Steps to Take to Lessen Allergen Exposure at Home
Without a doubt, there are certain seasons that trigger allergies more than others.
Spring, of course, with all the flowers in full bloom.
And, fall, when ragweed seems to be just about everywhere.
Many allergy sufferers look forward to winter when fall’s pollen has cleared out.
But for some, winter can be just as bad as spring and fall for allergies… ushering in more pain, congestion and downright misery.
First, you’re probably spending more time indoors, in homes sealed up to keep cold weather out.
What also gets sealed in with you?
Allergens… dust mites, mold and pet dander.
Dust mites are everywhere. On your pillows, mattress, box spring and carpeting.
And if you’re running a humidifier at more than 50% humidity to add moisture to your home’s dry winter air, you could be making dust mites grow faster.
Decaying leaves and other yard waste are ideal breeding grounds for mold and mildew.
And each time you come in from the outside, you drag that mold and mildew with you, on your shoes and clothes.
More time spent indoors also means less time your dog gets outside.
That means you have much more direct exposure to their dander than you do during the warmer months.
So, you have more dust mites, more mold, and more pet dander circulating in the air around you, triggering your allergies.
And if you use an electric space heater, all those allergens may end up getting blown right in your face and into your sinuses.
Think a fireplace is a better option to keeping you warm and toasty? Think again.
You see, while a wood-burning fireplace can be mighty cozy when the temps drop, it can also emit fumes that irritate your nasal passages.
Plus, if you store your firewood outside, it can become a haven for mold spores.
Once that wood comes inside, it can result in sneezing, coughing and a host of other allergy symptoms.
But it’s not just the additional allergy exposure that leads to sinus misery in wintertime.
As the temperature drops, and cold dry air sets in, your sinuses begin to lose the vital moisture they need to keep you breathing freely and comfortably.
Dried out nasal passages can also trigger head pounding sinus pain and an annoying, persistent dry cough.
To help battle winter allergy woes, be sure you’re drinking plenty of water to help replenish the moisture lost from the cold, dry air.
You also want to make sure you keep up with the laundry, and regularly clean the carpets and bed linens in your home, to limit the dust and dirt circulating in the air.
Scrub bathrooms and kitchens that are prone to mold and mildew growth with a beach solution.
And bathe your pets once a week… and brush them outside… to minimize dander.
These days, we’re not only staying in because of the colder weather, we’re staying in to be safe.
Take steps to lessen allergen exposure at home, so that your safe haven, doesn’t become a sick one.
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