Airborne Allergens Avoidance Tips
Liliane Gendreau-Reid, MD, Victoria, BC
POLLEN AVOIDANCE MEASURES:
- Close windows during pollen season; use air conditioning in car.
- Remove shoes and clothing when coming indoors.
- Do not dry clothes outside during the pollen season.
- Avoid being outside in the morning if possible or on windy days.
- Use antihistamine before exposure.
- If very symptomatic when coming from outside take a shower and wash hair.
- Rinse nose with salted water many times during the day if you are exposed to pollens.
DUST MITE ELIMINATION MEASURES:
- Wash bedding in hot water once a week.
- Get new pillow once a year or cover pillow with a dust mite proof cover.*
- Get dust mite proof mattress cover.*
- Get vinyl cover for box spring.
- Keep humidity between 30-45% (get dehumidifier).
- Keep only new washable teddies on the bed.
- Keep no dust collectors in bedroom.
- Use double bag or HEPA filter on vacuum or use central vacuum.
- Remove carpets especially in patient's bedroom.
- Get vinyl or leather covered furniture in house and car.
* can be ordered through www.quorumallergy.com or 1-800-501-5115. Look for "allergen barrier" listed on the packaging and a zipper all around the cover.
PET HAIR ELIMINATION MEASURES:
- Keep pet outdoors.
- If not possible to keep pet outdoors, keep pet confined to one room. At least keep pet out of patient's bedroom.
- Wash pet once a week with Allerpet or with warm water on a cloth; a shower or going in the rain is also very good.
- Cover pillow and mattress with impermeable dust mite covers.
- Use HEPA filter in bedroom and family room, and on vacuum or use central vacuum system.
- Wipe surfaces with damp cloth
- Non-carpeted floors prevent accumulation of pet hair.
from Allergy & Asthma News, Issue 2 2006