Allergy & Asthma Associates-Patient Education
- Mattresses and boxsprings should be encased with a plastic zippered
mattress case (this holds in dust which accumulates even in new mattresses and
- Use a polyester ( synthetic) pillow (feather or foam pillows tend to
collect dust). Wash the pillow every three months.
- A wood or linoleum floor is best, and should be damp mopped daily. If
you have carpeting in the bedroom, do not vacuum more than once per week ( this raises
dust). If you are dust sensitive, have someone also do the vacuuming or wear a mask while
- Clean the bedroom surfaces with a damp cloth daily.
- In the bedroom avoid bookshelves ( they collect dust), houseplants
(they can harbor mold), stuffed animals ( they collect dust), venetian blinds,
upholsterred furniture, down or other comforters, felt rug pads made of animal hairs, and
- Keep closet doors shut. Inspect closets for mold or mildew, which can
be removed with a dilute bleach solution ( 1:10 in water).
- Avoid wool fabrics, which are irritating and collect dust.
- If you have a window air-conditioner, change the filters and clean
the unit (mold can grow in air-conditioners) regularly.
- Electrostatic or HEP A room air filters m:lY be useful for very
REST OF THE HOUSE
- Clean furnace and change filters monthly to reduce dust.
- A relative humidity of 35-50% reduces mites and molds. Clean
humdifiers, or dehumidifiers regularly.
- Inspect basements, crawlspaces, closets and refrigerators for mold or
mildew, and clean if present.
- Furry pets should be avoided, especially if you are sensitive to
danders. Such pets should be kept outside the house if possible. In any case, pets should
never be allowed in bedrooms.
- Cigarette smoke is irritating, and should not be allowed in the
- Do not over-water houseplants (this can lead to mold).
- Roaches are a common problem in this area. If they are found, use
commercially available sprays to prevent further multiplication. Vacuum thoroughly around
baseboards, cabinets, refigerators, and food storage areas to remove body parts.
- Feather-sensitive individuals should avoid down jackets, quilts,
comforters, and pillows.