Breathe easy: Ways to limit dust allergies
Pollen isn’t the only danger to fill the
air as allergy season rolls around. It’s spring cleaning time and as you begin
to ruffle through all your old belongings dust stirs into the air and as you
cough and wheeze you wonder if you’re allergic to everything. You are not alone
though as dust is one of the most common indoor allergies.
Often it is not the dust itself which
sends you into an allergenic fit but the dust mites which feed off it. These
microscopic organisms can set off people’s allergic rhinitis, asthma and even
flares of eczema. Dust can accumulate over long periods of time and you never
quite know what particles are within especially for those with pets and
children. When stirred up most commonly via cleaning
Symptoms of dust allergies include but are
not limited to:
- Red, itchy and/or watery eyes
- Runny, itchy and/or stuffy nose
- Wheezing, coughing and/or a tight chest
Treating your allergies can be a difficult
process as the exact culprit of the allergy must be determined. A medical
interview will investigate your common environment often determining whether
the issue is say, pet hair or pollen. If it cannot be determined it is likely
you will undertake a skin test where the body is pricked with the likely determent
and if swelling entails, the culprit has been found. Allergies will then likely
be treated with medications including antihistamines, decongestants and nasal
steroids or via allergy shots where possible.
Protecting yourself from dust allergies:
While there are treatments for your
allergies, one of the best protective measures you can take is to manage your
surrounding environment to help yourself avoid being subject to aerial
allergens. Our top tips to protecting yourself from dust allergens include:
1. Clean your house regularly to avoid dust build up.
2. Vacuum with a dust mask on. Dust is often stirred up
into the air while cleaning.
3. Wash your linen in hot water regularly.
4. Keep the air in your house clean and dry. Invest in a
HEPA (High efficiency particulate air) filter to place in your heating and air
conditioning unit as well as a hygrometer to keep the humidity in your house
5. Avoid kapok or feather pillows and seal in a plastic
cover where possible.
6. Avoid letting pets on furniture or in bedrooms.
for wood floors instead of carpet where possible.