Learn what causes allergies and how to help reduce your exposure and symptoms.
Laundry can be a chore. But taking allergens for a spin in the washer and dryer can help minimize your exposure, so you can enjoy more allergy -symptom relief.
Some new washers come with special allergen -removal settings. These settings automatically set your water temperature to the right level to minimize common allergy triggers like cat dander and dust mites .1
If you don’t have a “sanitize” or “allergen cycle” setting on your washing machine, the whites or hot cycle (>130ºF/54ºC) can help reduce dust mites. Make sure you follow the instructions on your washing machine and the detergent’s packaging to select the right temperature to avoid damaging your clothing and linens.
Wet laundry left in the washer for too long can get mouldy. You will be able to tell by the mildew smell. If you think your clean laundry has gotten funky, rewash it — and remember to throw it in the heated dryer immediately.
Don’t hang laundry out to dry in the sun, where it can collect pollen and mould spores.
One of the most common indoor allergens is dust mites, which collect easily in bedding because these pesky creatures thrive on dead skin. To reduce buildup, wash your sheets, pillowcases and blankets at least once a week in hot water (>130ºF/54ºC) and dry in a heated dryer to help kill dust mites.
You don’t always need water to remove allergens from laundry. Dry cleaning also kills dust mites.2
Laundry rooms generate heat and humidity, which can lead to mould growth. Reduce the moisture by placing a dehumidifier in the room, opening a window while doing laundry, turning on a ceiling fan and installing a good ventilation system.
The information on this site is intended for healthcare professionals in the United States and is not intended for the general public.
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