When youíre allergic to something, itís only sane and rational to avoid that thing that causes your allergies. But if youíre a cat-lover like me, you couldnít be any farther from being sane and rational. Itís good thing then that the symptoms of cat allergies are pretty much manageable, though they may never go away completely.
First, remember the basics about cat allergens. They are typically airborne, so that means you have to breathe them in first before they can trigger any of your cat allergies symptoms. Cat allergens are very small, microscopic even, and smaller in size compared to pollens or mold spores, the two other common airborne allergens. That means they stay suspended in the air longer and they can get through your nasal passages easier.
If you keep a cat around, the rate of recontamination goes higher. As your cat runs around the house, it sheds dander (dried skin cells) and proteins from its saliva and urine, raising the level of cat allergens in your house even more and causing you to get cat allergies more often.
Below are some steps you can take to reduce cat allergens in your home and, in the process, decrease your cat allergies as well:
Step 1: No more cats sleeping on the bed.
When you think about it, this is actually a very minimal price to pay. Think about itchy eyes, wheezing, nasal congestion, difficulty breathing, rashes, swelling, and youíll realize that not having your cat in your bed is not that terribly important. After all, when you have cat allergies but still insist on keeping a cat, you have to know that there are a few things that you have to give up to achieve a balance between your health and your love for your cat.
Step 2: Keep them out of the bedroom all together.
This is yet another small price to pay for allergy relief. To prevent air from other rooms in your house from contaminating your bedroom air, keep the door closed at all times. An air-conditioner or an air purifier would be of much help to keep your bedroom a sanctuary from cat allergies.
Step 3: Wash all bedding in 140-degree hot water at least twice monthly.
Because some of you may allow your cat to sneak up your bed every now and then, be sure to wash your beddings often. This will help reduce dust mites and cat allergens which you may unconsciously breathe in while sleeping.
Step 4: Use HEPA air filters in rooms where you usually keep your cat.
A HEPA air filter is high efficiency particulate air filter. Sometimes, even after youíve thoroughly cleaned your house of all dust and dirt, a few cat allergens remain. They are often very difficult to remove. Air filters will help you clean the air in your room and keep cat allergens at a low level.
Step 5: Vacuum up cat allergen with high grade HEPA vacuum cleaner twice weekly.
Cat allergens often stick to walls, carpet, flooring, chairs, and furniture. During vacuuming, be sure to thoroughly check and clean these surfaces. Also, use hypo-allergenic vacuum bags to prevent the allergens from escaping and getting in the air while you clean.