Posts Tagged ‘spring allergens’

Healthy Living: Clean Your Allergens Away

Spring is here and it’s time to break out the mop, dust off the duster, get out the cleaners and get your spring cleaning underway.  Spring also brings with it a whole new host of allergens that cause sneezing, wheezing, coughing and other seasonal symptoms.  To kill two birds with one stone, here are some ways to tackle those allergen hot spots in your home while getting a jump start on your spring cleaning at the same time!








  • Avoid “bringing the outdoors inside.” If you know that you are allergic to pollen, then you will want to avoid keeping your windows open on a high pollen day.  If you spent a good deal of time outdoors, be sure to launder your clothes right away and shower and wash your hair to avoid spreading those allergens throughout your house onto your furniture and bedding.  Allergens tracked indoors can be potent enough for symptoms to last a few days
  • Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter.  HEPA or high-efficiency particulate air filters trap allergens better than normal vacuums.  You should use a vacuum with a HEPA filter at least once a week to remove allergens, if not more often.
  • Wash your bedding once a week.  Dust mites are the most common allergen that cause indoor allergy and asthma symptoms, and these mites thrive on soft surfaces.  Your mattress is your greatest exposure to these harmful allergens.  To decrease your exposure to dust mites, wash your bedding weekly in hot water (approximately 130 degrees Fahrenheit) and dry them on a hot dryer cycle.  It’s also good to encase your mattress, box springs and pillows in allergen-proof covers.
  • Clean your upholstery and drapes.  Again, because allergens cling to soft surfaces, your upholstery and drapes are also susceptible to seasonal allergens. Wash or dry clean your drapes when possible and vacuum sofas and chairs to remove any dust mites from your furniture.  You should also wash or dry clean any throw rugs you have lying around.  Whenever possible, you should use roller shades or vertical blinds as they accumulate less dust mites than drapes and other window coverings.  If you are renovating in the future, you should also avoid wall-to-wall carpeting and shoot for hardwood or tile floors instead, which are easier to clean and do not harbor allergens.

Spring is in The Air…And So Are Allergens

Now that the long, cold winter is behind us, spring is in the air… as are allergens, ragweed, pollen, and mold.  For those with seasonal allergies, spring can be quite a hard season to get through.

According to a study on, the best action for fighting your spring allergies is to avoid the plants that make your coughing, sneezing, and watery eyes worse.

But many people aren’t sure exactly what combination of allergens that are affecting them.  Here is a list of some of the most popular plants and their allergens.

  • Ragweed It is common along riverbanks and in rural areas. Almost 75 percent of people with allergies are sensitive to ragweed.
  • Mountain cedarThis tree is commonly found in mountainous regions and, causes some of the most severe allergy symptoms around.
  • Ryegrass – This grass is common in dry lawns, meadows and pastures. This, along with other grasses, is often very problematic for allergy sufferers.
  • Maple – These trees are found along streams and in woods all through the eastern United States and Canada. The maple produces potent allergens.
  • Elm Common in the wetlands, these trees will most likely aggravate your allergies.

  • Mulberry – This pretty tree can be very deceiving.  Found in woods and river valleys, it is often associated with contributing to hay fever.
  • Pecan – Although it makes many good desserts, the pollen from pecan – found in woods and orchards – is second only to ragweed as the most severe source of allergens.

  • Oak It may have less potent pollen, but it produces very large quantities of it.  Avoid the woods just for this one.
  • Pigweed/Tumbleweed This common weed is found in lawns and along roadsides, but beware that it will not do your sinuses any good.

  • Arizona cypress – Found specifically in warm climates and well-drained soil areas, this tree can contribute to pollen problems almost all year round, according to the study.
  • Mold – Allergies acting up in the spring could be because of mold levels rising with wetter, warmer air.  The study contributes various types of molds to producing significant allergy symptoms throughout the United States.

While this only touches on a few possible plants and their related allergens, every day researchers are finding more and more possible allergens that people are dealing with in their lives.

Always seek medical advice when dealing with the treatment of seasonal allergies.