A cat sitting in a basket

Surprising Things in Your Home Causing Allergy Flareups

November 14, 2016

Allergies affect 50 million people in the United States every year, and that number is on the rise, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. If you’re one of these people, you probably dust diligently and do your best to keep your house free of known allergy triggers. But you might not realize come common household things can also cause an allergy flareup.

Pollen Around Windows

Many allergy sufferers hibernate during allergy season, fearing the pollen, grasses, and other triggers they commonly find outdoors. However, those nasties could creep inside if your windows aren’t properly maintained. Tiny allergens can easily get through cracks around your window and its frame. Repair those gaps with caulk to keep allergens outside.

Pet Fur and Dander in Air Ducts

A cat sitting in a basket
Image via Flickr by andreboeni

Our furry pets give us lots of love, but they can also bring on allergy symptoms. But you might not realize that the pet hair you can see on your couches and carpet isn’t all you have to worry about.

Furry pets like cats and dogs constantly shed hair and dander. It settles on those surfaces you’re already tending, but also lingers in your HVAC system’s air ducts. Since your air ducts are metal, they actually attract fur and dander. They should be cleaned regularly every year by a professional to maintain your home’s air quality.

If you’re sensitive to pet hair but have your heart set on a furry friend, consider a pet recommended for people with allergies and asthma. You’re less likely to suffer allergy symptoms living with a Bichon Frise dog or a Balinese cat. Installing an air purifier with a HEPA air filter can also help reduce the pet allergens in your home. True HEPA filters can effectively remove 99.97 percent of the allergens in your home, including those as small as 0.3 microns. Bathing your pet can also reduce shedding. 

Dust Mites and Their Waste on Your Sheets

We know to regularly wash our sheets to eliminate sweat and odors. But you might not realize being lax with your laundry could provoke your allergies. Every night when you’re sleeping with the love of your life ,there’s someone else sharing your bed with you. Around six million dust mites. And their fecal matter. You can stop your stomach churning and eliminate all those allergies by washing your bedding with hot water at least weekly.

Mold on Your Shower Curtain

You head to the shower to wash away all the things that might trigger your allergies, so thinking there might be something in that environment to set off your allergies is reprehensible. However, if you have a shower curtain, it’s probably harbouring mold. Shower curtains are the perfect breeding ground for mold because they’re damp and porous. If you can, replace your curtain with a glass door instead. If that’s not possible, take care by cleaning your shower walls with mold-killing sprays. Your shower curtain should also withstand regular washing in your machine.

Make sure you don’t overlook these surprising allergy triggers next time you’re cleaning up your home. Taking the time to thoroughly remove them will help you feel better and brighter all year round.

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