Winterizing Your Home

It’s the start of the cold season, soon enough there will be snowstorm and frozen lakes because of the negative temperature. New season means that you should be prepared for two things: the cold and the hot. Here’s our winterizing tips to prepare your home for the coming of winter:

Winter Preparation

1. Flush the water heater

This is something that is often forgotten. As you know, the water filter, filters out the sediment and particles and it settles usually at the bottom of it. When not cleaned regularly, this may cause the water heater to decrease its efficiency and might also increase your electricity bill. Winter is the best time to flush it out as it is expected that you will use more hot water than before. In order to clean it you just need to clear out the drain valve by flushing it with water and you’re done.

2. Programmable Thermostat

One of the best things that you could buy this winter (and is also very helpful) is the programmable thermostat. It lets you know the current temperature inside your home and it also tells you if it is within the ideal temperature. Also, this can lessen your electricity bill because as for every degree you lower the temperature of your home, it also lower’s your winter bill.

3. Clear the Yard

If you are a green thumb, I bet you already trimmed and prepared your garden for the coming fo the cold season. If you’re not, well I guess this is the perfect time for you to spend some time at your yard and cut some long branches of the tree, remove dead leaves and branches and just clear out your garden. Make sure that you leave nothing in there that can potentially damage any of your property, as snowstorms tends to be strong enough to do harm.

4.  The Garden Hose

We are used to leaving the garden house where it is supposed to be – the garden. During winter, the hose can freeze and clog it making it not useful. To be able to use it for the next months or so, make sure to drain the water inside the hose and store them away, maybe inside your garage or somewhere it will not freeze. While you’re at it, shut the water valves properly and insulate the faucet.

5. Test your detectors

Fire is not just common in summer but also in winter! There are many reported fire accidents during winter because of overuse of heater or improper use of the fireplace. To avoid and prevent any fire hazard, store your flammable materials somewhere safe and don’t forget to replace your smoke detector’s battery as it may not be working anymore. It is also an option to install a carbon monoxide detector for added protection.

6. Weatherproof

Winter is the best season to weatherproof your home. Aside from making sure that the cold air does not go inside your home, weatherproofing also maintains the heat inside the home – less energy usage. The first thing to check is always the windows and doors. Install a weather stripper to the gaps to prevent the heat from going out. Also, check for spaces in between cupboards and cabinets that may have leakage or holes you may need to fill. You may use caulk to fill in those extra gaps that the weather stripper cannot fit into. Insulating your home is the best way to keep you and your family warm during this cold season.

7. Clockwise Ceiling Fan

This may be the best home hack there is during winter. Ceiling fans gives us comfort during all seasons except on winter which we may find it not useful. People found a great way of using it during the cold season, you just need to make it rotate on the different direction it usually does. Doing so, will help it maintain the heat at home and lessen your energy usage.

8. Outdoor equipment

Men love to buy power tools and string trimmers, but do they store it correctly? Probably not. In order for it to be in a good condition when needed, proper storage and maintenance of the equipment should be followed.  This is the best time to check on them if they are still working. You may use one or two this winter season. Also, don’t forget to stock up on some ice melt, they are a must in winter.

9. Embrace the Sun

We all know that the sun’s ray gives us warmth. Why not let the sunshine in inside your home? It does not only lighten up your home, but it also warms the house. This is the best time to love the sun and keep your curtains on the side. 

10. Save on your Energy Bills

Since the winter season makes you want to use all kinds of heater, it means that your energy consumption may be higher than usual. To counter this, you may consider shifting to LED lights from a traditional one as it is proven to be more efficient. Also, wear your winter wardrobe even at home as it gives you extra warmth lessening your use of the heater. Lastly, make sure to winterize your home to prepare it for the coming season and for you not to have unnecessary expenses when the cold cause damage to your home because you forgot to prepare for it.  

Winter Energy Saving Tips For The Home

The winter season is just around the corner and you are wondering whether or not your house is ready for it yet. As much as winter means skating and snowballs, it is also a season for your home to be ready for warm and relaxation that is brought by the cold breeze. We listed down energy saving tips that can save some of your money during the next 3 to 4 months:

Energy Saving Tips

1. Switch your ceiling fans blade rotation.

I bet you never thought about which direction the span is spinning. Changing the ceiling blade rotation is actually helpful to save you some money. When the ceiling fan rotates counterclockwise, the fan will prevent the rising of the hot air contributing to the warmth of the room.

