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Monthly Archives: October 2011

  • Pet allergies don't necessarily mean you have to get rid of your cat

    Pet lovers everywhere know that their furry loved ones are more than just pets - they're family. That's why so many people grieve when they find out that they've developed a pet allergy. However, some pet owners may rejoice to know that a new pet allergy doesn't automatically mean they have to kiss their labradoodles goodbye. Unless your allergies are severe, there are a few ways you can optimize your home for a peaceful pet-owner relationship.

    In many cases, making the extra effort to keep your home clean can dramatically reduce symptoms. Trade your carpeting for tiles and hardwood floors to prevent pet dander from becoming matted into the material. Make sure you sweep and vacuum on a regular basis in order to prevent allergen buildup. You should also vacuum your upholstered furniture, especially if it's a place your pet frequents. Of course, if your allergies are really bothering you, you might want to consider implementing a strict no-pets-on-the-furniture policy.

    Perhaps the most effective thing you can do to protect your home from this common allergen is to invest in a home air purifier. Medical-grade air purifiers can help remove irritants such as pet dander from your home so that you and your beloved pet can live in harmony.

  • Making your bedroom an allergy-free zone

    Spring and fall can be a terrible time for allergy-sufferers everywhere, but there's nothing worse than being forced to feel the effects of the seasons inside your own home. For many people, the bedroom is the most offending area in the house, as all of the fabrics and upholstery make it a prime place for allergens to settle in.

    If you're tired of waking up each morning with itchy, watery eyes and a stuffy nose, it may be time to invest in the right materials to make your bedroom an allergy-free arena.

    Dust and other allergens become trapped within the pillows and mattress that you rest on each night. Keep these areas clean by using hypoallergenic pillowcases and mattress covers, which will prevent these allergens from settling in to stay.

    Hardwood floors are the best flooring for allergy sufferers, however if you have a carpet you'd rather not part with, consider getting a HEPA vacuum cleaner. This will help remove dust and other allergens that can become matted deep within the rug, causing a flareup of your symptoms.

    Finally, the best thing you can do to protect your home from airborne allergens and other irritants is to invest in a home air purifier. Medical-grade purifiers can help remove over 99 percent of indoor air pollution, which will help relieve your allergy symptoms and allow you to get a full night's rest.

  • Ensuring your home air quality is safe for the season

    As the weather begins cooling down for fall, many people will find themselves spending increased amounts of time indoors. However, with the windows sealed at this time of year, indoor air quality may be a concern for some.

    With the reduction of fresh air circulating indoors, airborne irritants, moisture and pollutants can become trapped inside your home. For those who are prone to allergies and asthma, this can be disastrous. However, even those who don't normally suffer from these conditions may find that their health is at risk.

    Earlier this season, mold spores reached the highest levels seen in decades, and pollens from plants like ragweed have been an even bigger bane to seasonal allergy sufferers across the country. More people who have not previously experienced seasonal allergies have been experiencing symptoms such as itchy, watery eyes, coughing and sore throat this year, reports USA Today.

    In order to preserve your health and keep your home protected, there are a few steps you should take before winter sets in. Replacing the filters in your furnace can protect you from air pollutants. Updating to modern windows and insulation can reduce the amount of moisture that's allowed to set in. Perhaps the best thing you can do to protect your home from indoor air hazards is to invest in a home air purifier. Professional-grade purifiers can reduce the amount of airborne irritants in your home by more than 99 percent.

  • Mold forces closings all around the U.S.

    Mold is becoming a big problem this season. Just this week, school children from Waterford Township, New Jersey, were forced to endure a week-long shutdown of all three elementary schools in the region after mold was discovered in at least two of the schools, reports MSNBC.

    But the problem doesn't stop there. According to Southern Maryland Newspapers Online, approximately 350 college students at St. Mary’s College of Maryland were displaced from their dormitories due to mold infestation. And in Wyoming, the state Department of Health stated that an entire building at the Wyoming State Hospital at Evanston was closed because of mold, reports the Star Tribune.

    "We have found our experience with mold in the residence halls this semester extremely frustrating, as have other colleges and universities in rain-soaked areas this season," St. Mary's College President Joseph Urgo told the news source. "Hurricane Irene and subsequent, prolonged damp and rainy weather exacerbate mold conditions in these residence halls."

    All institutions, whether publicly or privately operated, should do all in their power to ensure that children, patients and other individuals are safe from the hazards of mold this season. Using HEPA air purifiers, such as the IQAir HealthPro Plus, is one of the best ways to ensure that the air within your buildings is safe for those who occupy them.

  • Hospital-recommended asthma plans aren't producing healthier children

    A recent study conducted by The Joint Commission has indicated that children who are hospitalized due to asthma attacks are likely to need to return to the hospital due to asthma-related complications, despite receiving an asthma-related home management plan from healthcare professionals upon their discharge, reports Reuters.

    In all, 8 percent of children were re-hospitalized within three months of their previous hospital visit, and about 11 percent needed to visit the emergency room.

    According to researchers, one major factor is that families may not follow the home management plans handed out by hospital workers. In many cases, a child's family may not be able to afford or obtain the recommended medications.

    "Intuitively having a home management plan of care...makes perfect sense and that should improve their outcomes," lead study author Dr. Rustin Morse, from Phoenix Children's Hospital in Arizona, told the news source.

    In addition to obtaining the proper prescription medication, the number one thing parents can do to reduce the severity of flaring asthma symptoms is to create a safe haven within the home. Using hypoallergenic materials such as carpets, pillows and bed covers can help, as can cleaning floors and surfaces on a regular basis to make sure they're free of dust and other irritants.

