Improving the Air Quality in Your Home: Bedrooms

by J on October 6, 2010

It’s a scary fact, but scientific research is showing that the air within our homes and other buildings at times can be even more polluted than the outdoor air in the largest and most industrialized cities.  A great deal of this pollution can be attributed to the availability and use of chemicals in the average home. A generation or two ago, most homemakers used much milder cleaning agents to clean their homes. With the plethora of new cleaners on the market, as well as the exposure to chemicals in products such as furniture, carpet and cupboards, our indoor air quality is a concern.

The Environmental Protection Agency has some guidelines on home air quality for each room of your home. Improving the air quality in your home is one home improvement you must make. For this blog, we’ll focus on the bedrooms.

Problem areas:  A main cause of concern in the bedroom is that it often contains materials that can collect dust. Your mattress, pillow, carpet, drapery, bedding and other fabrics need to be kept free of dust. Dust mites are a cause of allergy and asthma attacks in some people, especially in children.

What you should do:  Wash the bedding once a week, using hot water. You should also use allergen-proof mattress and pillow slip covers. These can be found at home good stores and at most discount stores such as Meijer and Walmart. Another source of dust mites are stuffed animals. If your child is particularly allergic to dust mites, you may need to limit the number of stuffed animals they have, and try to keep them off the bed.

Washing Directions for Stuffed Animals

However, there are ways to remove the dust mites from stuffed animals so that you don’t have to throw away your child’s favorite toys. If the stuffed animal is washable, wash it in the washing machine using hot water. Hot water will kill the dust mites on the surface and inside the animal, as well as wash away most of the waste product from the mites. Put the stuffed toy in the dryer on high heat. Be sure to clean the lint trap immediately when finished.

If the toy is not washable, seal it in a plastic bag or plastic wrap and place it in the freezer overnight. Unwrap it and throw it in the dryer on high heat, or vacuum it with a hand vac to remove the dead mites and waste particles. You should wash or freeze the animal monthly and vacuum or throw in a hot dryer weekly. Click to read more on killing dust mites in stuffed toys.

Another important tip is to not allow pets to sleep in the bedrooms. Pet dander is a big allergic trigger for some people.

Finally, maintain low indoor humidity in the bedroom, ideally between 30 to 50 per cent.

Practicing these safety tips as well as having an air duct cleaning service check and clean your air ducts will help you keep the bedroom areas of your home safe places for you and your children.

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