Living with sinus allergies is not easy, but living with someone who has sinus allergies is not easy, either. Your spouse may be stuffed up and tired when you want to play. And your mate’s sneezing and wheezing may keep you up at night, too.
How can you provide some sinus allergy relief -- for both of you? Is there a better strategy than nagging your spouse to take allergy medicine every day?
By Dr. Amy Wechsler
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Fortunately, there is, if you’re willing to look at home allergy treatment as a couples’ activity. You can help minimize your mate’s uncomfortable sinus allergy symptoms around the house by taking care to reduce some of the triggers that bring them on.
Create an Allergy-Proof Home
Allergy-proofing a home goes beyond vacuuming. Here are some tips that can help:
Be a minimalist. Evaluate furnishings and collectibles to make sure they don’t contribute to sinus allergies. Overstuffed furniture often contains down feathers, and antiques may have horsehair fabric.
Show off your hardwood floors. It’s easier to keep linoleum, hardwood, or tile dust free than it is to remove all the dust from carpets.
Encase your mattress and all pillows in zippered covers that create a barrier between dust mites and your spouse. Make sure your pillow is zipped up, too: If you sleep on a feather pillow that’s not covered, it can trigger allergies in your bedmate.
Install a fan-based HEPA air purifier in your most used living areas to collect dust before it settles.
Splurge for well-made furnace and air-conditioning filters instead of cheap fiberglass ones. Look for a MERV (minimum efficiency value rating) of 8-12. Change or wash permanent filters every month.
Use micro-fiber cloths or an electrostatic duster for dusting the house. They pick up dust and pollen instead of swirling it around the indoor air.
When spring is in the air, turn on the air-conditioner instead of opening windows to cut down on the pollen coming inside. Ceiling or standing fans also help cool and move air. Clean the fan blades first to reduce the chance of spreading dust particles which might have settled on the blades while the fans were not in use.
Limit house plants because wet soil encourages mold growth.
Avoid buying scented products. People with allergies can become overly sensitive to the scents in cologne, cleaning supplies, potpourri, and beauty products. If your perfume makes your spouse sneeze, avoid wearing it – at least at home. Get rid of scented products that you don’t need or buy them scent-free.