How does inside air affect late summer allergies?
There are a lot of allergens in your environment, both inside and out, that can aggravate or trigger allergies. The air inside your home may seem clean enough, but there are a lot of things that can get those allergies going, and dust is often the main culprit. Many of us assume that the air inside our homes is cleaner and safer than the outside air. But the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that indoor air pollution is often more harmful than outdoor air pollution. This research is not good news, especially for sufferers of late summer allergies.
“In the last several years, a growing body of scientific evidence has indicated that the air within homes and other buildings can be more seriously polluted than the outdoor air in even the largest and most industrialized cities.” says the EPA.
So what causes all that dust? You keep your home nice and clean and dust at least once a week, but you still have the sneezing and watery eyes. Everything looks so clean! Are you just a lousy cleaner? No, we’re sure your cleaning skills are up there with the best of them. It’s just that there is a lot more going on with the air in your home than you may realize. From pets to paint, the air quality in your home depends on more than just keeping things clean.
Regardless of how much routine cleaning you do, the amount of dust in your home varies depending on the age and type of your home, the humidity and temperature inside and other factors. What you have in your home, from furniture to food, makes a difference as well. The amount of dust in your air is also determined by who and what lives in the home, like people, pets, plants and dust mites. Yes, dust mites.
What are dust mites and why do they trigger allergies?
Dust mites are tiny bugs that live in nearly every indoor space, including your home. You can dust all you want, but you still won’t get rid of all the dust mites. Just think of them as invisible, quiet roommates. Dust mites eat the dead skin cells that people and pets shed. These dead skin cells float around in the air and accumulate on surfaces throughout your home, and the dust mites go around cleaning them up for you! But there’s a trade-off.
While these little critters keep all that dead skin and dander from piling up, their waste particles (poop) and the fragments of dead dust mites wreak havoc on allergy sufferers. Indoor allergies tend to flare up in late summer when dust mite activity is at its peak. We don’t want to lay all the blame on the lowly dust mite. There’s plenty of other things that are floating around your house.
More irritants are lurking inside your home than you may realize.
There are plenty of other allergens floating around inside your home that can aggravate allergies. Pet dander from dogs, cats and other furry animals can cause plenty of sneezing and itchy eyes too. Even birds, fish and reptiles can cause allergies to flare up. Mold is one of the most typical irritants for allergy sufferers. More often, mold is found outdoors, but it can be found-to some degree-in almost every indoor environment. As mold grows, it releases spores into the air which then become part of all that other dust in your home.
Most homes also have a variety of volatile organic compounds (VOC) floating around in addition to all that dust. VOCs are gases that come from certain liquids and solids and include a wide range of chemicals that can affect allergies and health in general. VOCs are typically higher indoors because they come from materials most of us have in our homes. Things like paint, aerosols, cleaners, hobby supplies, pesticides and other things many of us use daily all contain VOCs. Building materials, furniture and even printers emit some amount of these irritating compounds.
So now that you have a good understanding of the different pollutants in your home, how do you get rid of them all? You go green, that’s how.
How The Maids® and our green maid service can help you clear the air.
We all know how to clean up around the house, at least to some degree. There are plenty of products that will clean just about anything, even if they aren’t the best things for our health. When you use “green” cleaning products, you help reduce the number of chemicals in your home. It’s difficult to go “green” with every cleaning job, but The Maids® chooses environmentally preferred products whenever possible for a healthier clean.
Indoor air pollutants like pet dander, pollen, dust mites, mold spores and tobacco smoke get trapped in your carpets, curtains, bedding and furniture. Vacuuming these surfaces without a HEPA filtration system takes all those contaminates and spreads them into the air and your lungs. But don’t take our word for it.
Here’s what WebMD has to say about HEPA filtration: “Dust mites, mold spores, pollen, and pet dander in the air inside your home can cause problems if your family has allergies or asthma. Using HEPA filters can trap these pollutants and may help bring allergy relief.”
A green maid service not only provides deep, thorough cleaning, but we clean without adding more allergens and irritants into the air of your home. The teams from The Maids® use a HEPA filtration vacuum system, which captures up to 99 percent of bacteria, pollen, allergens, pet dander, and other pollutants that may aggravate allergies and asthma. Their regular visits improve the air quality in your home, so you and the rest of the family can breathe easy.
That’s why it’s so important to remember that just getting things clean is not enough. How things get clean is just as important. A green maid service knows how to get things clean of course, but they also know that cleaning for a healthier environment inside your home is the best kind of cleaning. Why not find out more about green cleaning and how The Maids® can help you and your family make every breath cleaner? You can breathe a sigh of relief by getting a free estimate anytime.