Ah-choo! Bummer, spring is here and instead of enjoying the sweet smells of budding trees and fragrant flowers, you’re sniffling, sneezing and have a runny nose, all common symptoms of spring allergies. As trees, grass and flowers push to quickly grow, they release tiny grains or pollen in the air to fertilize other plants. For some of us, our body sees the pollen as a danger and tries to fight it off with histamines, triggering the suffering. Dust, mold and pet dander all have similar effects to pollen and while over the counter decongestants and anti-histamines can provide relief, so can implementing some best practices around the house.
- Wash and protect your bedding. You spend about eight hours a night in your bed, you don’t want to share it with dust mites. Combat these allergens by washing your sheets, pillowcases and blankets in the hottest water possible, per the manufacturers’ laundering guidelines; 130 F is ideal. Use dust mite proof mattress, box spring and pillowcase covers and choose synthetic materials over down and wool bedding.
- Declutter your surfaces. Knickknacks are not only difficult to clean around but their nooks and crannies collect and trap dust, attributing to your indoor allergies. Clear your tabletops of books, magazines and other items. Store toys, games and stuffed animals in plastic bins.
- Keep your windows closed. It’s tempting to let in some fresh air after a long winter but you’ll only invite in more pollen. Instead, rely on your air conditioning or fans while pollen is high. Take the time to clean out your window sills and frames as well.
- Clean your floors weekly. Carpet, especially the high pile kind, is not an ideal floor covering for allergy suffers. If you can’t replace it with wood or vinyl, be sure to vacuum it at least once a week. Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter (the same kind The Maids uses FYI) and damp mop all your hard or bare floors.
- Push pets outside. It’s the perfect season to allow your dog to play outside, reducing your exposure to his saliva and dander. When Fido is inside, wash your hands after pets and be sure to vacuum where he lays, washing any pet bedding once a week.
- Replace your furnace filter. It’s a great idea to replace your furnace filter after the heating season no matter if you have allergies or not. A clean air filter ensures you’re not just recirculating dust, dander and pollen through your home.
- Recalibrate your home’s humidity. With dry winter temperatures behind us, there’s no need to keep running your home’s humidifier. In fact, a hot, humid house is a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Maintain an indoor temperature of 68-degrees to 72-degrees and humidity level at 50 percent.
A good spring cleaning can go a long way to eliminating or controlling indoor allergens. The Maids offers a special spring cleaning service that sucks up all the dust, mites and dander that’s hiding in your corners and crevices. We use special HEPA-equipped backpack vacuums, which can capture up to 99 percent of pollen and allergens from your home. Allergies won’t stand a chance and you’ll be left with a home that’s ready for relaxing. Contact us today for a free estimate.