One of the best health decisions you can make during winter is to keep yourself safe from the allergens present in your home interiors.
Though winter is usually characterized by extremely low temperatures, the cold isn’t the only thing that can get you sick. Your home might contribute to your illness, especially if it accommodates allergens.
There are many different types of allergens that can contribute to winter allergies in your home. As you’re trying to figure out what the exact causes of winter allergies are, this blog has all the information you need.
Continue reading on below to find out 7 common winter allergies and what you can do to manage them.
1. Cockroach Allergies
63 percent of homes in the U.S. have cockroach allergens, according to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). These allergens are usually in the form of shedding body parts, saliva, and feces of cockroaches. They can be kicked up in the air and cause trigger allergies and asthma.
The common cockroach allergy symptoms include persistent coughing, wheezing, sinus infection, ear infection, skin rash, and more.
If you want to find out more about cockroach allergies, consult an expert. They’ll basically conduct a test that involves applying a diluted allergen on your skin to observe the reaction.
You also need to clear your garbage containers, keep your house clean and consult an exterminator to keep the cockroaches away from your house.
Prevention should be your first line of defense against any pest invasion.
2. Dust Mite Allergies
Failing to wash your blankets and bedding can attract dust mites during the winter season. You may be tempted to pile the unwashed blankets and bedding together in pursuit for warmth.
Though these items may guarantee you warmth when you’re in your house, they make you susceptible to winter allergy symptoms. Your allergies may even get worse if you’re allergic to dust mites.
One way of keeping the dust mites away is by ensuring that your house is properly ventilated. Consider closing the doors and windows and vacuuming your house with a HEPA certified vacuum cleaner regularly to eliminate the dust mites.
Remember to also machine wash your blankets and bedding to kill the allergens.
3. Mold Allergies
Mold is more likely to grow in your residential property during the winter than the summer. Note that mold spores randomly float in the air and may get into your house through the windows or doors.
Winter allergy symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, itchy skin and running nose are likely to be as a result of mold infestation in your house. You may experience these symptoms because the mold emits spores, which can reach your nose or skin.
Consider keeping your house properly ventilated to reduce the chances of mold growth.
You should also seek a professional mold remediation service if you notice any signs of mold growth in your house. Keeping the firewood outside, having fewer plants in the house and keeping your house free of moisture can also discourage mold growth.
4. Christmas Tree Allergies
Christmas is the most anticipated and celebrated holiday during the winter season.
While it’s a great idea to buy Christmas trees for your loved ones, you need to ensure that they won’t give you any allergies.
Most Christmas trees are usually cut out from fresh pine trees. The “fresh pine” scent can trigger allergies or even worsen the health of an asthmatic individual.
Christmas trees also emit mold spores and pollen, which may trigger several winter allergy symptoms. These include coughing, sneezing, and running nose.
Getting Christmas trees cut from pine trees may not be ideal if you or a family member is allergic to the strong odors, mold spores, and pollen. Consider getting one that lacks the strong scents and pollen/spores.
5. Dander Allergies
As a pet lover or owner, you’re likely to develop dander allergies when exposed to the dead skin flakes of animals such as dogs and cats. The dander can give you mild or chronic reactions including itchy skin, running nose and headaches.
You need to thoroughly clean the spots your pet likes to sit. You should buy pet cleaning supplies that have been approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association.
You can also fight the allergens by restricting strange pets or animals from entering your house.
6. Furnace Smoke Allergies
Setting up a fireplace in your house during the winter can help you reduce your heating costs and fight the cold weather.
However, smoke from burning wood can irritate your eyes or respiratory system.
One way you can avoid furnace smoke allergies is by sitting far away from the fireplace. You should also install carbon monoxide detectors and regularly have the fireplace cleaned.
7. Wool Allergies
Keeping yourself warm during the winter should be your number one goal whether you’re indoors or outdoors. But you need to be extremely cautious with the fabric of your clothing.
Some people get skin irritation or develop allergic reactions from wearing clothes made of wool in the winter.
You can manage the allergies by getting higher-grade wool clothes, avoiding wool garments or choosing safer fabrics such as cotton.
Managing Winter Allergies: What’s the Bottom Line?
Allergies in winter basically occur due to the cold and harsh weather. You and your loved ones are at a higher risk of developing winter allergy symptoms if you spend most of your time in the house.
Note that spending time indoors increases the time you’re exposed to the winter allergens.
As you try getting rid of any allergens that may be present in your home, you need to seek professional help to know your winter allergies. Once you’re aware of your allergies, you can discuss your treatment options with your allergist.
Most people with untreated allergies don’t know just how relieved they’ll be after getting diagnosed and treated.
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