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There was once a time when I didn’t even think about allergens in my home. Of course, spring would come and I’d deal with seasonal allergies, but that all had to do with the great outdoors so I didn’t think about inside my home. Then I had baby number two and things started changing. He was my eczema baby. It’s amazing how quickly dealing with eczema can make you look into every single thing in your home!
The eczema made me look into cleaning products and personal products which can be sources of allergens whether that manifests in the form of topical or respiratory issues. However, looking into allergen proofing my home still wasn’t really on my radar in terms of air quality until just recently.
It started out with us living in a home that dealt with mold. The house was gross and was what I consider the beginning of many of my family’s respiratory issues. Until that house, my oldest child was really healthy. After living in that house, he know has allergies and a never ending cough. It’s a horrible thing to deal with. We have since moved from that house and we are slowly making progress in helping my family (particularly my oldest child) heal from such awful indoor air.
While I would never wish eczema or mold issues on anyone and I’d certainly never choose to deal with them, they did bring my family the blessing of learning about air quality and ways to allergen proof our home. There are many many different ways to help remove allergens from your home. I’m sharing a few of those today and I encourage you to look into using at least a few of them. Even if you aren’t noticeably suffering from allergens in your home that doesn’t mean your body wouldn’t appreciate cleaner air.[Tweet “In fact, indoor air can be 2-5 times worse than the air outside of our homes!”]
7 Ways You Can Allergen Proof Your Home
Remove Allergen Sources
This one is pretty logical; if you have allergens in the home then it’s time to remove them. Some are obvious like not bringing flowers that you are allergic to, but others are not on the average person’s radar like perfume, laundry soap, or dryer sheets. Anything that has no so natural chemicals in it is a possible allergen contributor, particularly things with fragrance. Don’t worry there are plenty of great alternatives so you don’t have to go without if you don’t want to! Wool dryer balls are a great replacement for dryer sheets, you can make great smelling laundry soap without the fake fragrance, and of course you can easily make your own perfume!
This is one of my newest allergen removing favorites! Salt lamps are just what they sound like; they are a huge chunck of salt that has a hallowed inside for a lightbulb. When the salt warms up, it attracts contaminants and allergens to it. It’s hard to prove just how effective it’s been for my family, but at the very least, I can visabily see that there is less dust in the area where we have our salt lamp!
You have likely heard about using activated charcoal to remove toxins by way of face masks or even teeth whitening, but did you know that activated charcoal can also remove toxins from the air? It’s pretty much just a bag with charcoal in it (no, not the charcoal for barbecuing) and it cleans the air in that particular area. I bought an activated charcoal bag for my boys’ room so that they could have something cleaning their air all the time (unlike salt lamps which I’d have to turn off for bedtime). You can grab activated charcoal bags here.
I’m sure that the idea of dusting is not a new concept to anyone wanting to remove allergens from their home. However, you need to do it properly. What do I mean by properly? For starters, ditch any commercial dusting products. Those are usually full of nasty ingredients that would just fill your home with more allergens. Secondly, do not dry dust. When dusting, it’s best to “wet dust” so that you aren’t just flinging dust all over the place. I like to dust with something natural and simple like this non-toxic citrus dusting spray or even just plain old water.
Essential oils are incredibly useful and we see them in skincare products all the time and we hear about using them for making our homes smell lovely. But did you know that essential oils can help you CLEAN the air too? Whether you use diffusers, reed diffusers, sprays, or wax melts, essential oils can help clean the air of contaminants. There are actually quite a few essential oils that are amazing at cleaning indoor air but a few of my favorites are pine, tea tree, lavender, and lemon (all of which are safe for kids to be around). Reminder: it’s best to source organic &/or wild-crafted essential oils that have been sustainably-sourced. Among a few other transparent companies, we love Mountain Rose Herbs.
Using HEPA air filters in your central air system and even vacuums will go a long way to helping you remove allergens and contaminants from your indoor air. They are easy to install but you do need to remember to replace them when needed.
Cleaning the water I shower with is one I learned when I moved to a city that highly chlorinates its water. The water is very drying and if not filtered would cause dry skin, dandruff, flare up eczema. It can also cause bigger issues like asthma and other respiratory issues. Thankfully, chlorine shower filters are pretty inexpensive but you do need to remember to change them every so often. When it comes to taking baths, a great chlorine neutralizing option are these DIY chlorine-blasting bath bombs.
Even better than a shower filter is a whole house water filtration system. The one that Scratch Mommy Founder Jess uses was easy to install…YES, a DIY whole house water filtration system! Learn more about the DIY installation here and learn more about what she likes and dislikes about the filtration system here (and find out if your water is as safe as you think…you might be surprised).