While it’s true a constant runny nose or sneezing could be nothing more than another cold, for 1 out of 5 Americans, allergies or asthma is the culprit causing the running and itchy nose, sneezing, watery eyes and congestion.
You might think you are safe from the biggest allergy triggers once you are inside the safety of your home, but you would be wrong. The most common nasal allergy triggers are found right inside your home: pet dander, dust, mold spores, and even pollen.
What Lies Beneath in Your Home?
So what exactly are you living with? What lies beneath might surprise you. Did you know that eight out of 10 people in the U.S. are exposed to dust mites? That’s because 2,000 dust mites can live on one ounce of carpet dust. Six out of 10 are exposed to dog or cat dander and pet dander is more potent in causing allergic reactions than the animal’s fur or hair. That’s really rough for the 5-10% of Americans that are allergic to pet dander. And just because you are inside does not mean you are safe from pollen. It is carried inside on your clothes, hair, pets, open windows and doors.
What to Do to Keep Allergens Out of Your Home
Americans pay $1.3 billion for allergy-related doctor visits and over $11 billion for allergy medications annually. Wouldn’t it be great if you could do something to help control your allergies and keep some of your hard earned cash in your pocket? It’s not a hopeless battle. There are several things you can do to cut back on the dirt and allergens in your home which can trigger an attack:
- Dust often. By dusting surfaces and washing bedding often, you can control the amount of dust in your home.
- Vacuum often. Vacuuming once or twice a week will reduce the surface dust mites and animal dander in your home. Use a high quality 3 stage HEPA filter type vacuum.
- Professionally clean your carpets and upholstery. Every 3-4 months, have Chem-Dry deep clean your carpets and upholstery to remove 98% of non-living allergens*.
- Reduce pet dander. Wash house pets weekly to cut down on the amount of non-living allergens in your home. In between baths, wipe down pets when they return from outdoors.
- Shut out pollen. Keep windows and doors closed to keep pollen out. Use an air filter and change it regularly.
- Limit dirt intrusion. Put out a durable entrance mat for people to wipe off their feet before entering your home. Then require everyone to take off their shoes so less dirt is tracked inside.
There you have it! It may be impossible to completely eliminate exposure to dirt and allergens, but if you’re diligent in applying these tips you will greatly reduce the non-living allergens that can trigger an allergy attack in your home, and turn it into the sanctuary from the outside world that it should be.
For further information on the amount of dirt and dust that infiltrates our living spaces, check out the infographic below and make sure and share it with your friends.
*Based on results from a study conducted by an independent laboratory using the Chem-Dry Hot Carbonating Extraction process. Allergens tested were dog and cat dander and dust mite matter. Figures are an average across multiple homes.