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Monday, April 25 2011

Allergy Season Is Here

If you live in the Sacramento Valley Area, and you are an allergy sufferer, you have no doubt noticed an increase in your sinus allergies. Even though our weather has been cooler than normal the plants are still blossoming, trees leafing, and the grass is growing tall and green - all signs that allergy season is well under way, and so are your allergy symptoms.

As a fellow allergy sufferer I can sympathize with you and what you are currently experiencing. According to my doctor I am allergic to just about every thing in Sacramento that is colored green. According to my test results I am also allergic cat dander, bird dander, and mold. At this time of the year I can become wheezy, have red itchy eyes, nasal congestion, sinus headaches, and a tickle in my throat that makes me sometimes sound like a frog. I use to take (4) different prescription drugs to manage my allergy symptoms. I did not like the drugs because they caused other problems and they were a temporary fix at best. Let me share with you some cleaning tips that I believe will help you this allergy season:

1). Change the return air filter in your home. This filter which is usually located in the cieling and is next to the furnace in your attic. As air circulates through the entire house via the air conditioning/ heating ducts the air will eventually flow through this filter. Replace it every three months, or sooner, and clean the grate. You may be surprised how this one idea will help with the air quality in your home.

2). Slowly vacuum your home using a HEPA filtration system. HEPA filtration systems will trap particles as small as .3 microns. This is smaller than dust mites and their feces. Go over your carpets using the HEPA filtration system at least (3) times in one week. You will be amazed at how much 'stuff' comes out of your carpets. Don't forget to vacuum your upholstery.

3). Wipe down baseboards using a terry cloth towel and warm water. The small ledges of the baseboards are great dust collectors that you will eventually breath. This dust is a combination of bacteria particles, dust mites, dust mite feces, dander, dead skin cells, hair, etc.

4). Wipe down your ceiling fans. On the top of your blades is one serious layer of dust. These blades need to be cleaned once a month at least. The same stuff you would find in your baseboards is found in your ceiling fan blades only thicker. Can you say YUCK!

5). Wipe down your showers, vanities, and kitchen counter tops with hydrogen peroxide. 3% hydrogen peroxide will kill harmful anaerobic bacteria. You will notice that when applied it will fizzle. This is the oxygen destroying the harmful bacteria. Because hydrogen peroxide is slightly acidic you DO NOT want to use it on natural stone. The acid can & will eat the stone. There is no need to dilute it hydrogen peroxide because it is already diluted with distilled water. Pour it on to a sponge and wipe.

6). If you think about it for just a moment we spend 1/3 of our lives in one location - the bedroom. There are more dust mites and dust mite feces in your mattress and your pillow than in the rest of the house. Try this - go to a mattress store and attempt to lift a mattress that best resembles the one that you sleep on, then try to lift yours at home. You will notice that the mattress at home is much heavier. The weight is from the dust mites and the dust mite feces that has collected in your mattress over the years. This is where you want to hire a professional cleaning company who has the special tools for cleaning mattresses and pillows. A qualified cleaner can extract up 90% of the stuff in your mattress.

7). Have you carpets cleaned by a professional cleaning company that uses green products, offers above average drying times, and is someone with excellent references. A good carpet cleaning will leave your home not looking, feeling, and smelling fresh but it will be a healthier environment for you and your family.

If you have any tips that we can add to this list or if you have questions please contact me at paddle@frontiernet.net. I would love to hear from you.

Until Next Time,

Michael Hull

Posted by: Michael Hull AT 12:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
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