Allergies are becoming increasingly common, especially as the number of pollutants in the air increases. Children, adults, and even indoor pets could suffer significantly from allergies.
These may not last all year but be specific to certain seasons, such as hay fever and allergic asthma during the spring.
While we do our best to avoid triggers when outside, our homes are also not safe from particles that could cause allergies to flare up, indoor areas might even be more problematic for those suffering from allergies.
This is because the particles have no place to go but spin around in a confined space. Unfortunately, this makes them much more likely to attack an allergy-prone person sooner rather than later.
What Are the Most Common Types Of Allergies?
People can be allergic to a wide variety of elements in the environment. The most common allergens are pollen, dust mites, animal dander, and mold.
Pollen is an airborne allergen (a fine yellow powder) picked up and moved by the wind, birds, insects, or other animals. Various trees, grasses, and weeds produce pollen, which for many people, is a year-round problem and even more aggravating when it makes its way into their homes. Pollen is one of the several common allergens in the United States. 81% of people who suffer from allergies say they are allergic to pollen.
Dust Mites (also called bed mites) is cosmopolitan pyroglyphid that lives in human habitation. These microscopic arachnids are among the leading allergy offenders for people with allergic asthma. Invisible to the eye, dust mites are usually located in pillows, carpets, mattresses, and upholstered furniture since they live on the dead skin and dander.
Dust: This allergen is composed of many things in our homes, such as clothing fibers, dirt, bacteria, pet hair or dander, shed skin cells, and other material that accumulates from everyday living. Dust is nearly impossible to eliminate.
Pet Dander: Dander is dead skin cells (and the oils in the skin cells) from animals. People seem to have more severe allergic reactions to cats. This is probably due to the enzyme from cats, which can also cause allergic reactions in humans. In addition, cats leave saliva-tainted hair and dander behind them, carrying a double allergen-trigger threat.
Molds are multiple fungi that grow in filaments and reproduce by creating spores. The mold grows in damp, warm, and humid conditions. Therefore, mold can be found in basically any environment or season.
Molds produce irritating substances that can act as allergy-causing elements (allergens) in sensitive persons. Some molds create toxic substances known as mycotoxins, but mold itself is not dangerous or toxic. The mold may not generate any health impacts or lead to symptoms in people who are sensitive to molds.
How to Control Allergies at Home?
Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to ensure that your allergies are controlled at home.
These steps are mainly geared toward reducing the allergens that enter your abode. However, to effectively allergy-proof your home, you may have to deal with the issue in a detailed manner.
The days when only chronically ill people used air purifiers in their homes are long gone, and now every modern house has an air purifier to prevent allergies and improve life quality. Pollutants and allergens in homes can cause real health damage, so air purifiers are considered an essential machine in every home.
High polluted cities like Skopje or Kanpur must use air purifiers to avoid toxic gases that can cause real health problems. Still, the air purifiers can also help avoid allergens even in low polluted cities.
Get some air purifiers to clear the air of allergens as much as possible. A true HEPA or activated charcoal filter would be best here, as it absorbs the particles and doesn’t let them get out. Activated charcoal filters would also absorb odors and smells that could trigger your allergies without warning.
Let’s find out which air purifiers are the best for analyzing their advantages and disadvantages.
Top 5 Air Purifiers to Buy
IQAir HealthPro Air Purifier
Using its Hyper-HEPA filter and forced state filtration system, this air purifier can stop even particles small as point zero three microns. This means that viruses, dust mites, and pet dander will be a thing of the past.
|Good for people with chemical sensitivities||Expensive
|High built quality|
|Easy to use|
Alen Breathesmart FLEX home air purifier
This is an efficient and more affordable home air purifier. Although it cannot filter the smallest partials just because it uses a standard HEPA filter and does not have a separate odor filter, it is still a very efficient and practical air purifier.
Its rating for air quality is better than every other air purifier in the same category. The most brilliant feature is that Alen comes with a smart sensor that can sense the amount of pollution and adjust the fans to keep the air quality optimal.
|Smart sensor scanner||Cannot filter tiny particles
Not as fast as the IQ Air
|Good Build Quality|
|Easy to Use|
|Ionizer for air particles|
Rabbit Air HEPA MinusA2 Air purifier
This Rabbit Air air purifier can cover rooms up to 815 square feet. In addition, it has an ingenious system customizable to target specific purification of toxins, odors, germs, or pet dander.
It is built with a standard HEPA filter working alongside a carbon filter, doing an outstanding job of purifying the air. It is an efficient air purifier perfect for any small apartment or house.
|Optimal coverage||No timer control|
|Particle filter customization|
|Perfect for those who have pets|
|5 different filters|
Honeywell 50250 HEPA Air purifier
This is another HEPA-certified air purifier that is designed in a way to be mobile in the house. This is perfect because most expensive cleaners are usually attached to one room, but you can move to the desired room to purify with the Honeywell.
It can cover 390 square feet, consuming air filtered and circulated throughout the machine, which then blows it out from a 360-degree angle. The one drawback is that this air purifier is not programmable but indicates how many pollutants the filters have captured.
|Suitable for every use||No air quality monitor|
|Unique 360-degree design|
Coway AP-1512HH practical air purifier
As we go down the list, we get more compact air purifiers. For example, the Coway AP-1512HH is a very small and practical air purifier, but it also covers 300 square feet with its four-stage filtration system. It also has a HEPA filter that removes small partials and odor filters.
