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Healthy Homes

Type of flooring can affect allergies, expert says

Fri, 11/18/2011 - 07:16

More people suffer from indoor allergies than from seasonal allergies, making the symptoms a year round problem for people, according to James Sublett, chair of the Indoor Allergen Committee for the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. One of the primary triggers can be the type of flooring that is used, The Boston Globe reported.

People tend to choose their flooring options based on design tips or the ease with which the product can be installed. Owners of homes with radiant heating systems may have to adjust their choices because of the technology, but subfloor radiant units allow an owner to put the system under any type of flooring.

This subfloor radiant heating can allow these homeowners to limit the effect that allergies can have on people who enter their residence. They can choose the type of product that is used and the technology has a lack of allergen-producing radiators, heating vents and air ducts that are found in more conventional heating systems.

Sublett noted that the type of flooring that is used can lessen the asthma triggers that exist in the house and eliminate some of the toxins in the air.

"Generally we think smooth surfaces of any type are the best," the expert told the Globe.

Allergens and other particles settle on floors and surfaces of the house and every time people walk across a room they stir settled toxins into the air. Smooth flooring can limit this because less dust will accumulate, Sublett told the newspaper.

Homeowners should also use specific toxin-free products when cleaning their floors, as this can limit the number of other allergens that are produced when trying to rid the surface of dirt and grease, according to the Globe.  

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