2. Upgrade your fireplace.

Having a fireplace during the winter is the best place to be especially with the negative temperature outside. Most of the fireplace made before uses wood in the fireplace and costs much higher than the new fireplace. Upgrade your fireplace to an EPA certified model, it will not only conserve energy but also you might even receive a tax credit for it.

3. Let the sunshine it.

Most people do not appreciate the sun as much as they do especially in winter. Take advantage of the warm rays of the sun by letting the heat naturally enter your home by drawing the curtains. Letting the sun in not only makes the room warm but also lighten up the room.

4. Weatherproof your windows.

During winter, you may not notice it but some of the heat inside may go out through the spaces in between the windows or the doors. If you don’t have the budget to upgrade your windows and doors to a weatherproof one. You may opt to buy a clear plastic film or a weather proofer and apply it on the windows and doors. This simple and cheap trick will save about 14% of the heating bill.

5. Get selective with a space heater.

If you found yourself rarely at home, you may invest on a portable space heater and use it on areas where most of the people in the house stay like the living room and bedrooms. The portable space heater is not only keeping you warm, but it also reduces your heating costs.

6. Wear winter clothes.

Winter is not all about the the snow and the cold weather. It is also the time for you to rock some of your winter wardrobe that were only hidden in your cabinet for months and waiting for this season to come. Wearing the appropriate clothes at home during winter also lessens the energy needed as it keeps your body warm without using any electricity. Don’t forget to use your favorite fuzzy socks, matching PJs and your cute earmuffs!

7. Avoid using your exhaust fans.

During winter, it is not ideal to use the exhaust fans at your home. It may have been useful in the previous months but during winter you should turn it off. The exhaust fan may cause heat loss in your home as it pulls the warmth inside your home and bring it outside. Save your kitchen and bedroom exhaust for the seasons after winter.

8. Change the old bulbs with LEDs.

If your home is still not using LED bulbs, then you should make the switch now. Winter is the perfect time to do this because LED lights are known to save much energy than the traditional light bulbs. Aside from lighting up your home, it will also lessen your electricity bill for months.

9. Invest in a good thermostat.

You already have so much spending this holiday, why not spend on a vital part of your home – a smart thermostat. Having a thermostat is not only useful during the winter season but all throughout the year. Knowing the temperature at home can help you determine when you need to open the air conditioner or the heater. It decreases energy use by almost 12%. The optimal temperature at home during winter at home should be around 10 to 15 degrees Celsius.

10. Look for Leaks.

Aside from the spaces between the door or window, there are other areas that can cause seepage of heat from gaps around the chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceiling and unfinished spaces in between cupboards and closet. It is important to determine the cause of air leaks so that you can use weather stripper to seal the air leaks.

11. Clean the Air Ducts and Fernace filters.

This is one of the simplest energy-saving tips for winter. Clean the air duct that has been clogged by dirt in previous months. A clogged air duct will prevent the air from coming to and from the house. The furnace filters are advised to be cleaned or replaced monthly especially during the winter season. Like the clogged airduct, a dirty filter blocks the flow of heat and can cause your electricity bill to increase.

Let us know if you tried one of the things on the list and if it works!

Winterizing Your Garden

It’s the start of the cold season and soon enough we’ll be welcoming the snow breeze of winter. Some loves the season, while some don’t because the temperature during this time reaches the temperature as low as 0C or even a negative. Flowers and plants react differently every season, how can we help them get ready for the heavy snow?  

Seasons in the UK

In the United Kingdom, there are four seasons that happens in a year: Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. Spring starts at March, April, and ends on May. The hot summer then follows on June, July and ends at August. The beach and pool are popular during this season to beat the summer heat. The cold breeze starts again on Autumn at the month of September, October and ends in November. Autumn is usually the best season to travel and go around the country as it is not too cold nor too hot. Finally, the winter season starts, and everyone are getting ready to put up their Christmas decors. Expect to experience extreme cold and snow. This is the time where everyone can play with the snow and go ice skating or skiing.

