When most people think of allergy season, it's visions of springtime flowers and pollen that come to mind, not visions of dancing sugarplums. Be careful, though - the holiday season can cause coughing and sneezing, too!
Trans Word News reports that fresh Christmas trees, poinsettias, and stored boxes can stir up potential allergy triggers like dust and mold.
Dr. Rajiv Sashay, Director of Laboratory Services with Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory recommends following these tips to help people suffering from allergies and asthma:
- Artificial Tree: "Natural Christmas trees contain a lot of dust, mites, pollen and other allergens that can aggravate nasal passages," Dr. Sahay recommends an artificial tree to severe allergy sufferers.
- Natural Tree: "If you want to stay with tradition and buy a home-grown tree hose it down with the water, then let it dry outside before brining it inside removing many of the allergens on the tree," recommended Dr Sahay. "The water in the tree stand is stagnant allowing mold and bacteria to grow. You may want to siphon out the old water and replace it with new each week," comments Dr. Sahay.
- Housekeeping: "During the holiday's increase your normal housekeeping around the Christmas tree and make sure your vacuum cleaner has a true HEPA filter" recommends Dr. Sahay.
- Avoid Scented Candles and Oil: Dr. Sahay feels that the"fragrances can irritate the sinuses and respiratory system causing allergies and asthma to flair."
- Remove Interior Fresh Plants and Flowers: "Moist soil encourages the growth of mold propagules which can become airborne" Sahay indicated.
- Humidifiers: Keep humidity close to 50% as best possible
- Large Plastic Bins: "Last but not least store all decorations in large plastic bins keeping them dust-free during the off-season. Before brining in the bins back into the home for thje new season wipe them down with 10% bleach solution to remove the past years allergens," recommends Dr Sahay.
For more information on Indoor Air Quality, visit the AdvantaClean website.