Many individuals suffer year-round from allergy symptoms triggered by indoor allergens. These allergens include animal dander, dust mites, mold and cockroaches. The immune system will identify these indoor allergens as a threat and react by producing antibodies. These antibodies release chemicals which triggers an allergic reaction.
Once these symptoms occur year-round, it is called perennial allergic rhinitis. Aside from triggering the allergy symptoms; the indoor allergens can also trigger asthma attacks among those with allergic asthma.
Dust mite allergens have been a common trigger of allergy and asthma symptoms. Even though found all over the house, these creatures thrive in humid, warm environments such as upholstered furniture, bedding and carpeting.
Since most of the time is spent in the bedroom, it is vital to reduce the level of dust mites. It is recommended to encase mattresses, pillows and box springs with allergen-proof covers or airtight plastic covers.
Bedding should be washed every week using hot water and dried using a hot dryer. There are also allergen-proof covers available for comforters and pillows that could not be washed regularly.
It is also important to keep the level of humidity low with a dehumidifier or air conditioner. If carpeting is used, it should be removed if possible.
Indoor mold and mildew require moisture to thrive specifically in bathrooms, basements or any place where water leaks. You can eliminate mold growth on hard surfaces using detergent and water and if needed, 5% bleach and allow the area to dry completely.
If mold covers an area more than 10 square feet, it is best to hire professional services. For clothing ridden with mold, wash with water and soap. In case moldy items could not be thoroughly cleaned and dried, discard them.
Remember that there is no “hypoallergenic” breeds of cats or dogs. It is not the hair that causes allergies but the allergen present in dander, saliva and urine.
The symptoms manifest within minutes. In some cases, the symptoms build up and become severe 8-12 hours after exposure. Those who have severe allergies can end up with a reaction in a public places if exposed to dander.
If an individual is diagnosed with pet allergy, he/she should consult a doctor regarding the potential for immunotherapy (allergy shots) which can often provide long-term relief.
Cockroaches are usually present in homes, schools or even commercial buildings, but they can lurk almost anywhere. Remember that having a cockroach does not mean that you have a dirty house.
In order to prevent cockroaches, you have to block areas where they can enter the house such as wall cracks, crevices and windows. Cockroaches require water to survive, thus any leaky pipes or faucets should be fixed.
Food must be stored in sealed containers and put away pet food dishes after the pets are done eating. Sweep and vacuum the floor after meals and take out garbage. Make sure that you will use sealed garbage containers in the kitchen.