Preparing for Wintering

If you are a green-thumb or your work or business is related to the garden, then you are probably familiar with winterizing. For some, this might be a new thing. Winterizing means that that you are preparing something, specifically your garden, in the cold weather.  This is done to reduce the amount of work that you will face during the cold season itself. Here’s a few things you should take note of:

Clean-up Rotting and Finished Plants

Seeing the dead plants on your backyard is not only an eyesore but it can also be a source of disease or illnesses. Old plants are capable of harboring disease, pests and funguses that once you come in contact with can cause you to become ill. Remove the plants from the soil surface and bury them in the garden trenches, this helps prevent pests from laying their eggs on it. It is also an added fertilizer for your healthy plants, improving the overall soil quality and health.

Remove the Weeds

Weeds grow everywhere. This is the best time to deal with them as these invasive weeds harms your garden. Removing them is the only way to prevent them from sprouting all over again on your garden and disrupting it.

Prepare the Soil

Autumn is the great time to dig in the soil amendments like the compost, kelp, manure and even rock phosphate. Adding these serves as nutrients for the soil, enriching it and making the soil ready for when the garden dries out on winter for the first time after a long time. You can also toil the soil to improve the drainage before the sudden changes in the temperature when winter comes. Cover the bed after with a sheet of plastic to protect them from the winter rains that might come. The rain washes away the compost and lessens its effectiveness. Remove it when the spring comes.

Plant Cover Crops

Crops that are ideal for the season are rye, vetch and clover because these crops can prevent the soil erosions cause by the extreme cold weather. It also increases the amount of organic matter in the soil and also serves as the soil’s food. Legume, on one hand, are known to increase the level of the available nitrogen for the vegetables in your garden. Make sure to plant these crops at least a month prior to the first frost.

Plant your Bulbs

Planting bulbs is not really easy, and many gardeners are having a hard time planting them because the soil may be too hard, or they never got the plant it deep enough. Plant them before winter starts and deep enough to have a good protection for the winter and for them to bloom wonderfully when spring comes.

Water is your Plant’s Best Friend

Before the pipes gets ice-cold why not give your plants water? Do this on the new trees, shrubs and even perennials. This extra help will help your plants bear with the cold ground. For better timing, water them a week or two prior to a snow or frost forecast. After using the hose, make sure that they are empty and there is no water left in the gardening supplies to prevent them from getting freeze and damage by the cold.

Winter Jacket

People are not the only ones who wear a jacket! Winter jackets are made to protect the trees and other plants from the harsh wind brought about by the weather. There are two types of the jacket: Fleece and cones. They are put over the plant. Don’t forget to secure them properly so they will not blow off during the most frigid days.

Clean your Garden tools

Keep your tools clean and well-oiled all throughout the year. This is the best season to take care of these tools as you can’t use them most of the months because of the extreme weather. Begin cleaning by washing of the debris and dust off the tools. If rusts are present, use a sandpaper to remove it or a chemical remover and spray it all over the tool. Remove the debris of the rust and apply light machine oil on them to seal the metal oxygen and extend the lifespan of your tools.

The Difference Between Bed Bugs and Dust Mites

Bed bugs and dust mites are just a few of the most common unwanted guests in our home. They might be the cause of the little red bites that you can see all over your body. That’s not only itchy but it doesn’t look good too. So, what is the differences between these two?

Dust Mites vs. Bed Bugs

image of bed bug and dust mite

Dust mites are so small they are often microscopic. They are insect-like pests that commonly lives in the house. They usually feed on the shredded skin of people and pets. Dust mites loves a warm and moist environment and often thrive at temperatures between 68 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity of at least 70 to 80%. The temperature at home is just right making it the ideal place for them to stay. They often find their way into the inner layers of your favorite furniture, carpets, bedding and even stuffed toys.

Meanwhile, bed bugs are small, oval, brownish insects that are visible to the naked eye. These insects live on the blood of animal and humans. Adult bed bugs often have a flat body but after feeding it swells and becomes reddish in color. Bed bugs do not fly but are fast crawlers and can move fast between walls, ceilings and floors. Bed bugs hides on luggage, clothing, mattresses and sofas. They often stay on the headboard or on the bed itself so that they have easy access to people when they feed.

