Asthmatics and allergy sufferers must take measures to protect their lungs from pollen, dust and ragweed. Considering that it’s still wintertime, this may sound like an easy feat. However, avoiding asthma and allergy symptom triggers is a task that requires double the attention when you’re cooped up in the house. Your home is filled with allergens as well. What can asthmatics and allergy sufferers do to avoid symptom triggers while at home?
Completely eliminate the presence of cigarette smoke.
Stay clear from cigarettes at all costs. Put your friends and family members who smoke on high alert that under no circumstances is cigarette smoking permitted in your home. Make no mistake about it. Cigarettes are killers. We all know they’re cancer-causing. But for many asthma sufferers, the smoke from cigarettes is so unbearable, it feels like they’re being choked to death!
“Staying smoke and scent free is an easy way to improve the air quality in your home or workplace,” Asthma.ca reminds us, “Cigarette smoke, wood smoke, and scented products like candles, flowers, perfumes, cleaning supplies, and laundry products can all be asthma triggers. You have the power to keep these triggers out of your indoor spaces.”
Dust and clean your home regularly.
It sounds like a no-brainer to keep your home clean, but you may be surprised to know how quickly dust accumulates. Missing a week of cleaning is as good as inviting an asthma attack – depending, of course, on how severe your asthma is. As Chin Chin of Dengarden.com points out, when dust accumulates in the home, chemicals and allergens accumulate as well.
“Sweep or use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of dust on the floor and carpets at least two times a week,” she recommends, “Choose a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to make sure that the dust doesn’t get blown back from the exhaust and don’t forget to wash the filter. Mop the floor with plain water afterward to pick up the dust left behind by the vacuum or broom.”
Beware of volatile organic compounds.
Volatile organic compounds (or VOCs, for short) are found in a lot of consumer products. In addition to cigarettes, they are also found in paints, glues, cleaners, disinfectants, air fresheners and adhesives. You’ll notice that a few of the products mentioned are often used to clean and disinfect your home. In reality, such products – the ones that actually smell pretty nice – are causing more harm than good.
“Chemical fumes from products like paints, cleaners, scented cosmetics, and laundry supplies can all trigger an asthma attack or worsening of symptoms,” informs Asthma.ca, “Look for products with the asthma & allergy friendly™ certification program logo to find products that have been scientifically tested and proven to be more suitable for people with asthma and allergies.”
Have you tested your home for VOCs?
Enviro-Works Inc. proudly offers VOC Testing which employs the EPA TO-17 using GC-MS method for the determination of VOCs. This method uses active or passive sampling of air that traps the target analytes onto a multi-sorbent bed tube.
These sorbent tubes allow for fast and accurate sample collection of indoor air, fence line, stack, workplace and occupational monitoring. Laboratory processing and analysis are much quicker than cannister sampling due to far less sample preparation time. Target analytes can be customized based on your needs.