At this point in the year you’ve probably already seen a cloud of pollen or two drifting through the air. In fact the pollen count is so high this year due to the severe winter that this allergy season has been coined “the pollen vortex”. This is bad news for allergy sufferers. The high pollen means allergy symptoms will more than likely be severe, especially if you spend long amounts of time outdoors. But how can pollen affect you indoors? This depends on the measures you take to keep pollen out of your home. Below we have listed a number of ways you can protect yourself and your family from pollen allergy symptoms inside your home. While these will not completely eliminate your spring allergy symptoms, the will help you feel a little more at ease indoors. Keep Windows and Doors Closed The best way to avoid pollen exposure is to stay inside with all windows and doors shut tight. This can be hard to do when the weather is nice, but it’s a fair trade for lessened allergy symptoms. If you’ve kept your house cool with window fans or a breeze blowing through a screen door in the past, it is probably time you should switch to air conditioning. In addition to keeping your house cool while the windows and doors are shut, and air conditioner will help filter pollen and other allergens from the air in your home. Protect Where You Sleep Pollen can easily cling of fabrics and soft furniture. Because of this, it is especially important that you protect where you sleep, as this is the place you are most vulnerable to allergens. Protect your bed by using allergy bedding such as a zippered mattress protector and pillow protectors. These items will form a protective shell around your mattress and pillows to keep pollen and other allergens from settling into your bedding. Stop Pollen at the Door Pollen and other allergens can easily be tracked into your home from family members and guests entering from the outside. Put doormats at every entryway, both inside and outside, to trap allergens before they can settle into your carpet, furniture and curtains. Also have family members and guests take off their shoes either in a garage, breezeway, or immediately after entering the house. This will further prevent allergens from being tracked through your home. Clean Off Pets After They Come Inside If you have pets that go outside, they can easily bring pollen back into your house on their fur and skin. Pets do not need to be banished to the outdoors for all of allergy season, but it is important that you brush them thoroughly before they come inside to get rid of any pollen. You may even want to consider lightly vacuuming their fur. Also be sure to bathe pets frequently, especially if they spend any long periods of time outdoors. The “pollen vortex” may be hitting us full force, but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer 24/7. Taking these measures will require a little extra effort, but you will be happy you protected your home from pollen when you and your family are sniffling and sneezing less while you’re in the comfort of your home.