Dusting and hay fever
Did your Grandmother ever tell you a feather duster doesn’t really clean, it just “moves the dust around the house”. Turns out, she was right! If your hay fever is triggered by dust or other airborne allergens (and that’s approximately 40% of Australians who experience hay fever) you might want to listen up to her sage advice.
Feather or wool dusters appear to “clean” away dust, but don’t always actually collect or remove it. Depending on the airflow within your home, once dust particles are on the move inside your home they can remain airborne for hours!
With some States in Australia currently experiencing an extremely high pollen index, you might be well advised to get busy indoors to avoid the hay fever triggers outside. Here’s some household tips to help you keep a healthier home (and would do your grandma proud!)
The big dust up
Particularly for those who experience hay fever, when cleaning it’s always best to use a damp cloth to collect and remove dust from surfaces. Some estimates have one gram of dust containing as many as 20,000 dust mites!! It’s not just the dust you can see that’s the problem; often it’s the dust you can’t see (and sometimes the most difficult to access) that may be triggering your hay fever.
Sneaky dust traps
So where should you be checking for those sneaky dust traps? Flat surfaces on top of cupboards (often the ones out of sight), the tops of door frames, the tops of air conditioner units, the top of the bed head frames, the globe inside your bedside light, the top of the bookshelf unit in the study – these are all areas that could be accumulating a layer of eye-watering, nose itching, sneeze inducing hay fever.
But take care before you scale new heights to eliminate dust build up! Ideally, have a dust buddy to help hold the ladder and maybe even take turns dusting those out of the way places.
Vacuum, vacuum and vacuum
At least once a week, give your whole home a good vacuum and don’t forget under the beds and other furniture. Ideally, use a vacuum with an in-built HEPA filter to significantly reduce the number of dust and allergen particles returned to the room. Steam cleaning your whole home at least once a year may also help reduce the accumulation of dust mites.
Consider a dust mask
There are a range of disposable or reusable dust masks on the market. Have a look in your local hardware store next time you’re there. Make a new season fashion statement and step outside your home into the garden wearing your mask to do a bit of sweeping and tidying up out there too.
Wash ‘n’ go
The idea of using saline to clean your nose out has been around years before your grandma, so if you’re sneezing and snotty from doing all that dusting, try a preservative-free isotonic nasal saline like Flo Saline Plus to help wash away that dust or dander. If you need a more thorough cleanse try Flo Sinus Care.
Thanks Grandma. We owe you yet again.