Symptoms of Dust Mites

Like bed bugs, Dust mites is also considered as an allergen because it triggers an allergic reaction. Dust mites may die on the extremes of temperature, but their waste and bodies stay behind. Once a person inhales them or touches their skin, this can trigger an allergic reaction. Dust mite allergy may also trigger your asthma. Common dust mite allergy symptoms are the following:

  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Itchy, red or watery eyes
  • Stuffy nose
  • Itchy nose, mouth or throat
  • Itchy skin
  • Postnasal drip (A flow of mucus at the back of your nose that goes through the throat)
  • Cough

Symptoms of Bed Bugs

scratching bed bugs bites on legs

The bed bugs can bite anywhere on an exposed skin. They often bite the neck, face, hands, shoulders, arms and legs as they are not covered by clothing. People do not feel the bite itself until they develop symptoms such as:

  • A burning or painful sensation
  • Raised itchy bump with a clear center
  • Red itchy bump with a dark center and swollen sides
  • Small spots of blood from bites often dried or stained onto sheets or bed clothing

The symptoms of bed bugs depend on the individual characteristics of the bug’s bite and the person who was bitten by it. It may also cause serious reactions and might require medical attention.

Treatments

putting anti-itch cream on hand

You cannot control how your body reacts to the allergen like the bed bugs or dust mites. It is still important to be ready when the need of medication arises. There are certain over-the-counter medications that may help reduce the reaction cause by the bites of the dust mites and bed bugs.

Antihistamines – these are readily available at the drug store and has a variety from pills to liquids and nose sprays. Antihistamines helps relieve the sneezing and itching of the nose and the eyes. It also reduces the mucus production therefore, lesser nasal stuffiness.

Anti-itch Cream – these are topical medications that helps lessen the redness and inflammation caused by the dust mites or bed bugs’ bites.

Decongestants – these are effective in relieving the nasal stuffiness. It helps shrink the lining of the nasal passages therefore making it easier for you to breathe through your nose. Some decongestants can make you feel sleep and might increase your blood pressure as its side effects.

If none of the medications above can relieve the symptoms you are experiencing, you might need to consult with the doctor to be given the appropriate medications and treatment.

Prevention

vacuuming under the bed

1. Cover your mattress with tight-fit fitted sheet and pillows qin zippered dust-proof covers. The materials of these are capable of preventing the dust mites and bed bugs to pass through. Meaning, it is allergen impermeable. Bed bugs are able to live for a year without feeding so make sure that you cover your mattress for at least a year to make sure all the bed bugs are dead.

2. Wash your bed sheets and linens regularly in hot temperature. Extremes of temperature can eradicate the dust mites and bed bugs that are lingering on them.

3. Use certified filter vacuum cleaners. Not all vacuum cleaners are effective against dust mites and bed bugs. Buying the right type of vacuum filter can help keep the mites and bug’s waste from getting to the air. Make sure to immediately place the vacuum cleaner bag in a plastic bag and dispose it.

4. Get rid of the clutter that surrounds your bed. Vacuuming and washing of sheets is not enough. Clean your surroundings first as to not invite more insects that can possibly pester you and live in your home. Also, a large amount of dust mites and bed bugs may be staying on the chairs, cabinets, pillows and carpeting so make sure you remove or clean anything that they can stay on.

How To Get Rid Of Dust Mites

Did you ever wake up in the middle of the night because of the bite marks all over your body? Did you try changing your bed linen but still to no avail? We listed down the most effective ways on getting rid of dust mites that will probably change your sleep forever!

What are Dust Mites?

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, one of the most common triggers of allergies and asthma attacks at home is the dust mites. Dust mites are tiny bugs that commonly lives on house dust. They are close relatives of ticks and spiders and cannot easily be seen by the naked eye. Dust mites fed on the shredded skin by the people and thrive on warm environment. This makes the bed or your mattress the ideal place for the dust mites to hide.

Dust mite allergy is a common problem of people with sensitive body. Symptoms of dust mite allergy include sneezing, runny nose, wheezing cough, red eyes, and even difficulty of breathing. These are common signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction.  Most often than not, the allergic reaction caused by dust mites can be reversed by your anti-allergy medications but if it persists, you may need to visit the doctor immediately.  

