TAMPA, Fla. (March 28, 2016) – Spring has officially sprung, and with it have come the itchy eyes and scratchy throats that many associate with allergy season. For Florida residents, this means that oak pollen is now in full bloom, forcing many individuals to stay indoors to find relief.
For people with allergies, asthma and other respiratory conditions, ensuring that the home is free of pollen will be important in the coming months, as this is often a safe haven from the cold-like symptoms associated with spring. These include sneezing, watery, swollen and itchy eyes, runny nose and cough.
“Keeping the home free of pollen and other allergens is particularly important in March, April and May, as the concentration of pollen in the air is highest during these months,” said Rajiv Sahay, Ph. D., FIAS, CIAQP, Director of Laboratory Services at Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory (EDLab), a division of Pure Air Control Services, a professional indoor environmental quality firm located in Clearwater, Fla. “In addition, there are certain things that people can do to avoid these allergens.”
For instance, checking the pollen count before leaving the house and staying indoors if the concentration is high. Typically, the pollen count is higher in the morning hours and tends to taper off in the afternoon. If you must go outdoors during these hours, changing into fresh clothes in the mudroom or garage will also help avoid tracking pollen into your home.
“If you find that you or your family members’ asthma or allergies are acting, up even when indoors, a do-it-yourself test kit can help you determine dominant allergens including pollen grains that may be associated with your concerns related to health and hygiene ,” said Dr. Sahay.
Affordable, allergen test kits provide residents a tool to identify and quantify allergen levels within their homes. From there, families can actively seek to reduce triggers and improve symptoms related to those allergens.
The Screen Check Allergen Test Kit, available through www.IndoorAirTest.com, allows users to test for pollen, as well as mold, dust mites, fiberglass, skin cells and other airborne allergens that might be present in the spring. The resident takes a sample from a surface within the home and mails it to the lab, where it is analyzed using state-of-the-art equipment. Homeowners receive a report with results within three to five business days. There are a number of ways to reduce allergens identified in the home.
For example, regular dusting, particularly in those hard-to-reach areas, will ensure that allergens are not accumulating in the home. Maintaining roughly 60 percent humidity in the home will also reduce the risk of these allergens becoming a problem.
“Ensuring that your air conditioning unit is running properly and regularly changing air filters can also greatly reduce the concentration of allergens in the home,” said Dr. Sahay.
For homes that have a high concentration of allergens, professional remediation may also be necessary. To determine if this is necessary, homeowners should contact a remediation service.
About Pure Air Control Services
Pure Air Control Services, Inc. (Pure Air) is a nationally recognized indoor environmental quality firm that offers a full range of professional solutions. Divisions include Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory (EDLab), Building Health Check, Diagnostics and Building Sciences, and Building Remediation Sciences. For more information, visit www.pureaircontrols.com.