    The number-one way to improve the quality of air within the home is by investing in a home air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus. This medical-grade air purifier has been designed to remove over 99 percent of airborne irritants and pollutants and will ensure that the air your child breathes at home is clean and healthy.

  • Children's asthma has been linked to obesity

    Children who are overweight have been shown to double their chances of developing asthma, reports Medical News Today. Additionally, chronic asthma is one of the leading reasons behind school absences for children, according to the news source.

    "A recent explanation that is being investigated is the over-production of cytokines (substances with inflammatory effect) due to a variety of stimuli that may lead to the development of asthma," Dr. Angel Mazon, PAAM 2011 Co-Chair and EAACI Pediatric Section Board Member, explained to the news source. "Thanks to these findings, physicians calculate that the frequency of asthma in obese children can be up-to-double that of non-obese kids."

    Antonella Muraro, PAAM 2011 Co-Chair and EAACI Treasurer, told Medical News Today that proper nutrition may be one of the most important factors in reducing the likeliness of childhood asthma. In particular, Muraro said that the Mediterranean Diet, which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, fish and fresh foods, has been shown to protect against the condition.

    If your child already suffers from asthma, a well-balanced diet is integral to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Keeping your home free from allergy triggers should also be a top priority. By investing in a medical-grade home air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus, you can ensure that your home is a safe haven against most common asthma triggers and other airborne pollutants.

  • Halloween brings unexpected complications for asthma and allergy sufferers

    When most people conjure up images of Halloween, they think of fun costumes, spooky decor and, of course, the candy. However, asthma and allergy sufferers may have other things on their mind on this festive holiday, including the sometimes unexpected triggers that are found lurking in their Halloween costumes, reports HealthDay News. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), dusty costumes, moldy pumpkins and fog machines can cause big problems for unsuspecting trick-or-treaters.

    "When people think of Halloween-associated allergies, they focus on candy and often overlook many other potential triggers," Dr. Myron Zitt, former ACAAI president, told the news source. "By planning ahead, you can ensure not only safe treats, but also safe costumes, makeup, accessories and decorations."

    In order to assure that you and your family are ready for Halloween, unpack all of your holiday decorations and costume materials early and ensure that they get a thorough cleaning before use. When storing items, try to seal cloth items like costumes in vacuum-sealed plastic so that the dust won't have a chance to settle in. Stow your items in a well-ventilated storage space to reduce your chances of unpleasant complications by next year. Using a home air purifier will also reduce the chances of allergens and asthma triggers becoming ensconced in your holiday decorations.

  • Recognizing the symptoms of mold exposure

    Mold spore counts have been particularly high this season due to erratic weather patterns and a higher-than-usual moisture rate. For many, this means heightened allergic reactions - however, even those who have never been troubled by a mold allergy can begin to suffer symptoms if the level of exposure is too great.

    Symptoms of mold exposure can run the gamut from mild to severe, according to the Mayo Clinic. Signs of mold exposure include itchy eyes, nose and throat, coughing or wheezing, postnasal drip, runny or stuffy nose, shortness of breath, excessive sneezing, a tightening sensation in the chest and watery eyes.

    Some individuals may suffer symptoms year-round, whereas others may only notice flare-ups during a particular season or at times when they're exposed to particularly high mold concentrations. Some symptoms may pass quickly, while others persist. If you've been feeling sensations for a significant period of time without improvement, you should contact your personal care provider for analysis and treatment.

    If mold has become an issue in your home, take action now before it's too late. IQAir purifiers can help to remove 99.5 percent of airborne mold spores from your home so that mold can't settle in to stay. These home air purifiers are also effective in removing other harmful air contaminants, such as airborne bacteria, viruses, pet dander, dust, pollen and noxious emissions.

  • October is National Home Indoor Air Quality Awareness Month

    This month is National Home Indoor Air Quality Awareness Month, making it the prefect time of year to see to it that your home is protected against common indoor pollutants. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), there are three steps you can take to improve the quality of the air inside your home and protect your family from the many health hazards that have been associated with indoor air pollution.

    The first step, source control, involves identifying and eliminating the major sources of pollution. For example, if your gas stove leaks unhealthy emissions, you can alter the settings or replace the stove so that the air inside your home is safer.

    The second step is ensuring that your home is well-ventilated. Many indoor heating and cooling systems do not include a mechanism for bringing fresh air from the outdoors into your home, but rather rely on recycling the same air over and over again. Take the time to periodically open windows and doors to ensure that a fresh supply of air is making its way inside your home.

    Finally, the EPA recommends investing in a home air purifier that can remove harmful pollutants and other airborne hazards from the air within your home. For the most protection, invest in a medical-grade air purifier that can remove over 99 percent of indoor air pollutants.

  • Fall allergies may be easily triggered this year

    Those who suffer from seasonal allergies may be ready to welcome the colder months, however it may be too early to start celebrating. With the elevated levels of pollen and mold in the air this year, people can still expect to have their allergies triggered from such simple activities as raking leaves, reports the Courier Journal.

    "Fall weed pollens usually persist until the first good freeze, and...there is always some mold in the air unless there is a coat of snow on the ground," Dr. Derek Damin, an allergist with Kentuckiana Allergy, told the news source. "So we are not out of the woods yet."

    Because the air outdoors is still packed with allergens like pollen and mold, it's doubly important for allergy sufferers to protect the air inside their homes. Airborne allergens can easily travel inside the home and cause irritation and other symptoms.

    The best way to protect a home from these and other types of common allergens is by investing in a home air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus. The medical-grade filter can help remove more than 99 percent of airborne irritants and ensure that the family is breathing easy all year long.

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