This air purifier has an ionizing system, but the good thing is that it can be turned off. The company representatives confirm that the ozone created by the Coway is minimal. The best thing is that it is hushed.
|Perfect for small rooms||Cannot cover large rooms|
Your pillows and mattresses should have covers resistant to dust mites, pet dander, and other allergens.
Even so, it would help to wash your loose beddings at least once a week to get any stray allergens out. The water for washing them should be at least 54°C or 130°F to kill any harmful elements. Also, you should get hypoallergenic materials for bedding instead of wool covers or feather/down fillings.
People spend one-third of their lives sleeping. So, it’s important to invest in allergy-proof bedding. That can significantly decrease your allergy symptoms and warrant that you get a good night’s sleep.
Even allergy Doctors recommend that you cover all your bedding, pillows, mattress, box springs, comforters, and feather beds in allergy-proof bedding.
If you’re prone to allergies, your bedroom floors shouldn’t have carpeting. The same goes for all the other rooms. Go with area rugs instead, or switch to wooden/linoleum.
If carpeting is unavoidable, it’s best to use a low-pile option and regularly shampoo it. It would help if you also considered investing in a vacuum with a true HEPA filter that could catch the smallest allergen particles and trap them inside.
Curtains or Blinds
Don’t go for blinds that could trap allergens like dust, pollen, or spores. These could be released into the air when dusted. Instead, invest in washable cotton or synthetic curtains.
Washable roller shades should preferably replace any horizontal binds.
If you have air conditioning, keep the windows shut in the hot pollen season. Any mold or condensation should be cleaned from the windows as soon as possible.
If you’re experiencing a cold climate, invest in double-paned windows. These would hopefully prevent particles that cause viral infections from coming in.
Your chairs should be easy to clean. The same goes for your tables, dressers, nightstands, and other furniture. The best materials to invest in are metal, plastic, wood, or leather.
Fabric coverings should be used sparingly on large pieces of furniture. However, you can achieve an upholstered effect with some hypoallergenic cushions.
Consider keeping them in closed storage if you have many knickknacks, ornaments, magazines, and books. If they must be displayed, keep them in glass display cases instead of out in the open. These items are the best at collecting dust and retaining them most stubbornly.
Houses with children usually pose the most risk for allergies since many items are scattered. Store away toys, stuffed animals, and games in plastic boxes or bins with covers.
If you have severe allergies to your pet, you may have to find a new home for it. If this isn’t possible, you should keep it away from the bedroom at the very least.
You should also make sure to bathe it weekly to reduce its dander.
Several potted plants in the house may attract or release pollen, aggravating your asthma and other respiratory issues.
The dirt they grow in could also spread mold around your house, making things worse. To avoid this, try going for fake plants instead.
If this isn’t viable, you should get some aquarium gravel and cover the open dirt. Then, check the top 7 best air purifiers for pets.
The place where you do your cooking should have a proper ventilation system. Either install an exhaust fan (vented) to do away with the fumes from cooking or keep the windows open. If you have a hood over your stove, that may be enough to filter out cooking particles safely.
The kitchen should also not have dirty dishes lying around for too long. Make sure to do the dishes every day and clean the sink along with the faucets: the less food debris, the less chance of mold. If any food has to be thrown away, ensure it’s in a covered garbage can.
The bathroom should also have an exhaust fan to minimize moisture. The bathroom floors shouldn’t have carpeting, and any rugs used should be washable.
Likewise, the walls shouldn’t be papered since this could contribute to mold. Enamel paint that’s mold-resistant is the best option.
What gets rid of allergies fast?
While many precautions can be taken to reduce contact with allergy-causing allergens, it is important to get rid of them quickly once the allergies kick in. In addition, there are a lot of non-prescription medicines that can ease allergies.
- Decongestants – Oral decongestants like pseudoephedrine can help with nasal stuffiness temporarily. Nasal sprays like Afrin and Neo-Synephrine can also be used for a few days. However, avoid using it for a longer duration as it may worsen the symptoms.
- Nasal sprays – like Cromolyn sodium- can ease allergy symptoms if used before the symptoms start showing. In addition, these sprays do not have any serious side effects.
- Medicines – Taking antihistamine along with any decongestant can also improve allergy symptoms. Antihistamine helps with common symptoms like itching, watery eyes, runny nose, and sneezing. General medicines include cetirizine, Allegra, loratadine.
Does vacuuming help with allergies?
Vacuuming with the right product and filter can severely impact allergies. A clean home with no room for dust mites, mold, or pollen is a dream come true for people allergic to them.
Vacuuming isn’t magic; hence vacuuming once or twice will pay for the efforts you make. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter so that the allergens, which are extremely small in size, do not escape the vacuum from the other end.
Some vacuums can spread dust and allergens in the air, so picking the right vacuum also plays an important role.
Does carpet cleaning reduce allergens?
Allergens are small sticky particles that don’t leave the house easily. So instead, they find a place to live in those corners where we least expect them.
Carpets are the favorite place for these allergens, as cleaning them is often overlooked. Unfortunately, regular brushing of the carpet does not guarantee a clean carpet.
Washing them in hot water or vacuuming them regularly is the only way to remove allergens and kill dust mites. In addition, a clean carpet improves the air quality in-house and reduces allergens.
Allergies may be a part of your life, but there’s no reason they should be allowed free reign over it. Besides the tips discussed above, you can do much more to allergy-proof your home as much as possible.
A little care and firmness, such as not allowing any smoking in the house, would make your indoor air much cleaner and healthier.