Thousands of people suffer from seasonal and environmental allergies. Allergy symptoms often mimic common cold symptoms. Those who have them may experience runny noses, post-nasal drip, sneezing, coughing, sore throat, and itchy, watery eyes. Whether you take medication to treat your seasonal or environmental allergy symptoms or you simply suffer in silence and wait for them to pass, there are a few things you can do at home to make it easier to breathe. Here are five tips for improving your indoor air quality to help alleviate your allergy symptoms.
Ditch the Scented Candles
They may smell sweet, but scented candles and air fresheners can actually make your allergy symptoms even worse. These sweet-smelling home refreshers release chemicals into the air which may make it more difficult to breathe freely, especially when your nasal passages are swollen from allergies. Studies have shown that allergy sufferers who eliminated scented candles from their homes experienced some relief.
Keep Your Pets Clean
Pet dander is a common allergen. Even if you aren’t especially allergic to your dog or cat, letting dander build up in your home can cause symptom flare-ups. To keep dander under control, put your pets on a bathing schedule. Whether you choose to put them in the bathtub yourself or send them to the groomer, regular pet grooming can help improve your indoor air quality.
Dust and Vacuum Regularly
Make cleaning your home a priority to improve your health. Dust can cause allergies and make symptoms worse for those who are already suffering. If you haven’t already, consider upgrading your vacuum to a model with a HEPA filter to trap more particles as you’re vacuuming. Clean up any residual dust with a wet cloth. This is a simple step that can help you breathe more easily.
Maintain Your HVAC System
When is the last time you replaced the filters in your home heating and cooling system? If you can’t remember, it’s probably time for a change. Many homeowners choose to replace the filters themselves by purchasing new ones from a local home improvement store, while others prefer to schedule routine filter replacements and system maintenance by a professional. Regular HVAC maintenance can help you ensure that your system is working properly and circulating clean air throughout your home.
Freshen Things Up
Freshening up the air in your home with an air purifier or opening up the windows can have a big impact. Indoor air purifiers trap harmful particles such as dust, mold spores, and other allergens. They’re a relatively inexpensive way to drastically improve your home’s air quality, and they may help reduce your allergy symptoms.
If you suffer from seasonal or environmental allergies, the air quality in your home could be making your symptoms worse. To improve indoor air quality, consider removing scented candles, putting your pets on a bathing schedule, dusting and vacuuming regularly, maintaining your HVAC system, and freshening up your home with an air purifier or by opening up the windows. These simple things can help you breathe a little easier during allergy flare-ups.