There is a common misconception that people with asthma and allergies should avoid carpet in the home. Actually, the opposite is true. Studies have shown that when properly cleaned, carpet may actually be the best flooring for allergies and asthma, as it can help reduce symptoms. One study in particular specifically demonstrated that different floor coverings have a significant impact on airborne particle concentration, and that airborne particle concentrations were often lower with carpet as opposed to hard floors. That’s because carpeting effectively traps airborne particles and allows regular vacuuming to effectively eliminate any particles so that they are not left to float in the air. Also, when carpet is kept clean and dry, mold simply cannot grow on synthetic fibers.
The best carpet for those with allergies is a clean one. To keep your carpet in great shape, reduce allergens and retain good indoor air quality, consider these tips from the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI):
1. Vacuum Regularly
How often do you really need to vacuum? High-traffic or pet areas should be vacuumed daily, medium-traffic areas need to be vacuumed about twice a week and light-traffic areas should be vacuumed weekly. Use a CRI-certified vacuum for optimum soil removal, dust containment and to thoroughly remove allergens from your carpet without damaging it.
2. Limit Dirt Intrusion
Keeping as much dirt and grime off the carpet as possible is ideal. Be proactive and put out a durable entrance mat for people to wipe off their feet before entering your home. Then require everyone to take off their shoes so less dirt is tracked inside.
3. Deep Clean Annually
Once a year, your carpet should be cleaned by hot water extraction by a professional. This process extracts deeply embedded dirt that regular vacuuming can’t reach and thoroughly removes allergens from your carpet. To find a CRI Seal of Approval Service Provider, visit www.carpet-rug.org.
If you suffer from particularly bad allergies, consider cleaning your upholstered furniture, draperies and blinds also. Like carpet, these also need regular cleaning. Drapes and blinds can build up microscopic allergens quickly from open windows. Vacuum and wash regularly and consider hiring a professional cleaner once a year or as needed.
Carpet provides many benefits for many different people, including those with allergies. So before you spend a lot of money taking out your home’s carpet, remember why you chose it in the first place. Then take the proper steps to clean it so you can enjoy your beautiful carpet without worrying about your allergies for many years to come.