Ways to get rid of Dust Mites

Lower the Temperature and Humidity

Dust mites thrive on a warm and moist environment. Dust mites like it when the humidity of the room/house is greater than 50%. If it’s less than 50 percent, they may have a hard time living in the comfort of your home. The ideal room temperature is between 65 to 72 degrees Farenheit. Make sure to keep the humidity of your home low. You might want to consider buying a dehumidifier if necessary, to further decrease the humidity of your home.  

On days when the weather is dry, you may open your windows to allow good ventilation of your room. Aside from keeping your room smell fresh, opening your window also helps in reducing the humidity of your room.

Cleaning is your Best friend

As much as you love or hate cleaning, this might be your best friend when it comes to stopping the dust mites from thriving at your home. Cleaning your house thoroughly and dusting the areas that are often exposed at least 1-2x weekly will help in eradicating your enemies. You might also consider using a damp cloth to avoid spreading the dust mites in the air when you are dusting. Make sure to wash the cloth at high temperature or dispose it after use.

Hot Temperature is Recommended

As dust mites cannot survive in temperature more than 130 degrees Fahrenheit, you may want to wash your beddings at high temperature. This will ensure that the dust mites that might be present on your cushions, linens or rugs will be eliminated and washed away by the heat of the water. Also, adding a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil to the wash will help remove at least 99% of the dust mites that are present in the beddings.

Freeze Them!

Some fabrics cannot be washed on high temperature like silk or stuffed toys. But this should not hinder you from eliminating the dust mites that are thriving in them. If these items can fit in your freezing, you might want to try this hack. Place the items on a container or a zip lock and freeze them for a day. Dust mites doesn’t love an extremely high temperature. The freezing temperature is enough to kill each one of them. After freezing it, use a vacuum and thoroughly clean each item to remove what’s left on them. If possible, you can still wash them in low temperature.

Diatomaceous Earth can do Wonders

Diatomaceous Earth is a naturally occurring, soft, siliceous sedimentary rock that can easily be crumbled to a fine white sand. It is often used as a pesticide as it absorbs the oils and fats from the cuticle of an insect’s exoskeleton causing them to die. It also has sharp edges which are abrasive and is not harmful for humans but deadly for insects – such as the dust mites!

You may sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth powder on carpet rugs, mattresses, beddings and sofa to better eliminate these unwanted visitors. Leave it for a few hours or better, overnight before cleaning it up using a vacuum. You can use it as often as you want.

Keep your Houseplants to a Minimum

Having houseplants does not only make your house feel and smell fresh but also keeps the air clean. Not all houseplants are recommended because some can trigger allergic reactions. You might want to consider on investing on air-purifying plants such as Peace Lilies, Golden Pothos, Philodendron, and Dracaena. Fun Fact: It can also help you have a better sleep at night!

Essential Oils

Essential oils are compounds extracted from plants that captures the plants scent and flavor. It is more commonly used as an aromatherapy treatment either via inhaling them or applying it on your skin.  These essential oils have anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal properties which can be used in eliminating dust mites. Make your own mite spray by using tea tree oil or eucalyptus oil and mix it with water. Spray them on areas where dust mites hide. The smell is not only refreshing but is also relaxing for the body.

Vacuum!!

Vacuuming is more important than you think it is. It is a great way of reducing the dust mites and also makes it easier for you to clean the house. Here are some tricks that can make cleaning with a vacuum easier:

  • Choose a vacuum cleaner that has HEPA filter to decrease the dust emission from it.
  • Vacuum at least 2x a week and thoroughly clean areas where dust often accumulates such as under the bed or near the door.
  • Wear a mask when cleaning to avoid inhaling the dust that was dispersed. If you are allergic to dust, hire someone who does not have allergies.
  • Wet vacuuming or steaming is effective in removing mites and their dropping on rugs and carpets.

How To Choose The Perfect Mattress

It is recommended to change your mattress every 8 years. Buying a new one is easy but getting the right one for you may be hard especially if you don’t know what you are looking for. We made a definitive guide in buying a mattress that will probably change your view with sleeping.  

Choosing a Mattress

There are several factors that one should consider for having a good night’s sleep such as comfort, stress, diet, the environment and even sleeping on the right mattress. To ensure that you buy the right one, here are some things you should consider:

Measure Up – Whether you already have a bed and just want to change its mattress, or you are just planning to buy one. It is important for you to know what size your mattress is as it comes in a range of sizes – single, double queen and king.

