Every time your family inhabits your home, there is a great probability that your home is the source of their illnesses.  What seems like occasional sneezing and watery eyes may stem from bedding and carpeting.  Frequent headaches and a dizzy feeling could be everyday household chemicals or fumes disturbing your body.  Many solutions are simple and can be fixed in the products you buy, and regular maintenance in your home.  Here are 5 ways you can help you and your family not get sick from your home. Your home should feel like a piece of paradise!

1.) Use household cleaners that have natural ingredients: Multi-surface cleaners, sprays and everyday household cleaners could have VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds) in them.  These compounds evaporate into the air, and later are inhaled.  Many cleaners such as bleach and cleansers have noxious fumes that are irritants and can make you sick.  Instead, opt for cleaners that use natural products such as vinegar, baking soda, water, and hydrogen peroxide.

2.) Ventilate your home regularly: Your home should have fresh air pass through it on a regular basis. Even in the hot summer, and cold winter when we don’t want to open windows, fresh air is important for your family’s health.  When using cleaning products, unpacking new furniture, or moving into a new home, “off gassing” occurs and can be harmful if inhaled for long periods of time. Consider storing furniture in a basement, or garage if possible before bringing into the main home. While cleaning, open windows and take frequent breaks to go inhale fresh air.

3.) Wash household bedding and clean carpets regularly. Dust mites and bed bacteria are typical of everyone’s beds.  To keep down the spread, use removable pillow cases and wash regularly. Similarly, with your carpet have it professionally cleaned on a regular basis.  Outside dirt, pet dander, dust, and pollen are common indoor allergens that settle in furniture and carpets. Use a HEPA filtered vacuum cleaner to keep air cleaner while vacuuming.

4.) Change the air conditioning filter regularly. Airborne particulates are common in households. To keep them at low levels and to keep your family from sneezing, replace the A/C filters directed by your unit.  If your unit is aging, consider having a certified air conditioning and heating specialist service your unit. They will explain how to maintain its life for years to come, and tell you the correct size of replacement filters to use.

5.) In children’s rooms wash toys, stuffed animals and surfaces. As parents, we always want the daycare provider and facility to be spotless and clean.  Although, when your child comes home, do you use the same practices in their room?  Stuffed animals are a breeding ground for germs, allergens, and everyday dirt. Toss them in the washer machine when you do the weekly laundry.  Consider using cleaning wipes for quick tidying, and wipe down toys, and put in the dish washer if they can fit!

Consider these tips the next time you purchase household cleaners and perform regular scheduled maintenance on your home.  You may save you family from suffering through ‘seasonal’ allergies, and help save the environment too.

What do you do in your household to keep everyone healthy? Are there other’s that I didn’t mention? Leave us comments, and let us know.