5 Spring Cleaning Tasks to Prevent Allergies

It’s allergy season.

While daffodils and longer days brighten the mind, allergy symptoms such as sneezing, itchy red eyes, and breathing problems can mute much of the joy. The most common culprits that cause household allergies are dust mites, pest droppings (such as cockroaches), mold, and pollen, and they thrive in the dust and fabrics of your less than clean home. Thus, springtime, with its accompanying cleaning, is the perfect opportunity to get a handle on these irritants.

Check out these five spring cleaning tasks you should prioritize this season.

Protect Yourself

Your first task is to protect yourself while cleaning, as these activities will agitate the dust that triggers your immune system, and it will last for house. Make sure you’re vacuuming with a HEPA filter, and wear a filter mask while dusting, sweeping or vacuuming (you can get these at the hardware store or pharmacy). Wear long sleeves and pants tucked in, and leave the house after cleaning for at least 2 hours.

If your allergies are serious, consider investing in a dehumidifier with a high-quality filter (mold and dust mites love moisture) and a separate air filter system. It may also be time to clean or replace the filters on your heating and air conditioning, and other appliances.

Dust Your Blinds

Because they hand in low-traffic areas right next to heating vents, blinds are dust magnets. This means they accumulate quite a bit of normal household dust as well as pet hair and dander. Professional maid services recommend using a disinfectant solution or vinegar and a microfiber cloth for cleaning blinds, and always moving from top to bottom.

Other specialists say you can use the vacuum cleaner with a soft attachment to quickly clean blinds, but this may not trap the dust. One online hack suggests making a “dust puppet” with an old sock. Hear me out. By putting an old sock on your and dipping it in disinfectant, you can use precise movements to capture and trap household dust on blinds of any type.

Don’t Hang Laundry Outside

I know it’s hard to hear, since the laundry industry literally markets the fresh scent of a sunny day with its products. But when washing fabrics and linens this spring, hang them inside or use a dryer. This is not the “greenest” advice, but your bedding and fabrics will pick up pollens and other airborne allergens outside, and the high head of washing machines and dryers will kill bacteria, dust mites, and other microbes.

Flip and Air Out Your Mattress

It’s not just a rumor, your mattress, and your bedroom in general, is the main location for dust mites and other microbes that cause allergy problems. Many mattresses, especially memory foam, trap heat, which make it the perfect warm, damp breeding environment for undesirable microbes. Maintaining a clean mattress year-round is key to a healthy nighttime environment, but flipping and airing out a mattress is advisable a couple times a year.

This can be done by one person, but of course, two people can maneuver an awkward mattress better. Do not rest the mattress on unstable headboards or furniture: instead, lower it to the floor and flip it that way. Now is a great time for your HEPA filter vacuum. Use it on and around the mattress. Some people recommend exposing the mattress to sunlight for several hours, as this kills bacteria, but it can also attract pollen, so use your discretion. If you do put the mattress outside be sure to return it before the sun starts to set as the dew will add even more moisture than before.

If you have had your mattress for over 10 years, it’s likely soiled with all types of allergens. It might be best to get a new mattress all together. And while you’re at it, look into “mite-proof” linens for your bed and pillows.

Get Extra Help

You may have to call in some help this spring with your cleaning, as the droppings and dander of pests, such as mice and cockroaches, are especially troublesome for certain people. Especially if you live in an older home, consider using a quality pest control company to rid your home of excessive spiders, insects, and other rodents.


Step by Step

I wanted a step by step plan to get through this... I wanted a guarantee that if I followed the plan I would be free, the pain would be gone...
I wanted someone to say here let me help you, bless your heart, you have fought for so long, let me take it away.

My counselor couldnt give me a quick fix, i'm sure she wanted to, i'm sure she wished she had a special formula to sprinkle over me...

I'm sure she wanted to fix everything espicially my desire for everything to be ok right now and my refusal to embrace the process of healing.

I knew God would eventually fix me and make everything alright.. He would make something new and wonderful from my dust... I just knew I couldn't live a normal life without freaking out daily.

My counselor broke the news to me that there was simply no easy fix for the problems I faced.  Feeling the pain is the first step toward healing.We can numb it, ignore it or pretend it doesnt exist or face it head on and that is what I am trying to do.

Unexpected reasons you can't lose weight

There can be several things that will make you gain weight and make it harder to lose the excess, that have very little to do with your diet. It can be very disheartening when you are keeping to a calorie controlled diet to put even more weigh on, but this does happen if other things in your life are not right.

Sleeping Problems

Most people would never associate a lack of sleep with gaining weight, but the two are very closely related.  One research study showed that if people can get 8 hours of sleep every night for a year, without altering their diet at all they could lose up to half a stone in weight.

By the same token, if your sleep is constantly interrupted, or you just do not sleep long enough, it is likely to contribute to you gaining weight and make it harder for you to lose the excess.

For instance, if you have a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea, even when you do manage to sleep, it will not be of the best quality. You should seek the help of an ENT specialist in this scenario as they can often treat the condition and help you to get a better night sleep.


Small amounts of stress that we feel in everyday life do not do much harm and some doctors think they are good for us. More stressful or prolonged periods of stress can make your body produce cortisol, which is a stress hormone that protects your body from the tenseness caused by stress.

However, a study by Cell Metabolism has shown a connection between high levels of cortisol and fat mass.  The study revealed that when the levels of cortisol are higher than normal, it might be a contributing factor in weight gain.


There are some medications that are well-known for promoting weight gain. Most birth control pills, high blood pressure tablets and the hormone s used to treat breast cancer will all help the pounds pile on. There are also some arthritis medicines, and some for migraines and heartburn that will lead to weight increases if they are taken on a regular basis.

