Whether you suffer from seasonal or year-round allergies, stepping outside can expose you to pollen and other common irritants that trigger a sinus flare-up. While there’s only so much you can do about the allergens floating around outside, your home should be a sanctuary.
Hypoallergenic Carpet Options
Many people with allergies worry that installing carpets in their house could make their allergies worse, but the good news is that doesn’t have to be true. If you have allergies but crave the cozy feeling of wall-to-wall carpeting, there are hypoallergenic options out there.
Here at Flooring America, we’re proud to carry leading carpet brands with hypoallergenic qualities. When you’re shopping for a carpet for allergy sufferers, it helps to have a wide range of choices so that you can find a carpet that looks amazing and will play nice with your sinuses. Here’s what you need to know:
What is Hypoallergenic Carpet?
There is no formal industry standard for hypoallergenic carpet, so it’s worth talking to a flooring expert and also doing your own research on carpet brands you’re interested in to see if they will meet your needs. Carpet is inherently hypoallergenic, but there are types of carpet that enhance the hypoallergenic environment.
What your carpet is made of
Some carpet materials are more hypoallergenic than others. Certain man-made fibers (such as nylon, olefin, and polypropylene) are naturally mold- and mildew-resistant, which can help cut down on allergic reactions.
Some natural fibers, such as wool, may have a natural hypoallergenic effect (if you are not allergic to wool!). Wool is kind of a wonder fiber that counteracts allergies in several ways. It creates a hostile environment for dust mites, and it creates less dust particles than other fibers as it wears. It can also potentially absorb harmful toxins and VOCs. (More on these later!)
The tightness of the weave and the length of the carpet fibers
A tightly woven carpet is easier to clean than looser, shaggier carpets with thick piles. Carpets with a tighter, denser weave will trap less dust and harbor less dust.
The amount of VOC emissions
One of the worst, and most often overlooked, allergy issues with new carpets is the off-gassing of potentially harmful chemicals produced by the manufacturing process. These chemicals, known as Volatile Organic Compounds or VOCs, can be serious triggers for people with allergies, asthma, and other respiratory conditions.
To avoid carpeting that may potentially contain VOCs, look for carpets with a GREENGUARD rating for low emissions. GREENGUARD is an independent VOC emissions standard and testing protocol that can help you choose the safest carpets for your home.
Carpet Care for Allergy Sufferers
It’s important to note that any carpet — whether it’s branded as hypoallergenic or not — must be regularly and properly cleaned in order to cut down on the presence of allergens in the home. Unlike the smooth surfaces of wood, linoleum, or vinyl flooring, the fibers of a carpet can trap and hold dust, dander, and pollen. These substances are then released back into the air when you walk over your carpet.
A strict vacuuming schedule (at least twice each week) can help, but you need a vacuum cleaner with a good filter, or you may just end up making those allergens airborne all over again. Adding regular carpet washing and shampooing to your housekeeping rotation is another great way to cut back on the amount of potentially irritating particles in your home.
Where to Buy Hypoallergenic Carpet
Brighten up your bedroom, living room or den with a brand new floor. Choosing the right carpet can help make your home a hypoallergenic haven while completely refreshing your decor.
Discovering the best carpet for you and your family may require a bit of research, but you’re not on your own. The friendly experts at your local Flooring America store will be happy to help you out: all you need to do is ask! Find your store here.