IMPROVE INDOOR AIR QUALITY IN YOUR HOME
Improving indoor air quality in your home can help to avoid asthma flare-ups, allergy symptoms and keep you breathing easy through the colder months.
You can reduce allergens inside your home — and your exposure to them — by making some simple changes. Here are some strategies.
Cleaning Your Home
Cleaning your home reduces the accumulation of pet dander, mold, and dust lurking in your home.
Vacuuming the carpets and area rugs at least once a week or more with a HEPA Filter vacuum. Opting for hard-surface flooring instead of wall-to-wall carpeting also helps to cut down on allergens in the home.
Regularly cleaning bedding, drapes, and other textured items that attract allergens—particularly if you have pets. Also consider using dust mite proof covers on pillows, as well as mattresses and box springs, whenever possible.
Clearing the clutter as it traps and holds dust that can trigger reactions.
Bathrooms are another potential source of mold. Keep them well ventilated and scrub off any visible mold that collects in the shower, on fixtures and even walls.
In the cold months especially, it’s recommended to open windows to let fresh air in from time to time and ensure to use fans in the kitchen to remove cooking fumes. Operating window and attic fans when the weather permits will also increase outdoor air ventilation.
Indoor plants are pretty, and are touted for their ability to improve indoor air quality, but if not maintained properly they can also collect and foster the growth of mold. If indoor allergens are a problem, you’ll want to avoid them as they can be triggers.
Change Furnace Filters
Change your furnace filters! If you have a forced-air heating system, be certain to change the filters regularly as they trap that dust and other airborne irritants instead of being recirculated throughout your home.
Invest in an air purifier if you’re allergic to indoor allergens and can’t control the source of the problem (like furry friends). When placed in the most commonly used areas of the house, these devices (best being ionic purifiers) help to capture irritants that trigger your symptoms.
It is particularly important to take as many of these steps as possible when completing tasks that produce pollutants like painting, paint stripping, heating with kerosene heaters, welding, soldering, sanding, etc. You might also choose to do some of these activities outdoors, if you can and if weather permits.