When the summer heat begins to give way to lower temperatures and the days get shorter and shorter, the onset of fall tends to make itself known seemingly overnight. It can be an exciting time of year; finishing summer vacations, getting back to school, preparing for winter. But for many people, it also signals the start of an annual battle with allergies. If stepping out the door leads to itchy eyes, a scratchy throat and constant sneezing, you can take comfort in the fact that you’re not alone—hay fever affects more than 17 million adults and over 6 million children. And while allergies may seem harmless, they can be debilitating in some cases, even leading to potentially dangerous sinus infections that can keep people out of work for weeks at a time.
Fortunately, fall allergies can usually be managed with a little bit of effort, and if you’re suffering on a daily basis, it’s worth taking the extra steps to mitigate them.
1. Dehumidify Your Home
Turning the home into an allergen-free zone should be one of the first rules to follow for those who find themselves suffering from seasonal allergies. One way to kick-start the process is by purchasing a dehumidifier. Contrary to what many people believe, dehumidifiers are actually more effective than humidifiers when it comes to improving indoor air quality for those who are particularly sensitive to dust and mold. This is a quick, relatively low-cost way to help reduce the severity of seasonal allergies, and most units last for a long time, if properly maintained.
2. Shower Often
One of the easiest ways for pollen to travel is via your skin and clothing, especially if you find yourself going outdoors in a high pollen zone. To help reduce the amount of pollen entering the house, it may be beneficial to avoid wearing outer layers into the living area of your home and shower as soon as you’ve returned from outside. It can be a bit of an extra hassle, but keeping yourself clean can play a key role in helping to keep your home’s indoor air clean, too.
3. Change Your Central AC Filter Monthly
You have your air conditioner to thank for keeping you and your family cool and comfortable throughout the summer and fall, but what if it’s actually contributing to your seasonal allergies? Central AC units pull in air from outside the home prior to conditioning it, and when operating properly, the air is filtered of any contaminants that might be present. Your AC’s air filter can become clogged over time, however, eventually reaching the point where contaminants make their way into the home. Fortunately, you can help avoid this problem simply by changing out the filter on a monthly basis.
If seasonal allergies have got you down, it’s time to take action. Take the right steps, and you can kick your allergies to the curb this fall!