Now that the weather is getting colder, your children or child will be spending much more time indoors. If your child suffers from allergies, all this time cooped up in the house can lead to sniffling, sneezing and other symptoms. These symptoms could cause your child to feel run down and prevent them from playing, doing homework or participating in other family activities. Allergy symptoms may even begin to affect their sleep. But what is it exactly that causes these indoor allergy symptoms? And what can you do as a parent to help prevent them? Keep reading to learn more about indoor allergies and how you can help your child cope with them. Indoor Allergens These three indoor allergens are usually the culprits behind allergy symptoms felt by both children and adults in the home:
- Dust Mites - Dust mites are extremely small insect-like creatures that eat skin cells. They are typically present is most homes, but only pose a problem when a family member is allergic to them.
- Pet Dander - Pet dander are the tiny flecks of skin shed by cats, dogs, birds and any other animal with fur or feathers. Different types of animals have different dander, some of which may cause worse reactions in the humans who are allergic to them.
- Indoor Mold - Mold growth in the home is caused by excess moisture. Indoor molds are most often found in the bathroom, kitchen and even in potted plants.
Reducing Your Child’s Allergy Symptoms Having a child with allergies can sometimes leave a parent feeling helpless. There’s no magic drug that will make allergies go away completely. Some allergy triggers, like dust mites, are practically impossible to eliminate completely. But there’s good news. Allergens and your child’s allergy symptoms can both be managed by taking these measures:
- Protect your child’s bed - Using allergy protection bedding, such as mattress encasements and pillow protectors, will form a protective seal around your child’s mattress and pillows to keep allergens from settling into the fibers. This will help reduce exposure to allergens during sleep.
- Wash Bedding Regularly - In addition to using protective bedding, it’s important that you wash your child’s bedsheets and pillow cases at least every other week in hot water to remove any allergens that have settled on the linens.
- Limit Stuffed Animals - Limit your child’s stuffed animal collection to only a few favorites. A large amount of stuffed animals will harbor many allergens that can increase your child’s symptoms. It’s also important to wash the stuffed animals your child decides to keep. If the stuffed animal cannot be washed, you can als place it in a ziploc bag and put it in the freezer overnight to eliminate allergens.
- Don’t Allow Pets in the Bedroom - If you do have pets it’s very important that you don’t allow them to go into your child’s bedroom. While your child still may feel symptoms in other rooms of the house, not being exposed to pet dander while they sleep will help decrease their symptoms overall.
- Vacuum Regularly - Vacuuming weekly will help suck up any indoor allergens that have found their way into your carpet and furniture.
- Clean Kitchen and Bathroom Regularly - Because the kitchen and bathroom are the most common for mold growth, it’s extremely important that you clean before mold growth even begins.
While it’s not possibly to completely get rid of your child’s indoor allergies, it is possible to control them. This will help you and your child both have a much more enjoyable fall and winter. What ways have you found effective for managing your child’s indoor allergies?