Allergy season is upon us. Sometimes it may feel as though nothing can combat the itching, sneezing, hives and headaches. Cleaning can be key to keeping allergy symptoms at bay.
Tips for removing allergy triggers through cleaning:
Vacuuming of any space should happen at least 1-2 times per week to control allergens. Still, some allergens are so small, they can pass through standard vacuum filters and be released right back into the air we breathe. This is why it is important to always use vacuums equipped with HEPA filtration systems. HEPA stands for High Efficiency Particulate Air and indicates that a filter is capable of removing 99.97% of pollen, dust and other airborne particles a small as 0.3 microns. Be sure to change your vacuums HEPA filters every 6-12 months for maximum efficiency in controlling allergens. You should also give your vacuum a thorough cleaning at least once annually.
Damp Dusting vs Dry Dusting
Microfiber cloths are the best dust buster, according to Consumer Reports. Their microscopic weave can hold ten times more dirt per square inch than a standard cotton towel. Swiffer dusters are also an effective tool, by using static cling to collect dust particles, and are typically our go-to tool for dusting. Though dry dusting with these tools will pick up a good amount of dust, dampening a microfiber cloth with an all-purpose cleaner is the surest way to capture dust and the mites that feed on it.
Commercial and residential entry ways can harbor dust, pollen, vehicle exhaust and other allergens which can be tracked inside on our shoes and clothing. Sweeping or vacuuming entry ways regularly is a good way to limit the amount of allergens entering an indoor space.
Heavily Scented Cleaners
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, nearly 2.5 million Americans experience fragrance allergies. Overly fragrant cleaning products are one major cause of allergy symptoms. Our Frontline brand of products was designed with this problem in mind. The FCS line of cleaning products all have little to no scent.
The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology recommend always wearing a mask while cleaning to create a barrier between your mouth, nose and potential allergens. Gloves are also important for protecting your skin from allergens. If you are particularly sensitive to dust mites, you may want to go a step further and wear long sleeves while dusting to avoid skin irritation.
Lastly, be sure to get fresh air after cleaning. Dust and other allergens can become airborne when you clean and may take up to 2 hours to settle again. Take a break after dusting and do so somewhere outside or well ventilated, away from the area where you recently dusted.