Deck the Halls with… Mold and Dustmites?

Whether the season comes to you few degrees above freezing, snowing, or just a touch of chill in the air, Christmas is fast approaching. Whether you are pulling an artificial tree out of storage or get a fresh cut tree from your local lot, you could be bringing the asthma triggers into the house for the holidays. Fresh trees have been correlated with over 50 types of mold spores in the living area they occupy.1 Artificial are not without their asthma triggers in the form of dust from the storage season to season. Hopefully they aren’t stored somewhere that they’d grow mold. Regardless of what kind of tree you put up the decorations may collect dust in storage.1 All these asthma triggers lurking in the Christmas decorations I can’t help but wonder if perhaps Rudolph’s nose was red from allergies. I’m sure that you didn’t give it a second thought either as you bring a trigger laden tree into your living room. What’s an allergic asthmatic to do?
If you’re allergic to both mold and dust, perhaps you’ll join me in opting out of putting up a tree. A festivus pole of aluminum can easily be stored and cleaned without concern for mold or dustmites. You can still decorate with your favorite ornaments and garlands around the house. You can hang your favorite ornaments using hooks or other creative display options. If either mold or dust triggers your asthma opt for the tree type least likely to bring your problems into the house.

Experts say that you can clean off the tree before bringing it into the house by washing it with water and allowing it to dry or using compressed air.1 Certainly an option to reduce the amount of allergens you bring into the house on the Christmas tree. Definitely something to plan ahead for if it is usually below freezing where you live this time of year. Nothing worse than trying to hose something down only to have the water freeze on you. This seems like a nice option to me as I love the smell of a real tree. Obviously this could short out the lights on a prestrung artificial tree.
Outsource your tree to a relative or friend’s house if you aren’t hosting the holiday festivities. This could be the perfect solution if the experience of trimming the tree and spending time with loved ones is essential to your Christmas. I bet you have a friend or relative in town who would love some help putting up their tree, especially if you bribe them with cookies or eggnog. Dance the garland around the tree and hang all the sentimental ornaments up. It is always more fun to decorate for the season with good company around. However, at the end of the day you can head home to a house without the added dust or mold from the Christmas tree.

I have to admit since I don’t do much holiday entertaining and carols are my favorite part of the season it doesn’t bother me skip putting up a Christmas tree. Do you have favorite ways to avoid asthma triggers at Christmas?

1 http://www.christmastreeassociation.org/allergic-to-the-holidays/

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