Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Breathe Easy this Allergy Season

HHH note: May is Allergy & Asthma Awareness Month. According to the Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America, Atlanta ranks number 4 for America's Allergy Capitals.

(ARA) – For the millions of Americans who suffer from asthma and allergies, a dust-free home may be just what the doctor ordered. As allergy season approaches, it is a good time to put dusting on top of your cleaning checklist. Here are some tips for allergy-proofing your home from board-certified physician and author of “Allergies & Asthma for Dummies,” Dr. William E. Berger:

“House dust is one of the most prevalent – and unavoidable – allergy triggers in any home,” says Dr. Berger. “Since you can’t control the allergens outside your home, dusting is just one of the several easy steps you can take to allergy-proof the inside.”

Don’t Sleep on It

You are not the only one who loves your bed; so do dust mites. In fact, an average bed contains 2 million dust mites, which means it’s possible to breathe in significant amounts of allergens while sleeping. However, a few simple steps can be taken to ensure those mites are not sleeping in your bed.

* Cover all mattresses and pillows with zippered, dust-proof covers. Choose a material, like plastic, vinyl or fabrics, with pores too small to allow dust mites through.

* Wash bed sheets and blankets every week in hot water – at least 130 degrees F – to kill dust mites.

Don’t Sit on It

Dusting furniture alone will not eliminate dust and pet dander. Some products, such as feather dusters or dusting cloths, simply stir up dust in the air instead of eliminating the allergens within dust and pet dander.

* Use a product that contains allergen trappers. Pledge Furniture Polish removes up to 84 percent of allergens from dust mites and pet dander found in dust.

* If you have severe allergies, avoid furniture made from upholstery. Instead choose wood, plastic, vinyl or leather furniture; these materials are easier to clean than fabric.

Don’t Touch it

Certain places in the home can be a breeding ground for dust mites and pet dander. Making smart choices when picking furniture and household accessories can make a difference for allergy sufferers.

* Pet dander is more easily collected in carpeting and thick rugs. To help make allergy-proofing easier, choose bare floors over carpeting where you can use cleaning products to pick up and remove allergens from pet dander. Using a vacuum with a HEPA filter at least once a week is an alternative option.

* Allergy sufferers should avoid curtains and instead opt for shades or blinds that are easy to clean.

Go to to learn more about allergen-reducing Pledge products and for more tips on reducing allergens in your home.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

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