Dealing with allergies has come a long way over the years, but still those unbearable symptoms plague many people day and night. Our homes should be a safe haven from the allergen triggers that cause our sneezing, runny noses, and watery eyes. Yet, many times, they do just the opposite.
The EPA has noted the air inside our homes is often 10 times more polluted than the air outside. This surprising fact is serious stuff, particularly if you suffer from allergies. Taking control of the quality of the air you breathe is the first step to becoming symptom-free. The number one recommended investment in keeping your indoor air quality at its purest is an air purifier. Air purifiers, also known as air cleaners, have long been recommended by allergists and respiratory therapists for their abilities to minimize pollutants in your home.
In general, air purifiers clean your air in one of three ways: by collecting particles in filters (either mechanical or electronic), by creating an ionic (static) charge to attract particles onto a collection plate, or through some combination of these methods. Many air purifiers can trap both small and large particles, and their HEPA filtering systems can trap up to 99.97% of particles 0.3 microns and larger. These machines come in a variety of styles, designs, and sizes to fit your specific needs. Many are specially designed for the needs of allergy sufferers.
Air cleaners address the most common pollutants that can trigger an allergy attack.
- Pollen - Pollen is the number one allergen that causes allergic reactions. It is microscopic and can easily find its way into your home through windows and doors. It can also be tracked inside by people and pets. Air purifiers, particularly those with HEPA filters, help to remove pollen from the air before it can settle on your furniture or saturate your indoor air.
- Dust Mites - Dust mites thrive in most homes, particularly in mattresses and upholstered furniture, where they readily find the two things they need to survive: food (you dead skin cells) and water (you perspiration). It is the waste products of these tiny bugs that trigger your allergic reactions. The feces of these parasites can be found on a variety of household surfaces as well as simply floating around in the air. Reducing the number of dust mites in your home is the key to reducing this airborne pollutant. An air purifier can target the dust mites and dust mite particles moving around in your indoor air. A properly sized air purifier with a HEPA filter can make all the difference in getting a good night's sleep in your bedroom or simply breathing easy whereever you are in your home.
- Pet Dander - Air purifiers are very effective in eliminating dander and fur from the air. Having much less pet dander floating through your air will significantly reduce the chronic sneezing and wheezing associated with cat, dog, and other pet allergies. Other steps that are wise to take when dealing with pet allergies include keeping your pets outside as much as possible. When or if this is not possible, try to limit them to specific areas of the house—preferably areas without carpet or upholstered furniture. In addition, keep your pets out of bedrooms or at least off beds, so that you and your family can sleep more easily and have the best chance of being allergen-free.
- Smoke - There should be no smoking in the home of someone with allergies. It is important to ask family members and friends to smoke outdoors. If a smoke-free home is not possible, try to contain the smoking to one room of the house. Eliminate carpet, drapes and other smoke-catching items in the room. Furthermore, investing in an smoke air purifier and other gases is an important step to reducing allergy symptoms caused by smoke. These specialized air cleaners can also eliminate the particles and odors stemming from cooking smoke and fireplace soot.
- Mold - Mold grows very easily in moist, dark places, and the tiny spores of mold can easily float through the air and be inhaled. For allergy-sufferers, it is important to live in a mold-free environment. An air purifier can help to ensure that those parasitic organisms don't cause an allergy attack. Air purifiers in conjunction with a dehumidifier (often times used in basements or other high-humidity areas) are the ideal force against the growth of mold in your home.
- Formaldehyde - Formaldehyde is widely used in many household products from air fresheners to paint, and this is a big problem for allergy-sufferers. However, there is a whole line of air purifiers that combat Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs, such as formaldehyde and ammonia). Because there are so many household products that can emit irritating odors and fumes, these air purifiers are one way to be sure that you will be protected from irritating odors and gases in your home.
It's difficult to completely get away from chemicals in our homes, but minimizing their numbers by using a dry vapor steam cleaner instead of household chemical cleaners is a wise choice to help keep your allergy symptoms under control. And, if you do have to use chemicals, such as floor polishes or paints, take proper precautions by properly ventilating and wearing a mask over your mouth and nose.
Choosing the right air purifier can be a bit confusing at first. For more information on getting started on your investment search, read our Air Purifier Buyer's Guide. We know that being allergy-free means a better quality of life, and at Sylvane.com we strive to create healthy–and happy–indoor environments.
Still Got Questions?
For more information on specific products and ways to improve your indoor environment, review our extensive product listings and other educational materials. Not sure what's best for you? We can take the guess work out of decision-making. Contact our product experts toll free at 1 (800) 934-9194 for a detailed consultation. Our goal is to make your indoor environment healthy and comfortable.
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