If you are concerned that your medication may be making you heavier, mention it to your doctor as there may be an alternative they can prescribe.  

Age-Related Weight Gain

None of us can stop getting older and as we do our bodies do not burn calories as efficiently.  The only way to combat this age-related weight gain is to eat less and exercise more. Part of the problem is that as we age our metabolism slows down naturally and exercise helps to keep it on a more even keel.

Also as you age you will lose muscles and sometimes this is replaced by fat. Some older people weigh very little more than they did 10 years ago. However, because muscle weighs more than fat, they could well need to wear clothes that are a couple of sizes larger.

Late Night Eating

There are been many studies into the time meals are eaten and how that affects weight. It seems that the later you eat the more your body holds onto the food and turns it into fat. The data showed that eating the same amount of calories in the evening than you would in the morning, made it more likely that weight would be gained.

They also found that snacking while watching TV in the evenings could lead to much larger amounts of food being eaten, and this, of course, will not help your weight.

Small, Unnoticed Changes

There can be small changes in your lifestyle that you hardly notice but they make a difference to your weight. For example, if you change your job and the new one is less active or you move home and only have to walk half the distance to work, these things can make a difference to how much you weigh.

If you are putting on weight, think about the little changes that have happened over the last few months, as you may be surprised just how many of these have affected your lifestyle and your weight.

The one thing that all the experts agree on is that whatever you eat and however much you exercise, does not matter if you are consuming sugary drinks. The calories in these can mount up very quickly and you can soon surpass the number in the amount of food you eat. No matter how old you are, what medications you take, how much sleep you get or how stressed you are, cut out those sugary drinks if you want to keep your weight down.


Your Guide to Experience the Real NYC

Ladies and gentlemen, there’s a place in the world that’s the capital of practically everything – showbiz,
fashion, music and even food. Yes, we’re talking about the almighty New York City! So, every single
person should visit this spectacular metropolis at least once in their lifetime, but it’s also very important
to know where they’re going. This city is definitely a huge one, and if you don’t do your homework
beforehand, the chances of you ending up in an average club or pub and eating average food are very
high. So, what should you visit in order to experience the real nature of the Big Apple?

What to see?

First of all, you need to allocate a couple of days to see all the landmarks and historical places in New
York City. Let’s say that your first stop would be the Statue of Liberty, and it definitely should be. This
mesmerizing statue is home to thousands of tourists daily, so it will be a perfect first choice. Moreover,
you will definitely take a walk through the Central Park and Manhattan, but make sure to visit them
during the day, as you don’t want to miss out on anything, and you definitely want to experience the
colorfulness of the city. Also, don’t miss out on the Empire State Building, but make sure to allocate a bit
more time so that you could get to the top floor and experience NYC in the right way. Finally, visit the
9/11 memorial, an overwhelming monument to the September 2011 terroristic attacks.

Where to go out?

This is definitely the hardest question to answer as New York City caters for everyone’s needs. First of
all, this is the home to some of the biggest gay bars, so if you’re gay or gay-friendly, you can choose from
gay sport clubs to gay country clubs where only country music is played. As for straight people, you will
be able to find a club or a pub on every corner of New York City. If you want to have the night of your
life, the three most popular NYC clubs at the moment are Village Vanguard, a legendary jazz venue, and
The 40/40 Club which is owned by Jay-Z. These two clubs might be a bit pricier than the rest of them,
but if you want the true NY experience, this is where you should go.

Where to eat and drink?

What’s important is that you never settle for sandwiches and beer in New York. You can have these
anywhere else in the world, so it would be good to try out something new. The first thing that you need
to do is try the NY street food, as it’s truly amazing. Moreover, if you have the chance to experience the
services of a great mixologist in NYC, say yes! Try to find a venue or an event with this type of catering,
cocktails paired with finger food and simply enjoy this amazing experience. You won’t find as good
mixologists as in New York City so it would be a shame not to see what they have to offer.

What to wear?

Fashion is extremely important in New York, but the good thing is that you can wear whatever you want
and still be quite fashionable. Why’s that? Because everyone appreciates the fashion style of other
people while still rocking their own. However, the biggest trend in this moment is athleisure, so pair
your elegant pants with excellent sneakers (if you have the option, go for Balenciaga), or wear a formal
coat and a sweatshirt. If this is not your cup of tea, you can also go with neon colors as they are huge
now. It’s also important to mention that you will never fail while wearing anything in the color of Living
Coral, which is Pantone’s color of the 2019.

What leisure activities should you try out?

Since you will be spending money on bars, pubs and restaurants, it would be good to choose leisure
activities that are practically free. Try visiting the Museum of Modern Arts (MOMA), but make sure that
you go there on a Friday from 4pm to 8pm because the entrance is free. The sculpture garden, however,
is free for entrance every morning from 9.30 to 10. Moreover, if you’re visiting NYC during the summer
and you like cinematography, you can hit the HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival or Syfy Movies with
a View at Brooklyn Bridge Park. Watching a movie in an outdoor cinema in the heart of the Big Apple,
free of charge, is definitely an activity that many opt for! Finally, you can always browse online and find
the best bars that organize trivia nights or scavenger hunts – there is a plethora of them and each one of
them is worth the money!
Writing an article about all the things that you could do in NYC is devastatingly difficult. You might as
well spend 7 months here and you will still have something new to discover and see. So, take your time,
see the most important things and simply enjoy. After all, this is how you will truly experience New York.
© Take A Walk In My Shoes. Design by FCD.