Your carpets may look clean, but if you stop to really think about it, when was the last time you got them professionally, thoroughly cleaned? It might have been a while back. Since then, you’ve had spills, pets, guests, dirty shoes and crumbs all over your carpet.
Vacuuming is an excellent way to combat bacteria and debris piling up but it might be time to refresh your carpets a bit more deeply to ensure you’re not doing damage to yours and your family’s health. Read on to find out a few interesting ways that having clean carpets can benefit your health.
Improve your air quality
Generally, all your windows and doors will be shut tight when you’re not in the house, this means the air inside will become stagnant without circulation of fresh air and bacteria-killing sunlight from the outside world. As you spend around 90% of your time indoors, it’s essential that your air quality is good to keep you and your family healthy.
A clean carpet can actually act as an air filter, trapping all the dust and allergens floating around in the air. However, when there’s a build-up, simply walking over the carpet will cause layers of all these microscopic bits and pieces to become airborne. This can lead to respiratory issues, cold and flu-like symptoms and even a weakened immune system from prolonged exposure. This is of extra concern to those who already have asthma or other respiratory issues.
Airflow can also be improved with clean carpets. When your carpets are clogged with everyday dust and debris the air cannot be filtered, as mentioned above. This means that the air in your home will become thick and unclean with all these allergens, leaving your rooms feeling stuffy – and nobody likes a stuffy room.
Being diligent about getting your carpets deep-cleaned regularly will help air flow and filtration in your home. Clean air equals a healthier, fresher you – just how you should be!
Banish bacteria and mould
We know, it’s not nice to hear that your carpet could be home to a growing ecosystem of bacteria, mould and germs – but it’s a reality we need to face because ignorance is not bliss in this case! All of these everyday particles can lead to mould and bacteria:
- Dirt, grass and leaves
- Food crumbs
- Spills (wine, milk, cordial, etc.)
- Pet hair
- Dead flakes of skin (you shed these more often than you think!)
- Bodily fluids (sweat, mucus from sneezing/coughing, etc.)
Human beings can’t avoid exposing the majority of items in that list to their carpets, and that’s okay! What’s not okay is when all those particles are left to become mouldy and multiply. Generally you won’t see this happening (unless it’s really bad) but you will feel the effects.
Just like with air pollution, having mould and bacteria grow in your carpet means that anyone who gets their face or hands close to it will be at risk of a huge number of illnesses. Pets, babies and children are the most at risk here as they spend a lot of time on the floor. Deep cleaning of your carpets will help to eradicate the breeding grounds of mould spores and harmful bacteria, reducing the amount of germs that end up in your system.
Reduce allergens and dust mites
This one is a bit gross, but keep reading. Dust mites are tiny critters (smaller than half a millimetre) that like to live in your carpets and furniture. They feed off your dead skin flakes and any crumbs in your carpet – meaning that if your carpets aren’t clean then your dust mite population is going to skyrocket.
Whilst they’re basically harmless, dust mites do leave their waste in your carpets and this can be a common allergen. Dust mites are actually associated with skin and respiratory allergies such as eczema and asthma, so it’s an excellent idea to vacuum weekly to reduce their presence in your home. Keep in mind that you can’t fully eradicate the population, but reducing it will definitely reduce your allergic reactions in turn.
Other allergens that your carpet may collect are dust, pollen and dirt. This is basically unavoidable but when stirred up they can become airborne and cause an allergic reaction. If you’re finding that you’re feeling the effects of your allergies inside the house, this may be what’s happening. As mentioned earlier, clean carpets will actually trap these particles to prevent them from polluting your air.
Carpet care tips and tricks
Now that you know clean carpets are essential for good health, here’s a few tips and tricks for knowing when your carpet needs to be cleaned and how to keep it clean all year round.
Signs that your carpet might need a good clean:
- Funny odours where you can’t quite determine the culprit
- Allergies playing up more than usual
- Discolouration or darker spots (spills, mould patches, etc.)
- You’ve had prolonged wet weather that could lead to mildew and mould when wet shoes are tracked through the house
- You can’t remember the last time you had it cleaned
Tips for keeping your carpets clean:
- Vacuum weekly
- Have professional dry or steam cleaning done every 6 months
- Clean any spills or crumbs as they happen
- Ask guests and family members to remove their shoes before stepping on the carpets
- Don’t let pets inside when they’re dirty or wet and be sure to vacuum more frequently to combat inevitable hair shedding
- Use rugs in high traffic areas like hallways and be sure to wash these regularly
- Purchase a cute welcome mat to encourage guests and family members to wipe their feet before entering your home
- If you’re choosing a new carpet then opt for wool, nylon or polypropylene as these are the easiest to keep clean
Let’s face it, whilst your carpet is basically a giant sponge, there’s a certain comfort to carpeted rooms that makes a space feel inviting and warm. Keep mould, bacteria and mites at bay by vacuuming often and getting your carpets thoroughly deep-cleaned every 6 months. You’ll feel the health benefits from cleaner air to less allergens and nasty build up – plus your carpets will look and feel great!
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