Press Release: Indoor Allergy Week - It's not something to sneeze at!

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As winter sets in and we spend more time indoors, it is important to make sure we are as allergy-free as possible. National Indoor Allergy Week Inddor Allergy Weektakes place from 12-18 November 2012 and aims to highlight the things we can do to avoid household triggers to various allergies.

Did you know the average family of four sheds up to 3lbs of skin per year? Most of this ends up trapped in the carpet fibres along with food debris, pollen, dust mite droppings and all the other nasties that vacuuming alone can never remove.

A recent survey by Rug Doctor has revealed that despite a carpet’s high exposure to dirt and germs, more than four in ten (44%) allergy sufferers have never deep cleaned their carpets and a third (33%) vacuum only once a week, which is dramatically less when compared to other flooring areas - 20% clean their kitchen floor up to four times a week, 44% clean the bathroom floor once a week.

It also revealed that only 26% of allergy sufferers remove their shoes when entering a home and more than half (52%) never ask guests to remove their footwear. 

Allergies can strike anywhere, and are becoming increasingly common in the UK, with 1 in 4 people suffering at some point in their lives. Here are some tips to make sure your home remains an allergen-free sanctuary.

1)   Get the HEPA Filter Vacuum Cleaner out

One particular pest is the house dust mite, which can affect air quality indoors and cause side effects such as congestion, shortness of breath, itchy eyes, poor sleeping and headaches.  So, get your HEPA filter fitted vacuum out to clean the surface allergen laden dust! The HEPA filter traps the fine particles in the dust which trigger allergy and asthma symptoms.

2)   Avoid your trigger

The simplest and sometimes most difficult way to control an allergy is to avoid the thing you are allergic to – your trigger.  However, some things are hard to avoid like pollen and dust mite droppings but you can try to prevent it by specifically targeting them and keeping everything spotlessly clean. 

3)   Deep clean those carpets

Our carpets act like filters, trapping large amounts of allergens, including pollen, pet hair, flakes of shed skin, mould and dust mite droppings.  While vacuum cleaning with a HEPA filter equipped machine is useful in not recirculating allergens into the air, it can never remove them completely. The best solution is to deep clean your carpets at least a couple of times a year using a Rug Doctor. The Rug Doctor injects cleaning solution deep into the carpet fibres, then agitates each side of the pile to loosen the dirt and trapped allergens and then powerfully extracts the dirty solution leaving the carpet virtually dry.

It’s worth knowing that the Rug Doctor's upholstery attachment supplied as part of the machine rental can also be used on mattresses and fabric car interiors. 

Nothing refreshes a room more than a deep cleaned carpet, and renting a wet extraction carpet cleaner like the Rug Doctor can have your carpets looking, feeling and smelling as good as new in no time and at a fraction of the price of a professional carpet cleaner.

4)   Wash those sheets and duvets!

Clean bedding has fewer allergens in, so washing it regularly can also help you sleep. This is especially important if you are allergic to dust mite droppings - these tiny insects feed on shed skin in our mattresses, pillows, carpets and upholstery.

Allergens produced by the mite droppings are one of the most common causes of asthma attacks. Washing at higher temperatures and drying sheets in strong sunlight helps.

5)   Banish clutter

If your home is untidy, there are more places in which allergens can be trapped.  Tidying up can improve your allergies, but be careful – but if you disturb a lot of dust while you tidy, you might make things worse.  This is especially true in homes with hardwood floors. It might be a good idea to get a non-allergic family member to help.  Soft toys are a particular collector of dust, so store them in a cupboard box or just have one of them out at a time.