7 Places in Your House That Are Making Your Allergies Worse
And how to fix them
OK, you can’t stop sneezing. Well, that tree you park under every day is a bit obvious, but what else has your allergies acting up this spring? Likely, a lot in your home. Here are a few possibilities.
Your welcome mat doesn’t catch all. Things like ragweed can get kicked around on hard surfaces in particular. Don’t just sweep--wet mop to make sure you’ve thoroughly removed surface allergens.
Sucking up everything you track in onto carpet and rugs is a must, but using a lousy filter can adversely send allergens back into the air. Invest in a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter. It’ll trap even the finest of culprits.
Obvious, sure. But beyond their own dander, a dog’s coat can attract a fair amount of pollen during a session of “go fetch.” Wipe down pets on their way back in the door to fend off outside elements.
That dramatic new dining-room color could give you a runny nose if you don’t look closely into formulations. Choose a low- or no-VOC formula. Studies have found that if you suffer from asthma or sensitivity to chemicals, exposure to these volatile organic compounds can make symptoms worse.
Steamy showers and indulgent baths can leave moisture beads on walls and ceilings, which in turn cause nose-tingling mildew. Stop it before it starts by running an overhead fan for at least 20 minutes after bathing.
Dust mites are living the dream by hanging out in your bed all day (and then stuffing you up in the evenings). You can turn down the covers in the morning to let mite-loving moisture evaporate. But you should also frequently wash sheets in hot water to annihilate mite eggs in the first place.
Rainwater in a low point on your patio (or a garden fountain you haven’t turned on for the season) can be a breeding ground for airborne mold. (Mosquitoes, too!) Be mindful of standing water and dump it out regularly--or call the landscaper to make any necessary repairs.