Guest post by Abby Snyder ~
Pet dander is a common culprit for many allergy symptoms, but for those of us with allergies; it's certainly not always the cause. I blamed my constant stuffiness on my dog's dander for years - only to realize it was actually my apartment that was setting off my sneezes. Looking back I realize the allergens were everywhere - floating in the air, stuck the carpet, or hiding behind every bookshelf - and I wasn't doing a thing about it
After moving to a new place and following some simple cleaning tips, both my dog and I are enjoying cleaner, allergen-free air. Some good recommendations include taking as many of the following steps as possible to eliminate allergens to your home:
Establish a weekly cleaning routine. This includes a complete clean of floors, doors, sheets, furniture, windowsills and window frames. If it can collect dust or potentially grow mold, it should be cleaned. Changing or cleaning your heating and cooling filters is also recommended to improve your indoor air quality.
Watch your temperature and humidity. Keeping the temperature of your home at 70 F (21 C) and a relative humidity of no higher than 50% will prevent dust mites and mold from growing. Dehumidifiers and air purification systems can also help ensure clean, dry circulating air.
Eliminate mold. Keeping warm air out and dehumidifiers and air conditioners on helps keep your air fresh and also prevents mold from growing. To rid your home of mold, any non-washable materials, such as carpeting, need to be disposed of. Washable materials can be washed with a 5% chlorine bleach solution.
Exterminate pests. Not only are pests kind of creepy and unwelcome in our homes, they can also leave behind an allergy triggering residue. These residues can be removed by thoroughly vacuuming your carpets and washing hard surfaces. Infestation problems can be controlled with inexpensive traps, home bug sprays, or calling an exterminator for severe cases.
Don't smoke inside. Polluted air doesn't necessarily cause allergies, but it does irritate the nose and lungs. This can increase the likely-hood of suffering from allergy symptoms.
These may seem like a lot of work if you've never done them before, but I can assure you that the relief my dog has experienced from my beginning this regimen has been stunning. Remember, our pets usually depend on us to figure out what's ailing them, and I'm happiest when I know my dog is happy and not suffering. Oh, and my own relief from allergies is the extra bonus!
Abby Snyder has loved dogs ever since received her first pooch kiss as a baby. She writes for furnacecompare.com on how homeowners can save money on their heating and cooling bills. FurnaceCompare.com provides comprehensive, unbiased data and consumer product information on air conditioners, boilers, furnaces and heat pumps.