I am allergic to something in my home that isn't pollen, dander, or mold.
September 15, 2012 1:35 PM Subscribe
I am allergic to something in my home. The symptoms only show up while I'm at home. I don't know what it could be. Is there something or someone that can figure out for me?
posted by bosco_costanza to Home & Garden (16 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
In July of this year I moved into my first own home. Prior to this I lived with a relative in a house 5 miles away. I had no allergy problems at that house.
I have year-round allergies that are controlled with prescription medication and regular use of a neti pot.
My new-to-me home was built in 2004 and had 2 previous owners. It is a traditional ranch type home in the southern U.S. The kitchen has tile, the living room has laminate wood flooring, and the bedrooms are carpeted. The previous owners did not have pets as far as I know, and they lived in the home for 3 years. The neighborhood is less than 10 years old, so there isn't much mature vegetation.
I have had the carpets professionally cleaned, and had an indoor air quality inspector check the house. He also took air samples to check for toxic mold. The lab results for the air samples indicated that there was no mold in the home.
My symptoms include:
Thickening of the throat/needing to clear my throat before speaking
Restriction of the airway just slightly to be inconvenient but not life threatening
Persistent nose itch (where you feel constant little tickles right outside nostrils)
Eye irritation over time
Inner ear itchiness
Poor sleep quality
When I am outside my home, I feel like there is a "buildup" of some not so pleasant smell inside my sinuses that gradually goes away each time I blow my nose (hard to explain)
My sneezes are different. It's like they aren't as effective or satisfying.
I have noticed that I often feel temporary relief after taking a long hot shower, although I think there are too many things that play into this.
I have cleaned, dusted, and vacuumed as much as is humanly possible and have noticed no improvement in symptoms.
I have been trying to keep the windows open as much possible to circulate air, but this does not seem to help. I still have the above symptoms. I have aired out the home for 24 continuous hours at a time and still had no improvement in symptoms.
The HVAC system does not seem to be responsible. I actually have not been running it and am still noticing symptoms.
As crazy as it sounds, I feel like I am allergic to some THING in the house, whether it is the paint or the woodwork or the countertops, etc.. The difficulty is that I live here now and everything in the home is "new" to my body, so I can't eliminate the possibilities.
Is there some service that can essentially capture a volume of the air inside my home and analyze everything in it? I feel like if I at least knew what was in the air, I could narrow down the sources one by one.