To avoid pollen and other outdoor allergens, we commonly retreat into the safety of our homes. But what should we do when met with pesky indoor allergens? To help you manage indoor allergies, Chai Urgent Care explains some of the most common indoor allergens and the strategies that provide the most effective indoor allergy protection.
What Are Indoor Allergens?
The word allergen refers to anything that causes an allergic reaction. Indoor allergens are allergy-causing substances that are typically found indoors. There are many common indoor allergens, such as:
- Household dust
- Mold spores
- Dust mites
- Pet dander
Allergies cause different responses in all of us, ranging from itchiness and sneezing to a runny or stuffed nose. Immune responses also range in severity from person to person. While everyone is affected differently, the discomfort associated with indoor allergens is universal. To maximize your indoor allergy protection, try a few of these suggestions to allergy-proof your home.
Indoor Allergy Protection Strategies
Dust mite control
Did you know that microscopic arachnids, called dust mites, live deep in our home carpeting, upholstery, and mattresses? These creatures don’t bite, spread diseases, or live on humans. However, they do cause allergic responses, making it important to eliminate them as best as you can.
Bare walls and floors are the best options for dust-mite prevention, but installing low-pile carpets or washable throw rugs can help as well. Replacing heavy drapes with roll-down shades and washable curtains offers another simple safety measure. Finally, keep bedding as clean as possible. Use zippered, allergen-resistant covers on mattresses, pillows, and box springs to keep mites from penetrating soft, inviting spots. Regularly washing bedding and children’s stuffed animals at 138°F or higher and drying them on the hottest cycle available will help kill off any surviving mites and reduce your allergy symptoms.
Vacuuming your home once or twice a week is a quick, easy way to keep pet dander and other indoor allergen levels low. However, be cautious about the type of vacuum you use, as lower-quality devices can spread more dust into the air. Be on the lookout for vacuums that are certified asthma & allergy friendly®. These tools have been tested and found to prevent allergens from cycling back into the air, so you can be confident that your efforts are working.
Prevent mold spores
Mold is one of the most troublesome indoor allergens. Thriving in moist areas, you can commonly find it growing in bathrooms, kitchens, and other areas where water is used. You can implement several strategies to reduce mold growth, including:
- Fix leaks as soon as you notice them
- Use dehumidifiers and humidity monitors
- Limit the number of plants in your house
- Don’t run showers for long periods before bathing
Finally, if you see mold, clean it immediately with a bleach and water solution and continue weekly sanitization to prevent its return. We recommend wearing a mask while you do this to limit exposure.
Allergy Treatment at Chai Urgent Care
Even as you boost indoor allergy protection, indoor allergens can still take their toll. If you’re experiencing discomfort, visit your nearest Chai Urgent Care location to receive treatment that will have you feeling better soon. Our experienced team of medical professionals offers an array of services, including treatment for asthma, allergies, and allergic reactions. With short wait times, flexible hours, and acceptance of all insurances, Chai Urgent Care provides the convenient allergy care you deserve.