Cleaning & Organizing
It’s almost time for spring cleaning! Make sure to hit these notorious trouble spots in order to protect your health.
Your dirty bed sheets
There’s something delicious about falling into a cozy bed after a long day, but the icky details about dust mites dwelling in your bed sheets may leave you opting for the couch instead. According to refinery29.com, the average person sheds roughly half an ounce of dead skin every week, which stays in your sheets and becomes prime feeding material for dust mites. The fecal matter and other debris they leave behind can lead to some scary effects, exacerbating eczema, seasonal allergies, skin irritations, and more. To keep these critters out of your snooze space, be sure to wash your bed sheets in 60-degree water at least once a week.
Contaminated heating and cooling vents
If all of a sudden you begin feeling extra allergenic or sick for no apparent reason, contaminated heating and cool ducts may be to blame. The Environmental Protection Agency explains that a little bit of dust in these pipes is normal and largely harmless, but in some cases mold and other debris can build up, wreaking havoc on your health. Experts are still trying to determine whether or not cleaning the ducts prevents these health problems, but the majority agree that removing mold and other toxins from pipes that have become highly contaminated is a smart move. Here are 11 more subtle ways your house might be making you sick.
Your old vacuum
You probably consider your vacuum to be a staple cleaning tool in your home, but as it turns out, it may be doing more harm than good. A study published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology tested 21 different vacuums—varying in brand, price, and age—and found that every single one released some dust, bacteria, and allergies into the air. This pollution was much more severe with older vacuums, and those that were not equipped with appropriate filters. The best way to prevent dirt and dust from flying back into your indoor air is to buy a vacuum equipped with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter, and clean it regularly. If you live near a source of air pollution, such as an airport, a factory, or a busy highway, consider using an indoor air purifier, such as the Rowenta Intense Pure Air, to filter out chemicals as well as pollen that could otherwise trigger symptoms for people with allergies, asthma, and conditions like COPD.