What is the Best Type of Flooring to Choose if You Have Allergies?
What is the best type of flooring for people with allergies is a popular subject these days. That’s because the number of individuals who suffer from some form of allergy is well over 50% of the population. Cutting down on exposure to allergens is important for these individuals and the floor is a perfect place to start.
When taking steps to allergy-proof their home, most people tend to overlook the floor, yet it can be the single biggest source of allergens. That’s because certain types of flooring can provide the perfect breeding ground for common allergens including dust mites, mold and mildew. So, choosing the right flooring for your house can make all the difference when allergies are a concern.
So what is the best type of flooring for people with allergies? That depends on several factors. In general, you want a floor that is resistant to dust mites, mold and mildew and is also free of VOC’s or volatile organic compounds. VOC’s are traces of chemicals left behind when fabrics or surfaces are treated or processed.
Though the pros and cons of various flooring surfaces can vary, one general rule of thumb for allergy sufferers is to avoid carpeting at all costs. The deep pile of most carpets holds allergens from dust mites, mold, pollen, pet dander, grass, dirt and pretty much anything else.
Carpeting also retains moisture, which encourages the growth of mold and mildew. If you must have carpeting, a low pile is much better for avoiding allergens.
Since carpeting is a no-no for allergy sufferers, when considering the best type of flooring for people with allergies, laminate and vinyl flooring is often a popular choice.
While these surfaces certainly offer more allergy control than carpeting, they can be manufactured and treated with chemicals, which can increase your exposure to VOCs. If you opt for laminate or vinyl, try to choose the flooring that is labeled as low VOC and watch what type of adhesive they use.
With more people concerned not only about allergies but also about maintaining the environment, cork and bamboo flooring are taking center stage. These eco-friendly choices are both resistant to mold and mildew and offer no place for dust mites and other allergens to hide. The downside is the eco-friendlier they are the more expensive.
Pretty much any discussion of the best type of flooring for people with allergies ultimately leads to stone, ceramic tile and hardwood. Stone and ceramic tiles are both ideal choices for allergy-free flooring, but the rougher the stone surface, the more dirt they will hold.
Hardwood is a great choice for people with allergies as it is easy to keep clean and provides no chance for mites, mold or mildew to flourish. Once again, a good hardwood floor will cost a pretty penny by in my opinion worth it.
We have tile and laminate flooring in most of our home. One day we will put new tile throughout the entire house. It's easier to keep clean and keeps the house cooler.
There are so many flooring choices out there and there is no reason why you should be limited in your selection simply because you have allergies. Let’s face it, new flooring is a big, expensive and important discussion. Just do your homework and make sure you choose the flooring that will not only look good and last but provide a healthy environment for your family as well.
Wishing you the best of health
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