Know your Budget – A mattress is a long-term investment and you’ll probably use it for 8 years or more. Aside from that, you will also spend most of your nights here therefore you need to buy the best quality of mattress there is, but it should fit within your budget. Make sure to let the salesperson know so that they will be able to give you a good but economical one.

Bring your Partner – If you share a bed, it is important that both of you will agree on what mattress you will buy. You should also consider your preferences and agree on what to buy together.

Comfort – Make comfort your goal. It is the most important part of buying a mattress. We spend more time on the bed than in doing other things that’s why you need to buy a comfortable bed. A good mattress will not only support your body on whatever position you want but also helps keep your body in alignment. Try spending 10 minutes lying on the mattress in your sleeping position to know if it gives the right amount of comfort that you needed.

Allergens – If you have a quite sensitive body, you might need to consider looking for a mattress that has a hypoallergenic quality. This is to prevent any allergic reactions from whatever material that your bed might have.

Consider your Bed – Bed and mattresses should work together. Also, the bed should be able to accommodate whatever is the weight of your mattress and should provide a good foundation for your mattress

A Good Mattress

  • A good mattress helps keep you back in alignment and perfectly conforms to your body shape. It does not cause curvature of the spine or should not cause high pressure on your hips and shoulder.
  • It gives your back proper support and alleviates your back pain.
  • Has a good temperature and moist control. It should not cause you to sweat or be too cold.
  • Lastly, it lets you sleep comfortably throughout the night with no pain and body aches in the morning.

Mattress Types

Innerspring Mattresses

This type of mattress is readily available on the market and has a lot of styles to choose from. It has different range of firmness and is economical. Because of its wide range of brands and types, it is advised not to buy the cheapest innerspring mattress there is on the market as it may not have the same support like the others. For someone who has quite a heavy weight, spring mattress provides a firmer support making it easy to get in and out of the bed.

Memory Foam Mattresses

This type of mattress molds to the shape of your body as your weight shifts when you sleep at night. Also, memory foam was proven to reduce pressure points and relive back pain. Since memory foam is a good movement absorber, sleeping with your partner will not disturb you especially when they get out of the bed to pee. The only common complaint with this mattress is that it is temperature sensitive and might make you feel extremely hot during the night. Lastly, it has a arduous smell unlike the others.

Latex Mattresses

Latex might be one of the best materials for a mattress because it is not only firm enough but also provides support and comfort like the memory foam but in much affordable price. The only disadvantage of is its firmness so if you are not a fan then this might not be the mattress for you.

Air Mattresses

This mattress is advisable for couples who have different preferences when it comes to a mattress because of its unique quality of changing the firmness level of each side of the bed. Avoid making it too firm as it might cause you to wake up at night due to back aches.

Adjustable Beds

This bed is ideal for people who have a difficulty getting in and out of the bed or for those who often watch Television before going to sleep. Adjustable beds make it easier for you to move closer wherever you want to be. It also causes you to sleep flat on the bed which is not a good idea especially if you are suffering from sleep apnea or acid reflux.

Sofa Beds

The most convenient bed there is. It’s multifunctionality allows you to use it as a bed or a sofa whichever is needed. It is advisable for naps and such but not for long-term sleeping as the mattress of it is very thing and the springs are quite weak.

How Often You Should Change Your Mattress

Almost one-third of your life is spent sleeping on your comfortable mattress. It plays a valuable role in your everyday life and gives you the comfort you needed after a tiring day at work or after binge watching TV series. Sleeping on a comfortable mattress affects your everyday energy and mood. We listed down a few things that will help you determine if you need a change of mattress or not.

Signs that you should Change your Mattress

Do you still have a good night’s sleep?

If sleeping becomes uncomfortable for you and you wake up in the morning with body stiffness, aches, pains and even filled with tick bites all-over your body, your mattress may not be providing the level of support, comfort and protection that your body needs to have. A torn-out mattress will lessen your comfort while sleeping which may affect your day by feeling worn-out and sleep-deprived.

Does it cope with the changes in your body?

Did you a get a couple of pounds heavier or lighter compared to your weight a few years back? If you noticed a certain change on your body, and you think that your mattress is not able to support your body anymore, you might consider getting a new mattress. This can also be applied to a kid’s mattress which they outgrow as they get older. Mattresses can’t adapt by themselves to the growing body of a kid.

