Regardless of how clean your home is, chances are it will contain some of the more common household allergens. And for some people, exposure to these allergens may cause an allergic reaction.
Although often minor, it’s important to try to understand the cause of any allergic reaction so that you can take steps to prevent it in the future.
Here are some of the more common allergens found in UK homes:
House Dust Mites
House dust mites are one of the most common allergens found in UK homes. They are tiny insects often found on carpets, upholstery, bedding and clothing.
The NHS website provides useful advice for reducing house dust mites in the home, including regular cleaning, using allergy-proof covers on mattresses, duvets and pillows, and using a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
In 2021 it is estimated that 17m (59% of) households have a pet. Whilst we love having them around, did you know that their saliva, urine and dander are common forms of allergen?
The NHS website provides the following advice for reducing pet allergens around the home, including regular washing of pets, keeping them out of bedrooms, and keeping them outside as much as possible.
Mould is a form of fungus that flourishes in damp environments and helps to decompose dead organic material. It is a common form of household allergen.
To reduce this allergen, the NHS recommends keeping your home dry and well ventilated, dealing with any damp and condensation, and not drying clothes indoors.
Hay fever is caused when trees and grasses release pollen into the air. Different plants pollenate at different times, so whilst hay fever seems more common in the summer months, it can occur throughout the year.
The NHS website makes the following recommendations for reducing pollen in the home, including keeping doors and windows shut and asking others to cut grassy areas for you.
Allergy UK recommends regular vacuuming as one way to help manage allergens around home, stating “use a vacuum cleaner that has high ‘HEPA’ filtration and does not allow any of the allergen to escape from the exhaust.”
Posted by David Baird