If you suffer from allergies, you may have been drawn to hardwood floors for their ease at cleaning dust mites and dander. Carpet, though entirely cleanable, is still known to trap dust and dirt that even the most expensive of vacuums can't remove completely. The problem with hardwoods is that they are not energy-efficient and are just plain cold at certain times of the year. Warmth is still attainable with these 4 tips for selecting a rug when allergies are a consideration:
1. Assess your needs. Where is the rug going? There are several different rug materials and each can function in some areas better than others. Wool, for instance, is very durable and works well in high-trafficked areas. It also happens to be a material that some are allergic too, however. If you have a wool-allergen, you would be advised to avoid tufted rugs as they tend to shed and the wool fibers may cause irritation for the allergy-sufferer.
2. Are you allergic to natural grasses? Natural fiber rugs such as jute and sisal are popular for their neutral tones and clean, minimalist look. If tolerable, these make a great alternative in living spaces and under foot in the bedroom.
3. Maintenance. Proper care of your rugs insure longevity and keep your home fresh. Be sure to roll your rugs periodically and clean the surfaces beneath them. Particles that may become lodged beneath the rug can cause damage to the backing over time. A good pad will not only adhere the rug to the floor but not mark your floors and protect them from the daily use the rug is getting. Proper cleaning will also rid the rug and surrounding floors from any dust and germs that may be irritating.
4. Machine made rugs may be the answer. If you are allergic to wool or natural fibers, a machine made rug may be best. Machine made rugs are easy to clean, do not shed their content, and are made from synthetic fibers. Due to the synthetic nature these rugs are also known to be made with vibrant colors that will retain their color over time.
Do not feel discouraged if you are one of the one in five* persons that suffer from allergies. Though we may have to do a little extra dusting here or there (face masks may or may not be donned), there are still many beautiful options out there to dress our floors with!
Written By: Samantha Palacio
* Statistic from WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/allergies/allergy-statistics