Carpets, Good or Bad for Allergies?

For long time carpets has been regarded as the enemy when it comes to allergies and asthma. People living with asthma or allergy symptoms have been advised to remove all carpet in the home because carpet traps allergens. It is believed that this exacerbates the symptoms of these conditions.

In 2005, results of a study conducted by the German Allergy and Asthma Society were published in the German magazine ALLERGIE konkret. The article highlighted the message that wall-to-wall carpet actually improves air quality: “The core result of the study is, however, clear: In a room with a bare floor, the risk of more airborne fine particulate rises, while the use of wall-to-wall carpeting minimizes this risk.”

Most people understand that carpet holds allergens such as dust, dander, hair, etc. But instead of being a drawback, this study suggests that it can be an advantage, especially to those who are sensitive to such allergens. The argument is that carpet holds onto the allergens and does not release them into the air, thereby trapping them where they cannot be inhaled.

Another large study of more than 19,000 people in 18 countries was conducted, and the results published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Their results: Fitted carpets and rugs in the bedroom were related to fewer asthma symptoms and bronchial responsiveness…. 

Another, more recent study was published in 2008 by toxicologist Dr. Mitchell W. Sauerhoff, Ph.D., DABT, titled Carpet, Asthma, and Allergies – Myth or Reality?. His findings: “… based on the available science, carpet does not cause asthma or allergies and does not increase the incidence or severity of asthma or allergies symptoms. In fact, with respect to asthma and allergies, multiple studies have reported fewer allergy and asthma symptoms associated with carpet.”

Off course for carpets to be friendly for allergy and asthma sufferers carpets needs to be regularly cleaned every 6-12 months.

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