Spring has rolled around and while for some of us this spells the casting off of winter coats, throwing open the windows and a return to the outdoors, for many, it means hayfever, running noses, itchy eyes and the feeling that everything is out to get you sneezing. Even those of us who don’t have allergies can be prone to hayfever during spring, so if you’re sneezing a lot and wondering 'what could I be allergic to in my house?' Read on to find out how to create a safe haven at home.
Here are our top tips to reduce indoor allergens this spring – do you pass the house allergies test?
Create an allergy-proof bedroom
Not only is the bedroom your retreat from the world outside – the place where you need to be assured of a good night’s sleep and the ability to relax – it’s also a prime zone for allergens in the home. While not everyone is allergic to the same things, dust mites, pollen, and dander often gather around things like clothes, bed linen, carpet, and curtains – all things you’re likely to have in abundance in your bedroom.
Here are the ways to combat a build-up of allergens in the bedroom
- Wash sheets regularly, and change your pillowcase more often if necessary
- Don’t store coats or boots in the bedroom
- Wash your curtains regularly
- Keep pets out of your bedroom, no matter how cute they are
- Vacuum carpets and dust regularly using a damp cloth rather than a feather duster
If you’re an acute allergy sufferer, invest in an air purifier or humidifier to ensure you can get a good night’s sleep in an allergy-proof bedroom.
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Keep the bathroom and kitchen allergy-free
Damp and mould can also cause spring lurgy, so ensure that:
- There’s a functioning extractor fan
- Wet areas are kept dry, including the fridge
- Shower curtains are cleaned regularly
- Clean away any food and keep it in a sealed container: they attract cockroaches, which can cause allergic reactions
It’s also important to make sure any leaks are sealed to stop mould from accumulating.
Take steps to ensure the whole house is allergen-free
There are many things you can do to reduce allergens overall in your house. These include:
- Reducing clutter (lots of small ornaments, books and so on catch dust)
- Making sure your pot plants are well-drained as they can be a source of mould
- Install washable curtains or blinds
- Choose leather or vinyl coverings for sofas rather than upholstery
- Choose wood, tile or linoleum floor coverings, or a low pile carpet.
If you’re really suffering, look into getting a home allergen inspection or even go as far as building an allergy-free home.
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