Spring allergy season can wreak havoc for allergy sufferers. That’s mostly due to surges in airborne pollen. Here are a few simple tips to make sure the inside of your house gets you some relief during one of the most beautiful time of the year.
- Don’t bring allergens inside. Use two doormats – place a mat outside each entryway and one inside as well. These mats will catch and trap many irritants, keeping your home cleaner. Shake them out often. You could also make a policy of removing your shoes when inside and ask guests to do the same. Even better, take shoes off at the door—it easily travels in on your shoes.
- Keep porches clean or put off using them a lot until the season is over. Once the green stuff is gone for the season, have the cushions professionally cleaned and power wash the entire porch to get that pollen out of the screens, posts and flooring.
- Keep the windows and doors closed (same goes for when you’re in your car). This is the time of year when you are really excited to let the fresh air in, but unfortunately, this lets the pollen in too. Keep windows shut and turn on the A/C if need be. Be sure to change your HVAC filters; HEPA filters can help trap more pollen and change your filters monthly. You and your sinuses will find the extra expense is well worth it.
- Be vigilant about dusting everything twice as often as you usually would. Make sure not to ignore those hard-to-reach places like the ceiling fan blades. Buying an extender for your duster is well worth the cost.
- Vacuum well and regularly. A good vacuum can be a game-changer for anyone who suffers from seasonal allergies. But if your vacuum spews more dust and debris than it picks up, you could be doing yourself more harm than good. Invest in or use a vacuum with a HEPA filter (check to see that it’s the kind that filters allergens, or check out this list of Best Vacuums for Allergy Sufferers on the Consumer Report website so you aren’t blowing allergens around while you are cleaning. Don’t just vacuum the floor—get window sills and corners where the floor and walls meet.
- Consider getting hardwood flooring throughout your home. Bare floors that are regularly cleaned are a simple way to cut down on a major allergen-holder. If you must keep carpets around, make sure to get them professionally cleaned every quarter.
- Clean the air. Use a humidifier or air-purifier while you sleep. That way the ⅓ or ¼ of your life that you spend sleeping will be in filtered air. It’s important to keep the unit clean (read your unit’s instructions for specifics) so that it works at maximum effectiveness.
- Wash that green right out of your hair. Your hair is a pollen magnet. If you don’t wash it out before bed, you’ll have pollen-covered pillows. This is not good. Wash your hair after your last trip outside before bed or consider wearing a hat or bandana when you’re outside and remove it before you enter the house.
- Give your pets a good brushing and wipe their paws & face off. Before your pets track it through the house, consider wiping of their paws & face and give them a good brushing before they come inside. (Immediately wash the brush and vacuum the area if you do it inside). Keep your pets out of your bed or consider washing your sheets a little more frequently if your pets sleep with you, since their fur will carry pollen in even if you clean them off well.
- Make smart selections for your landscape. The yellow, sticky pollen that bees carry from plant to plant rarely causes allergic reactions. It’s the fine, lightweight particles that are blown about by wind that trigger discomfort. Avoid adding allergenic trees like Maple (male), Birch and Ash (male) to the landscape. Instead, choose low-allergy trees like Dogwood, Double-flowered Cherry and Magnolia. Female Ash and female Maple trees are considered low-allergy, too, but buy from a reliable nursery source to be sure of the tree’s gender. Low-allergy flowers include Astilbe, Impatiens, Hosta, Scabiosa, Columbine and Viola.
Not only does a clean house make for a more pleasant and enjoyable living environment for all, but clean conditions also help keep allergens under control. Call us today! We have experienced housekeepers who can make your inside spaces more clean and enjoyable even during this time of year.