase your air conditioning efficiency.
11. Brush pets daily and bathe or wipe them with a damp cloth at least once per week to reduce dander.
12. Avoid using air fresheners which can contain VOCs.
13. If guests want to smoke, ask them to do so outside your home.