Does your mattress have a visible wear and tear?

If you can feel springs when you lie down and there are dips left on the mattress even after you got out of the bed. It is a definitive sign that you should change your mattress. You might also hear a creaking, squeaking sound when you go over the bed then that means that it is not on a sound condition and using it might harm your back.

Does your mattress keep you awake at night?

People age and so is your mattress too. As it ages, its ability to reduce the motion transfer like it previously did before declines. This causes much problem especially when it is a shared bed. It lessens the support it can give to two sleepers.

Is your mattress a home for dust mites or bed bugs?

Ever woke up feeling itchy all-over your body because the bed bugs made you a meal during the night? These bed bugs or dust mites loves to live in a warm and moist place and they also feed on dead skin cells. Also, a worn out and old mattress can accumulate a lot of dirt and allergens which can trigger allergic reactions and even asthmatic attack. There are many ways to remove these unwanted guests on your mattress but most of it doesn’t work when your bed has visible wear and tear.

Is your mattress older than 8 years old?

The sleep council strongly advice to replace mattresses every 8 years. During this time, the original comfort and support that it provided you previously has declined and can no longer maintain it. A mattress may just be hidden under a fitted sheet throughout its life, but we cannot remove the fact that it has become an important part of our daily lives.

If your answer is YES to almost every question above, you might need to consider saying goodbye to your old mattress and welcome a new and ergonomic mattress that will provide you good sleep for the next 8 years.

Tips for a Better Mattress Health

To ensure that your mattress will have a longer life than intended, here are some tips that you should follow:

  • Make sure that your bedroom is well-ventilated and always keep the windows open in the morning. This lets the air move in and out of your room with ease while providing a great temperature for your mattress.
  • When washing the fitted sheet, comforters and pillowcase, make sure to wash them on a hot temperature (about 60C or more). To make sure that any bacteria or germs living on the sheet will be eradicated.
  • You may use a mattress protector, waterproof or not. This will help prevent the mattress from being soiled by liquids or fluids that may seep through the inside of the mattress causing damage to its components. For better hygiene, regularly wash it.
  • During summer, where nights are warmer and a lot of sweating may have occurred, do not make your bed right away. Leave the bed uncovered and ideally, the duvet should be hanged somewhere where it will dry fast. In this way, the sweat that the sheet absorbed will dry fast lessening the chances of the bacteria from reproducing on the bed.

Benefits of Waterproof Mattress Protector

coffee spilling on waterproof matress protector

Ever experienced having tick bites all-over your body after a good night sleep? Or did your child pee while sleeping and you woke up in a smelly and wet bed? Worry not because we just found the perfect solution for saving your well-loved mattress.

What is a Mattress Protector?

Mattress protectors are used as a barrier around your mattresses to protect you from almost everything. The warm mattress is a good thriving environment for allergens like dust mites which can trigger asthma or eczema attacks. The mattress protector prevents you and your bed from waking up on a pool of pee and from having itchy tick bites all-over your body. Aside from that, waterproof mattresses also prolong the mattress’ life. It is a good investment because it ensures that you will have a comfortable sleep after a tiring day at work.

 Types of Mattress Protectors

mattress protector

Fitted mattress protectors – This type of protectors is easy to use. It is like a bottom sheet, so you just need to tuck them around the mattress. It is easy and quick to remove especially when it needs cleaning or changing.

Waterproof mattress protectors – this type of protectors is recommended as a protective cover for your child’s bed. It’s waterproof quality offers protection against any kind of spills and stains. Also, it reduces the ability of the molds to grow on your mattress prolonging its life.

Polyurethane mattress protectors – This mattress protector is soft and fine. Some of it has a waterproof option, depending on which style or brand you’ll buy. It is made with comfort in mind because of its breathable reverse which does not cause sleep interruption that is caused by other waterproof protectors.

Polypropylene mattress protectors – This mattress protector may be the lightest of all the others. It also provides the same use as the others and but its advantage is its low moisture absorption which makes it easier to clean and remove stains.

