Leaving dust untouched can lead to some real misery for people in your home who suffer from allergies or asthma. The thing is, dusty homes are more common than you think: the average household actually collects around 40lbs of dust a year. All this dust comes from a mix of animal dander, loose clothing fibers, carpet fluff, and the dirt that you track indoors when you come from outside.
When not swept away, dust can attract cockroaches and dust mites, insects that can burrow into bedding, upholstered furniture, and carpets. These tiny animals thrive in warm and humid environments, and might be especially pesky in the summer months. The small particles you see floating in shafts of sunlight? Some of those particles are actually dead mites and their waste products. Not only is this pretty gross, it's also extremely unhealthy! An overabundance of dust can be a huge trigger for asthma attacks and allergic reactions.
The thing is, no amount of cleaning will completely eliminate dust from your home. However, you can dramatically reduce the amount of dust in your home. If you or your family members find yourselves sneezing often, or suffering from watery eyes, then you either have a dust allergy or an extremely dusty home! Here are 8 easy tips to keep the dust at bay:
1. Remove your shoes before entering
This isn't a problem in Singapore, where removing your shoes before entering is just plain good manners. But if ever you encounter a guest who balks at the idea of walking around barefoot, then it'd be good to inform them that 80% of household dust enters a home via the dirt on the bottom of people's shoes. Have a pair of indoor house slippers prepared for particularly finicky guests, just in case.
2. Keep a mat outside the door
Sturdy, durable mats should be in place on both sides of your front door. This is so people can wipe their feet before entering (see tip #1 for why this is important). As long as you remember to take the mats outdoors and shake the dust out them every couple of days, you should be able to significantly cut down on all the dust you track indoors.
Want to go the extra mile? Don't just pay attention to your front door mats, shake out your carpets, rugs, and cushions too! Use an old broom handle or buy a carpet beater and have at it until you no longer see dust flying off of them.
3. Change your AC unit filters
AC experts recommended changing your filters every three months, but this is just the minimum requirement. Changing them more often should dramatically reduce dust particles from circulating in the air. Some aircons come with disposable filters that you can throw out and replace every 30 days. You can also DIY clean your aircon filters every month as a more sustainable and inexpensive solution.
4. Clean your bedding regularly
You have no idea what can collect in a mattress over time: dead skin flakes, dust mites, dander, dead insects, and a host of other items. Not to mention, sleeping on top of that much dust can cause some serious health consequences. The build-up can happen in your bedding and pillows too, as people tend to focus more on cleaning the bed sheets rather than the bedding and mattress.
To prevent this, make sure you vacuum your mattress and launder your pillows and bedding once a quarter. You'll also want to wash the mattress cover, duvet cover, and uncovered comforters once a month, and the sheets and pillowcases once a week. By keeping your bed clean, you won't just keep allergic reactions at bay, you'll also be giving yourself a better night's sleep and healthier-looking skin!
5. Vacuum the room regularly
The vacuum cleaner: a dusty home's worst enemy. How often you should vacuum usually depends on how many people are living in your household. However, a good rule of thumb is to vacuum each room once a week, while vacuuming the "high-traffic" areas such as hallways and the kitchen every other day. If you don't have a vacuum cleaner yet, be sure to find one with high-efficiency particulate (HEPA) filters, as these are known for removing 99.9% of pollen, bacteria, and animal dander from the air.
6. Clean out your air ducts
If the thought of pulling the vent cover off of your floor register and taking a look inside gives you goosebumps, then perhaps it's time to clear out the air ducts. Ducts are magnets for dust and dirt build-up, but it only takes a few minutes to give them a thorough cleaning. Do this monthly and you'll see just how much easier it is to breathe without dust and dander blowing around.
7. Use the proper cleaning equipment
No, feather dusters are not considered proper cleaning equipment. While cute, the most they do is move dust around the room instead of actually getting rid of it. Instead, use a vacuum cleaner (see tip #5) for curtains, carpets, and baseboards. For other surfaces, use a damp cloth (preferably microfiber) and rinse it repeatedly to reduce moving dust around instead of getting rid of it.
8. Invest in an air purifier or a dehumidifier
Humidity helps dust mites thrive, so a dehumidifier should help in terms of mite control. If dust mites and tiny insects aren't such a problem in your household, you can opt to use an air purifier instead. The machine will get rid of airborne contaminants and eliminate allergens and bacteria from floating around.
A Clean Home is a Healthy Home
The best way to keep dust at bay? Regular cleaning. While it sounds simple, we all know how difficult it can be to fit a cleaning schedule into the hustle and bustle of daily life. Here at HomeFresh, we pride ourselves on making clean homes an accessible reality. Our highly-experienced cleaners will keep things organized and reduce dust in your home, saving you time and effort. Book us now!