Carpeting has numerous benefits: it is durable, versatile, comfortable, and can match any décor. As the weather becomes colder, Ottawans spend more time indoors and appreciate the soft, warm feel of carpeting on their feet. Unfortunately, that time indoors can cause discomfort for people with dust and mold allergies.
It is a common misconception that people with allergies should avoid carpeting. In fact, several scientific studies have concluded that carpet fibers trap allergens, removing them from the air we breathe. There are a number of ways to effectively remove allergen particles from your carpet once they land, including vacuuming, steam cleaning, and focusing on the most important areas.
Vacuum your carpet very regularly. Depending on the space, it is recommended that you vacuum at least weekly. When purchasing a new vacuum cleaner, ensure that it is equipped with a high-efficiency particulate resistance (HEPA) filter, which captures dust mites and pollen. Otherwise, vacuumed dust may be released back into the air. It is important to regularly change your HEPA filter as they become less effective with use.
Have your carpets steam cleaned at least every year. Steam cleaning has the additional benefit of extending the life of your carpet. Many home improvement stores offer easy-to-use rental machines for the DIYer. If you want the most thorough cleaning possible, consider hiring a professional.
Where to Focus
You should focus your efforts on the rooms you use the most, namely the bedroom. We spend, on average, a third of our lives asleep. For many, allergy symptoms are worst in the morning and improve throughout the day because of the air in their bedrooms. Regular cleaning of sheets, surfaces (including window blinds), and carpeting can significantly mitigate the suffering. If you have pets, be sure to clean the places where they spend the most time.
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