If you’re getting ready to give your home its annual deep-clean, make sure you’re doing so with your (and your family’s) health in mind.
It turns out some common spring cleaning practices can actually put our health at risk. Most cleaning products fail to protect us from a dangerous flaw that lies within their ingredients–while we are warned that direct contact with cleaning products is unsafe, we aren’t told about the lasting effect the chemicals in cleaning products have on the air quality in our homes.
Your home’s indoor air should be it’s cleanest feature–but it usually isn’t. In fact, indoor air can be 5x more polluted than outside–affecting allergies, asthma, concentration, sleep quality, and much more.
It’s especially important to make sure you’re properly spring cleaning your bedroom, since the air quality in your room can actually disrupt your sleep.
Luckily, it’s easy–and cheap–to clean your home the healthy way. To help you get started, we’re creating a series of simple checklists to help you clean your way to a healthy home–one room at a time. If you haven’t checked yet, our Healthy Living Room Checklist and our Healthy Kitchen Checklist is a great place to start.
Or if you’re ready for the next room, read on for our Healthy Bedroom Checklist:
1. Clean Carpet and Rugs with Pure Castile Soap
Are you considering steam cleaning or scrubbing the carpet or rugs in your bedroom? Popular carpet cleaners are filled with a toxin known as perchloroethylene, which has been considered a carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency. Fumes from perchloroethylene can cause dizziness, loss of coordination, and other symptoms. Perchloroethylene is also commonly used in dry cleaners.
Look into alternatives to dry cleaning and carpet spot removers–some dry cleaners offer liquid carbon dioxide as a safe cleaning alternative. Pure castile soap is an effective spot remover, too.
2. Add a Few Air Cleaning Plants
Did you know that too much carbon dioxide in your room can actually decrease your sleep quality? Since each person exhales about 2.3 pounds of carbon dioxide every day, it can accumulate in high numbers in your bedroom at night.
Refresh your room with a few houseplants–the snake plant (above) is actually known to release carbon dioxide over night, making it the perfect plant to help you spring clean your bedroom. Read our list of recommended houseplants here.
3. Opt for Natural Fragrance
Unfortunately, most common paraffin candles are made up of a variety of chemicals–which are all released into the air when the candles are burned. If part of your spring cleaning includes revamping your decor, opt for candles made of beeswax, which burn clean and very little smoke (they burn slower than paraffin candles, too).
4. Dust Properly
Dusting should be on every spring cleaning checklist, since it’s incredibly helpful for reducing allergies, which can be especially strong in the spring. How you choose to dust, however, will determine how effective the dusting is. Avoid using dry dusters, because they’ll spread dust into your air instead of eliminating it. Instead, use a damp cloth to trap your dust on the spot.
5. Update your Thermostat Settings
The changing weather can lead to higher temperatures at night–but this can greatly disrupt our quality of sleep. As you get your bedroom in order, make a note to double-check your nightly thermostat settings. Research tells us that the best room temperature for sleep is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit, so make sure your thermostat is set between this preferred range.