Summer cleaning helps reduce asthma and allergies

Summer cleaning helps reduce asthma and allergies

Summer cleaning can help reduce allergy and asthma triggers in your home, advises the National Asthma Council Australia. But it must be done with care to avoid triggering an asthma attack while dusting.

Dirt, dust, mould and other allergens tend to collect over the winter months, leading to a potentially dangerous build-up of these common asthma triggers in your home. These irritants, combined with higher humidity and hotter temperatures in summer, lead to additional risk in living spaces, particularly holiday homes.

  • Clear out the clutter. Fewer places for dust to collect mean fewer dust mites, and it also makes your home easier to keep clean.
  • If cleaning chemical fumes get up your nose, use a mask, look for chemical-free alternatives or ask someone else to help you with the cleaning.
  • Use a damp or electrostatic cloth to dust hard surfaces (including floors) - this dramatically reduces the dust in the air while cleaning.
  • Make sure mattresses and pillows are low allergy, or encased in mite-proof covers. Remove old soft toys and old soft furnishings, if possible. Soft toys can be placed in the freezer overnight to kill dust mites (although this will not remove allergens washing in temperatures above 55C is better, if possible).
  • Keep rooms dry and well-ventilated.
  • If you can see or smell mould, the cause needs to be identified and fixed and the mould needs to be removed.
  • Carpets need to be vacuumed regularly - however vacuuming increases allergens in the air for up to 20 minutes. If you have asthma, it is a good idea to ask someone else to do the vacuuming for you and wait for 20 minutes before re-entering the room.
  • Clean your curtains and blinds throughout your home.
  • Change or clean all old filters on air conditioners or air purifiers.
  • Wash bedclothes weekly in hot water (over 55C).

For more information please contact your Primary Care Support Team at practice_support@nsml.com.au or phone 9477 8700.

Summer cleaning helps reduce asthma and allergies