While we strive to have a dust free home, many of us don’t know where to begin. Dust is all around us and in the home, dust can wreak havoc on asthma and allergy sufferers.
“An allergy is the result of your body’s immune system overacting to what normally would not cause a reaction, such as pollen, dust mites and pet hair,” says Dr Suzan Bekir, Allergy Doctor, collective.care, Sydney.
Dr Bekir, a General Practitioner for 15 years with a special interest in allergies, says that for some people this overreaction to dust can cause symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, runny eyes and nose, asthma, conjunctivitis, and more prevalent today, eczema.
While it is impossible to completely rid your home of dust, there are some ways to minimise dust, and central to that is an efficient and hard-working vacuum.
“At Miele, we are committed to bringing our customers innovative products that improve their lives and when it comes to air quality and the mitigation of allergies, Miele’s Blizzard CX1 does just that,” says Sharon May, Floorcare Product Manager, Miele Australia.
“The Blizzard CX1 is a bagless vacuum that combines superior Vortex technology with a unique three-stage filtration and dust disposal system that ensures when the machine is emptied, plumes of fine dust are kept at bay.
“Thanks to the Blizzard CX1’s HEPA AirClean Lifetime filter, up to 99.95% of small particles such as fine dust and allergens are retained in the system, providing that added security for allergy and asthma sufferers,” Ms May said.
Break down of dust
Dust is made up of a variety of things from blowing dirt, bacteria, pollen, pollutants, mould, pet hair, dust mites and human skin.
Dust build up can also be dependent on what is happening outside, says Dr Bekir. “For example, if you or your neighbour are renovating, there is going to be more dust in the home, and if you are prone to dust allergies, they will be heightened during this time,” she added.
“Pet hair or dander can be stuck in carpet and upholstered furniture for months and months on end. I always recommend to my clients that they invest in a good vacuum with a HEPA filter to reduce the re-circulation of dust mites back into the air, and always vacuum once a week.
“Dust can cause a real disturbance to some people’s lives. Clients present at our clinic with symptoms such as a permanent blocked nose, headaches, fatigue and sleeping difficulties. What they don’t realise is that a dust mite allergy could be the underlying issue,” Dr Bekir said.
Dust busting ideas
“Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent an allergy from presenting, however, there are lifestyle changes that individuals can make to improve the air quality at home and in turn mitigate allergic symptoms,” Dr Bekir said.
“I always talk to my patients about focusing on the bedroom first, after all this is where many of us spend most our time,” she said.
“In addition, bed linen needs to be washed weekly in hot water at a temperature greater than 60 degrees Celsius,” she added.
Other top tips include:
- Avoid heavy curtains, stick with venetians or blinds.
- Choose leather furniture over upholstered furniture.
- Remove any underlays on your bed.
- If your mattress is old, consider replacing it; dust mites can build up inside mattresses.
- Where possible, keep your windows open to increase the circulation of fresh air.
- Consider using air purifiers throughout your home to improve air quality.
- Use Eucalyptus oil liberally when cleaning your home and add a few drops to your washing.
- Wash soft toys weekly.
- De-clutter your home as best you can; clutter breeds dust mites.
The Blizzard CX1 is endorsed by Sensitive Choice, a National Asthma Council Australia initiative. To find out more about Miele’s brand new bagless vacuum range, head to www.mieleblizzard.co.nz