Indoor allergies are a typical challenge for millions of people. Indoor air quality (IAQ) is a critical part of reducing symptoms of your allergies and being able to reside in a healthy, comfortable living environment. Here, you’ll learn useful information on how to improve IAQ for indoor allergy relief.
Understanding Indoor Allergies
Household 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. These particles cause allergic reactions. When allergens are present in the air, they can lead to symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes and more severe issues such as asthma attacks and other breathing problems. Ventilation, air filtration, cleaning and other proactive actions are essential to reduce the amount of indoor allergens, improve indoor air quality and allow inhabitants to breathe easier.
Reducing Allergens Through Proper Ventilation
One of the best strategies to reduce allergens is to enhance ventilation. Appropriate inflow of fresh, outdoor air considerably decreases the amount of allergens in your home. Here are some ventilation-increasing techniques to try:
- Open windows and doors when the weather permits.
- Turn on exhaust fans in the bathroom and kitchen when showering or cooking to remove heat, humidity and fumes.
- Buy a whole-home ventilation system to evenly exchange stuffy indoor air with fresh outdoor air through the entire house.
Air Filtration and Purification Systems
Air filters and purifiers are made in many different styles. Some are created to clean the air in a single room, while others integrate with the HVAC system for healthier air throughout the entire house. They also remove allergens using a variety of tactics:
- 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 through the house.
- Germicidal UV lights deactivate the DNA of bacteria, viruses and other microbes, rendering them unable to replicate and reducing the spread of germs throughout your home.
- Air purifiers that use activated carbon filters get rid of odors and chemicals from the air, helping produce a clean, fresh-smelling household.
- Electronic air cleaners contain negative ion generators that bind with positively charged airborne particles. The particles then cling to charged metal plates or grow too heavy to remain airborne. Those that drop onto household surfaces can be removed by dusting and vacuuming.
Keeping your home clean is a huge step in limiting indoor allergens. Here are some suggested steps:
- Vacuum your home at least every week utilizing a vacuum cleaner that has a HEPA filter to remove dust mites and other contaminants from carpets and upholstery.
- Choose hypoallergenic bedding, such as organic cotton, bamboo or silk, which is naturally allergen-resistant.
- Wash your bedding once a week in hot water to kill dust mites and do away with other lingering allergens.
- Use allergy-proof pillowcases and mattress covers to prevent dust mites from accumulating.
- Clean countertops, floors, furniture and other hard surfaces on a regular basis.
- Keep pets out of your bedroom to reduce dander buildup in the room where you sleep.
- Limit clutter and knickknacks, which collect dust and offer hiding places for allergens.
Controlling Humidity Levels
Maintaining the recommended humidity level is imperative for controlling indoor allergens. High humidity supports mold growth and dust mite populations, while low humidity leads to dry skin and irritated airways. Shoot for an indoor relative humidity level ranging from 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 delivering oxygen. However, some plants produce irritating pollen, and watering them too often may foster mold growth, aggravating indoor allergies. When selecting potted plants, opt for allergy-friendly types like spider plants, snake plants and bamboo palms, which help raise indoor air quality and are less likely to cause allergic reactions.
Indoor Air Quality Solutions in North America
Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning is dedicated to creating a healthy and comfortable home environment for our customers. With our expertise in indoor air quality solutions and your satisfaction guaranteed, we are the perfect partner to fulfill all your IAQ requirements. Contact a Service Experts office near you today to learn more about how our services can help you attain indoor allergy relief.