Indoor allergies are a typical condition for millions of people. Indoor air quality (IAQ) is a crucial part of reducing symptoms of your allergies and creating a healthy, comfortable living environment. Here, you’ll learn useful strategies on how to improve IAQ for indoor allergy relief.
Understanding Indoor Allergies
Inside allergens include dust mites, pet dander, mold spores, tobacco smoke, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), bacteria and viruses, as well as pollen that makes its way inside the house. These allergens cause allergic reactions. When allergens are present in the air, they can result in symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes and more severe issues including asthma attacks and other breathing difficulties. Ventilation, air filtration, cleaning and other proactive measures are needed to minimize the amount of indoor allergens, improve indoor air quality and allow inhabitants to breathe easier.
Reducing Allergens Through Proper Ventilation
One of the best techniques to reduce allergens is to enhance ventilation. Proper inflow of fresh, outdoor air considerably decreases the quantity of allergens in your home. Here are some ventilation-increasing steps to try:
- Open windows and doors when the weather allows.
- Run exhaust fans in the bathroom and kitchen when showering or cooking to clear away heat, humidity and fumes.
- Purchase a whole-home ventilation system to evenly exchange stagnant indoor air with clean outdoor air throughout the entire house.
Air Filtration and Purification Systems
Air filters and purifiers come in numerous different styles. Some are created to clean the air in one room, while others work with the HVAC system for healthier air throughout the entire home. They also eliminate allergens using a variety of techniques:
- Filtration systems—including media filters, electrostatic filters and high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters—capture airborne particles in tightly woven material, preventing them from circulating around the house.
- Germicidal UV lights deactivate the DNA of bacteria, viruses and other microbes, rendering them unable to reproduce and reducing the circulation of germs throughout your home.
- Air purifiers with activated carbon filters remove odors and chemicals from the air, resulting in a clean, fresh-smelling house.
- Electronic air cleaners contain negative ion generators that bind with positively charged airborne particles. The particles then cling to charged metal plates or are too heavy to remain airborne. Those that fall onto household surfaces can be eliminated by dusting and vacuuming.
Keeping your home clean is an essential step in decreasing home allergens. Here are some recommended tips:
- Vacuum your home at least once per week using a vacuum cleaner equipped with a HEPA filter to remove dust mites and other irritants from carpets and upholstery.
- Choose hypoallergenic bedding, such as organic cotton, bamboo or silk, which is naturally allergen-resistant.
- Wash your bedding weekly in hot water to destroy dust mites and clean out other lingering allergens.
- Choose allergy-proof pillowcases and mattress covers to prevent dust mites from accumulating.
- Clean countertops, floors, furniture and other hard surfaces regularly.
- Keep pets out of your bedroom to reduce dander buildup in the area where you sleep.
- Limit clutter and knickknacks, which collect dust and provide hiding places for allergens.
Controlling Humidity Levels
Maintaining the correct humidity level is fundamental for controlling indoor allergens. High humidity supports mold growth and dust mite populations, while low humidity contributes to dry skin and inflamed airways. The goal should be to achieve an indoor relative humidity level between 30-50 percent. The quickest way to do this is to operate a whole-house humidifier in the dry winter and a whole-house dehumidifier throughout the humid summer.
Indoor Plants and Allergies
Indoor plants can improve IAQ by filtering out toxins and discharging oxygen. However, some plants produce irritating pollen, and giving them too much water may encourage mold growth, aggravating indoor allergies. When selecting potted plants, opt for allergy-friendly species like spider plants, snake plants and bamboo palms, which help improve indoor air quality and are not as likely to cause allergic reactions.
Indoor Air Quality Solutions in North America
Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning is committed to helping our customers enjoy a healthy and comfortable home environment. With our expertise in indoor air quality solutions and your satisfaction guaranteed, we are a great partner to fulfill all your IAQ desires. Contact a Service Experts office near you today to learn more about how our services can help you achieve indoor allergy relief.