5 Winter Allergies to Avoid

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Winter allergies are mostly found indoors as we spend all of our time with the windows closed and heat on. Here are some tips to avoid the most common winter allergies.

Dust mites on decorations and bedding

Vacuum or damp dust ornaments and other holiday props which come out this time of year to decorate your home. Wear a mask and try to do this cleanup in the attic, basement or outdoors. Also, clean thick seasonal bedding (quilts, blankets and comforters) before putting them on your bed to reduce exposure to dust and other small particles.

Pet dander

Keep dogs, cats or other pets that have fur away from the bedrooms and family room at all times. The accumulation of dander in carpets, sofas, beds and pillows becomes more of a problem over time than the actual presence of the pet.

Christmas trees

Bringing live evergreen trees into the home is a holiday tradition, but, this could be doing more harm than good. Microscopic mold spores infiltrate the surfaces of evergreen trees but lay dormant (because of cold temperatures) until they enter the warm environment of your home. After a few days the molds come alive and invisibly fill the air of the home with spores, which can trigger asthma and allergies.

Insects in the home

In densely-populated, urban areas, cockroach droppings can be potent triggers of allergies and asthma, especially in children. Make sure to block all entry points for cockroaches to get into your home, including crevices, wall cracks and windows. Repair leaks, fix and seal leaky pipes and keep all areas dry. Keep all foods in lidded containers and vacuum and sweep floors after eating to get rid of crumbs.

Indoor laundry drying

In the winter, it may seem like a good idea to hang dry clothing indoors to remain eco-friendly. However, according to a recent study, not only does that not save energy, but it adds a health risk by increasing moisture levels. Moisture is an ideal environment for mold spores and dust mites.