Spring Allergies Triggered By More than Just Pollen
AZ Pest Control explores the impact pests can have on allergy symptoms and offers prevention advice
The beautiful bloom of a new spring season is most likely an unpleasant experience for those suffering from allergies and asthma. And since spring tends to bring on exacerbated allergy symptoms, May is often touted as National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month. But is it pollen or something else leading you to sneeze? Arizona Pest Control and the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) are doling out advice on some of the lesser-known allergy and asthma triggers found in the home and offer tips on how to find relief.
Cockroaches are often a surprising source of allergies. Their saliva, droppings and decomposing bodies comprise allergen proteins known to trigger symptoms, especially in children. They also spread nearly 33 kinds of bacteria, according to the NPMA.
Cockroaches are one of the most common pests that incite allergy symptoms, but there are others including rodents and dust mites that can leave you itching and reaching for tissues. Allergy symptoms are only one of the many health implications posed by pests. That’s why meticulous pest prevention is so necessary—it isn’t just about preserving a home’s aesthetics.
Arizona Pest Control recommends several tips to help prevent allergies:
- Exclude pests by sealing cracks and gaps in walls and floors using a silicone-based caulk. Pay special attention to where utility pipes enter.
- Maintain the humidity level in the house at about 50 percent by properly ventilating basements and crawl spaces. Consider running a dehumidifier in these areas to prevent moisture buildup.
- Vacuum at least once a week using a vacuum with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate) filter.
- Dust hard surfaces frequently using a dust rag or damp cloth. Limit the amount of fabric items in each room since they attract airborne allergens like dust mites and pet dander.
- Clean or replace the filters in your furnace and air conditioner each month.
- Wipe surfaces daily, including counters, stovetops and sinks. Don’t leave dishes to pile up in the sink and make sure to clean crumbs and spills right away.
- Store food in airtight containers and avoid leaving pet food out for long periods of time.
- Dispose of garbage regularly in a sealed trash bin.
- Encase pillows and mattresses in allergen-proof covers to control dust mites. Avoid down pillows or comforters.
- Wash blankets, throw rugs and bedding in hot water, preferably at 130 degrees F, or take them to be dry-cleaned.