The arrival of springtime is typically a welcome change. But for millions of Americans, it also brings sniffles and sneezes along with it, as blooming plant life and warmer weather lead to an increase in allergens in the air.
If you're looking to do everything you can to keep your allergies at bay, then you should start by adjusting some of your regular home cleaning routines. After all, many chemicals in regular cleaning products are linked to allergic reactions, including sinus problems, itchy eyes, wheezy breathing, or skin irritation. Some cleaning chemicals have even been linked to more severe medical conditions like cancer and respiratory illnesses, according to an article from the American Lung Association.
Opting for natural cleaning products and adjusting your cleaning routine are excellent ways to combat seasonal and chemical-related allergies, keeping the health of your family and the environment at its best.
Making the change to natural products should help reduce the presence of allergies in the home, but there are still seasonal allergens to combat. Try these cleaning tips to keep allergens under control.
Vacuum and dust regularly: Weekly, or even daily, dust and vacuum sessions can drastically improve allergy conditions by removing dust mites, dead skin cells, and seasonal pollen from home surfaces.
Keep an eye out for mold: Window tracks, shower corners, and other damp places are prime places for mold to start growing. Scrub them once a week with our Natural Multi-Surface Cleaner.
Keep the outside, outside: A little fresh air is nice, but don't let it in by opening a window or door. Enjoy the outdoors by going outside to avoid letting seasonal contaminants into your home.
Dust mites are not your friends: Every cushion, mattress, comforter, and pillow accumulates dust mites, so make sure to vacuum them or run them through your dryer on low heat (if the item is safe to use in a dryer) every 1 to 2 months.
Many home cleaning products contain harmful — and sometimes even toxic —chemicals. Go through your cleaning products and examine their ingredients; if they include any of the following, then you may want to toss them and opt for gentler cleaners.
Ammonia: This compound of nitrogen and hydrogen is often found in glass cleaners and liquid dish soaps. According to the New York Department of Health, exposure to high concentrations of ammonia in the air can lead to burning of the throat, nose and respiratory tract, and contact with industrial-strength cleaners can lead to skin burns and eye damage. Although most common household cleaners contain lower concentrations of ammonia, we recommend avoiding this ingredient altogether.
Formaldehyde: Commonly used in shampoos and commercial cleaning products, formaldehyde and formaldehyde-based preservatives can irritate the upper respiratory tract and the skin. Simply breathing it in or getting it on your skin can cause allergic reactions in the eyes, nose, and throat, according to the American Lung Association.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS): SLS can be found in many detergents, soaps, shampoos, and other personal care items. Although not extremely harmful if used briefly on the skin at low concentrations, it can nonetheless cause skin and eye irritation, according to the International Journal of Toxicology.
Triclosan: Although banned by the FDA for use in soap products in 2016, this chemical is still widely used in personal care products such as toothpaste and hand sanitizer. According to this article from the National Center for Biotechnology Information, triclosan is readily absorbed into human skin and has been reported to be an endocrine disrupting chemical. Some studies have examined an association between high triclosan levels and reproductive and developmental defects in infants.
Hydrochloric Acid: This is used in many bathroom disinfectants and toilet cleaners, but if you inhale it, the fumes can cause respiratory issues, sometimes even resulting in corrosive injury to the lips, mouth, throat, and stomach. Because it's considered a poison, it can cause burns and irritation to the skin, according to studies from the Agency for Toxic Substances.
Synthetic Fragrances: Scents sell home cleaning products. We equate floral, citrus, or fresh smells with cleanness. However, fragrances used in cleaning products are commonly made of synthetic chemicals that can result in respiratory problems and skin irritation, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Learning about the potentially harmful effects of chemicals used in everyday cleaning products can be quite scary. Switching to plant-based, natural cleaning products is a powerful way to cut down on allergies, as well as more severe health threats, in your home. Give these ones a try next cleaning day!
Bathroom and kitchen surfaces: Try using our Natural Multi-Surface Cleaner to tackle bathrooms and kitchen surfaces. It safely and effectively cleans every household surface, including glass, and is made with natural fragrances. Our plant-based solution is hypoallergenic and non-toxic, making it safe to use around the entire family (even babies and pets).
Dishes and mopping: Puracy Natural Dish Soap, made with plant-powered ingredients, is safe and effective for use on ceramic, crystal, glass, plastic, and all other surfaces you would normally clean with a premium dish soap. Squeeze about a quarter-sized amount into a bucket of warm water to mop your non-carpeted floors.
Laundry and stains: Think about the fabrics we use: Sleeping on bedding and wearing clothes washed with synthetically formulated detergents can cause skin irritation, according to research by Poison Control. Switch to our Natural Laundry Detergent and Natural Stain Remover for tough laundry messes. Both are made with powerful plant-based enzymes that work thoroughly to clean all types of fabric.
Using natural cleaning products and cleaning regularly will work wonders on your allergies. And you'll also rest easy knowing that you're keeping your loved ones from being exposed to the harsh chemicals often found in traditional cleaning products.