If you’re like many of us, you’re ready for the beautiful weather of spring! As the warm breeze moves in, the wonderful fruits of spring arrive, including taking long walks in the neighborhood, getting a chance to see the blooming trees, and, most importantly, finally getting to leave behind those freezing-cold mornings scraping snow and ice off your windshield while shaking like a leaf.
Even though the warmth and joys of spring are definitely abundant during this time of the year, there are still some things that hold many back from truly enjoying themselves. In a word: allergies!
With watery eyes, constant runny noses, and scratchy throats, allergy season can become a pain in the neck, preventing you from experiencing spring in its fullest bloom. According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, allergy season can begin as early as February and last as late as October, granting plenty of time for those nasty allergies to creep in and set you off.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though, particularly when it comes to your home. Even when in the middle of allergy season, there are some key steps you can take to make sure you and yours can breathe easy, and make your home a true oasis from sneezing, sniffling, and watery eyes.
Here are five simple, effective ways to help cut down on allergens in your home and make it a more comfortable and healthy place, all year round:
1.) Do a Clean Sweep
One of the most important tools in any allergy sufferer’s arsenal is a powerful vacuum cleaner. In the midst of allergy season, be sure to keep up a regular vacuuming schedule, taking care of your floors a couple times a week (and perhaps more if you have pets). Be sure to get into carpeting and furniture, as these fabric-covered places are spots where allergens like pollen and dust love to build up generously.
One bonus tip? If your vacuum is old and out-of-date, it may be time for a replacement. An ineffective vacuum can serve to just blow allergens back into the air, causing you to sneeze more. Be sure to check up on the model of your vacuum and make sure it has a HEPA filter! These newer, environmentally friendly models can help remove airborne particles that make allergies worse.
2.) Mold-Proof Your Space
Throughout allergy season, you may think pollen and pet dander are the biggest culprits to watch out for, but mold can be an insidious problem that also creates large issues for allergy sufferers. Plenty of people have mold allergies, and may not even know it – until the wet weather of spring settles in, making dampness a fact of life in homes here in Chicago.
To keep mold at bay, focus on the areas that collect the most mold — the basement, bathroom, kitchens, and other indoor areas with lots of pipes and water lines. Remove mold from surfaces with a strong cleaning solution, or make your own, blending water and your favorite mild detergent. And don’t forget to take preventative measures, too. Repair leaks in pipes, windows, and fixtures, if there are any. It also helps to scrub surfaces prone to mold regularly, to avoid build up.
3.) Get Out All the Dust
Dust is rather unsightly and irritating, and with it gathering in those unsuspecting, uncared for areas (like in between blinds, on the tops of bookshelves, and all around decorative objects), it’s irritating — literally. During allergy season, dust is prone to build up and cause lots of sniffles and sneezes.
It’s beneficial to maintain a regular dusting routine, to help prevent dust and other allergen-loaded “gunk” from getting out of control. Don’t forget those hard-to-reach places, like on top of your crown molding, around ceiling fans, the surfaces of your light fixtures, and that top-shelf storage you never use.
It’s also helpful to have the right tools! We highly recommend microfiber cloths to help trap dust and dirt in the best way. Not only are they strong enough to be durable and useful for those heavily-dusted areas, they are also reusable, making them more sustainable than other options, such as paper towels. Plus, many “old school” dusters simply push the stuff around — or worse, brush it off into the air, where it’s easier for you to breathe it in! Instead, microfiber helps truly trap dirt and dust, preventing it from becoming an irritant all over again.
4.) Clean Your Bedding
Your bed and bedroom should be a calm, serene space. The last thing you want for your area of sleep is to deal with any difficulties or annoyances!
Unfortunately, bedding can be, well, a hotbed for dust mites, pollen, dander, and other allergens. For that reason, it’s important to wash your bedding regularly.
For the best results to fight allergies and keep things clean, wash your bedding weekly in hot water and dry in the hot dryer to kill dust mites.
Between washes, it also helps to vacuum any bulky duvets or comforters regularly, to help keep them free of dust, dander, and other allergens. While vacuuming the bedding, reach under the bed as well, since that area can be a breeding ground for allergen-filled dusty bunnies and other annoying messes.
5.) Care for Your Plants
If you’re as interested in keeping a clean house as you are in decorating, then you know the beauty and dimension great plants can add to your space. In the peak allergy months, however, plants can be a generous contributor to allergies – even the ones meant to help purify your air!
For one thing, this allergen season may be a good time to consider or re-think the kinds of plants you have around. Plants that flower a lot are a main contributor to carrying pollen, so getting more leafy green ones — like spider plants and peace lilies — can definitely help cut down on indoor allergens, while elevating your air quality.
Also, it may surprise you to find that plants can carry a lot of dust build up in their own right! Be sure to brush or dust them down with a bristle brush or duster, and periodically wash them sometimes with lukewarm water for a more clean (and beautiful) space.
Call In the Professionals!
Want to keep the sniffles and the dust bunnies at bay this allergy season? We know you’re busy, and sometimes tackling your spring cleaning – including cutting down all those annoying allergy triggers – can feel like a full time job.
That’s where Sweeping Dimensions Cleaning would love to step in and help! We always make a sweeping effort to make life less stressful for homeowners, renters, and property managers across the Chicago area, helping you keep a clear head, even in the heart of allergy season!
Whether you’re looking for a deep clean or some light housekeeping to help keep your allergy symptoms at bay, our professional home services can take away the stress of your cleaning responsibilities, and give you back time to really enjoy the most important things in your life.
With a professionally trained and uniformed staff, we customize your cleaning experience to fit your needs. We bring all of the cleaning supplies and equipment needed to clean your home, with a focus on green, environmentally sound cleaning products.
Curious about what we can do for your home? Want to trade allergy tips and tricks? Be sure to get in touch today for your free estimate, or to keep the clean home conversation going!