Prevent Allergy Symptoms by Pest-Proofing Your Home

Jennifer Nessel, Assistant Editor
Published Online: Monday, May 13th, 2019
As May is Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is educating homeowners on how to prevent allergen buildup in their homes.
Cindy Mannes, vice president of public affairs for NPMA, explained that when most people think of allergies asthma, they associate them with sensitivities with pollen and grass. However, “common household pests including rodents, cockroaches and dust mites can all exacerbate allergy and asthma symptoms, especially in children," she said. "Controlling pests inside the home is key to staving off potential reactions.”
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of American (AAFA), more than 60 million people in the United States suffer from asthma and allergies, 6 million of those being children. A 2014 study conducted by the AAFA evaluated physician’s views on pests and their recommendations to patients with sensitivities to pest allergens. It found that 97% of allergists surveyed believed a pest-free home was an important step in preventing asthma and allergy symptoms.
The NPMA has released the following guidelines to pest-proof each room in your home in a safe matter:
Cockroaches can exacerbate the symptoms of allergy and asthma sufferers. To prevent an infestation, keep a meticulously clean kitchen, store food in airtight containers and avoid leaving out pet food.
Living Room
Dust mites feed on human and animal dander. Vacuuming at least once a week using a machine with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate) filter can help to prevent them.
Dust mites are most often found in the bed, where dander is most abundant. Wash linens frequently in hot water, and consider encasing pillows and mattresses in allergen-proof covers.
Thanks to an abundance of moisture, pests like cockroaches and rodents are drawn to this room, as it provides a warm, moist environment for populations to thrive. Be sure to routinely clean and cover drains, and fix any leaky pipes to prevent moisture buildup.
Dust mites and cockroaches alike thrive in humidity, so be sure to maintain the humidity level in the house at about 50 percent by properly ventilating basements and crawl spaces, and running a dehumidifier to prevent moisture buildup.
Droppings and dander from rodents such as mice and rats are other common allergens found inside the home, so keeping rodents outside with exclusion methods is important. Be sure to seal any cracks with an appropriate sealant, paying particular attention to areas where utility pipes enter the home.
With all types of pests, it is critical to contact a licensed pest control professional at the first signs of an infestation. 


Could Pests be Triggering Your Asthma and Allergy Symptoms [news release]. Fairfax, VA; May 06, 2019: National Pest Management Association. Accessed May 07, 2019.

Current Issue

The Educated Patient

Bethany Rettberg, NPC
An accurate medical history and a physical exam are critical to rule out more serious conditions.
Bethany Rettberg, NPC
Practitioners should get a detailed medical history and conduct a thorough physical to treat sinus infections.
Jennifer L. Hofmann, MS, PA-C
Providing them with advice can improve control of the disease and reduce hospitalizations, morbidity, and unscheduled health care visits.
Emily C. Hayes, PharmD Candidate
Colds, coughs, and a relentless influx of sick patients in retail health clinics keep the health care providers who work there very busy.
$vacMongoViewPlus$ $vAR$
Contemporary Clinic
MJH Associates
American Journal of Managed Care
MD Magazine
Pharmacy Times
Specialty Pharmacy Times
Targeted Oncology
About Us
Contact Us
Terms & Conditions
Pharmacy Healthcare & Communications, LLC
2 Clarke Drive
Suite 100
Cranbury, NJ 08512
P: 609-716-7777
F: 609-257-0701

Copyright Contemporary Clinic 2019
Pharmacy Healthcare & Communications, LLC. All Rights Reserved.