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Whether you are hosting guests for the holidays or just having a quiet family celebration, there are ways to make the task of cleaning easier. This guide assists you in getting your house holiday-ready in no time.
The thing about holiday decorations that is a definite bummer is dust bunnies. Dust is those innocent balls of fluff that contain allergens and make you and your guests sneeze and wheeze. Researchers have found that these tiny critters are loaded with skin flakes, cockroach particles, pet dander, lead, arsenic and other harmful substances, according to an article published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology.

What Exactly Does this Mean for Me?

If you are hosting guests, the ambiance is just as critical as the food and gifts. Remember, scented candles, air fresheners, and dust could all trigger allergy problems for your guests. It is estimated that around 50 million people in the world have various types of allergy and this is why proper careful planning of holiday cleaning is a must.

How Do I Find the Right Cleaning Agents?

There are possible carcinogens and asthma triggers in many common household cleaners. According to a new Environmental Working Group report, you should avoid using them when allergies are to be considered. Instead, make a cost-effective solution by mixing 1 part white vinegar to 9 parts of water. You can easily wipe down things in your home with a damp cloth or mop saturated with this solution.

As this solution dries, it leaves a shiny surface behind and the smell goes away after about an hour.  Also, this group recommends that you use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter, to help remove the allergens out of carpets and rugs. Another solution is to clean your floors with a steam mop device, like the Shark. This is a great invention that allows you to use steam instead of harsh chemicals to clean your floors.

What about Cleaning the Pets?

If you are expecting guests, know that around 10 percent of the general population is allergic to pet dander. It is a good idea to bathe your animals before guests arrive to cut down on this allergen. If you have a guest who is really allergic to the animals, plan to have a friend watch the pet or consider a kennel for the holidays.

How Do I Cut Down on Dust?

If your guests will be spending the night, make sure you wash all bed linens in really hot water (around 130 degrees). This is important for killing off lingering dust mites. If you can, hang the covers and pillowcases in the sun, as the UV rays will rid them of dust particles as well. Keep your house’s humidity level as low as possible, as dust mites die if the humidity drops below forty percent. Put away all stuffed animals and other dust-gathering items to prevent dust buildup in your home. Wipe all surfaces and clean all what-knots to rid dust around your home.

How Do I Get My Home to Smell Good?

It is important to note that most plug-in air fresheners and spray types contain synthetic fragrances make of volatile chemical compounds and some of these can trigger sneezing, wheezing, and other breathing problems. Choose, instead, to use beeswax candles or make a natural air freshener on your stovetop.

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