Choosing a Waterproof Barrier

Getting a waterproof protector may be life changing especially for first-time parents. It will lessen your laundry and also saves your mattress from drowning from your child’s pee. In purchasing a waterproof mattress protector, these are things you should consider:

  • Mattress pads with a vinyl barrier

This type of waterproof mattress cover is often not breathable but is much cheaper. Cleaning it may take more time than usual because of its design and also it is quite hot to sleep on because it has high moisture absorption. It also makes a squeaky sound or feeling when you move on the bed.

  • Mattress pads with a urethane barrier

This type of waterproof mattress barrier may cost more but it is the most comfortable as it allows heat transfer which means that it stays cool on summers and warm on winter. It doesn’t also make a sound when you move on the bed unlike the vinyl type. Cleaning it is easy as it is washed fast and dries quickly. Lastly, its quality ensures you that it will last for a long time.

Why buy a Waterproof Mattress Protector?

bed bugs bites
Bedbug bites

Protection against Soiling

Waterproof mattress protectors does not only provide a water-proof environment for your bed but also acts a barrier against dirt. Its designed to prevent invasion of the bed from bed bugs, bacteria and dirt that may cause you harm.

Allergy Control

Waterproof mattress protector is beneficial for people who have sensitive skin and is asthmatic because it limits their exposure from possible allergens. People who often wake-up with red tick bites all over their body will definitely benefit from this as bed bugs and dust mites flourish on areas where people live and thrive on shredded skin. For best protection, buying a waterproof mattress cover that provides total encasement of the mattress is recommended.

Cushioning

Waterproof mattress protectors are designed to provide extra cushioning and support to the sleepers. There are different materials that is used for waterproof mattresses like cotton, cotton cover with silk, feather and synthetic fibre filling. Quilting these mattress covers helps hold the filling in place and prevent occurrence of uneven padding. Remember that waterproof mattresses that provides extra cushion should not be washed on the laundry but should be dry cleaned only.

Prolongs the Mattress’ Life

Waterproof mattress cover provides extra protection for your mattress and prevents it from wear and tear. Hence, extending its life. Also, it prevents the fluids from going into your mattress which may cause damage on the coil springs and the like inside your mattress.

House Cleaning Tips and Tricks

Cleaning may be the hardest house chore ever, but it is also the most fulfilling one. It may seem as a fairly self-explanatory task but there are a lot of tips and trick to make cleaning easier! We’ve listed down a few that we think will be useful in doing so.

Time-Saving Tips

Can somebody tell me why there isn’t an actual guide for cleaning? Cleaning the house takes a lot of time if you don’t know where to start. Knowing where to start and what to clean will lessen your time doing the task and more time for other things that needs prioritization too.

Toothbrush cleaning keyboard

1. Cut the Clutter

Before starting anywhere, make sure to de-clutter all the scattered mess around you. Reorganize your things especially on your desk or the kitchen. This not only make your room organized but it also helps decreasing the cleaning process.

2. A Toothbrush can make a change

We all know that the toothbrush is used for brushing, but did you also know that it is an effective cleaning tool? Its brush helps reach areas that can’t be cleaned by the vacuum or any sponge or cloth. It is not only handy but also inexpensive (saving you lots of money!).

3. Microfiber Cloths

Maybe one of the best inventions ever made is the Microfiber. It is easy to clean, absorbs water fast and dries surfaces faster. It lessens the rinsing time of the cloth meaning more surfaces can be cleaned!

4. Start with the Cleanest, End with the Dirtiest

Start cleaning the “cleanest” or most organized room in your house. It is imperative to start at the cleanest area to avoid cross-contamination of bacteria all-over your home. Imagine cleaning your bathroom first then your bedroom after. You are spreading germs all over your house! This is not only a dirty way of cleaning but it can also be a source of disease in your family.

5. Clean the Drapes

Oh, but not the way you’re thinking. You don’t need to put it on the laundry. Every heard of vacuuming the drapes. It takes much less time cleaning it and far easier to vacuum the dusts that is sticking on the drapes.

6. Vacuum, then Mop

Sweeping the floor is quite the traditional way of cleaning one’s home but maybe people needs an upgrade. Just like how sweeping works, vacuuming also does the job pretty well. Don’t forget to mop after!

7. Don’t Forget to Turn-off the Electronics

Some people just clean without really think whether or not their electronics are plugged or unplugged. Cleaning your TV or any devices while its powered on or plugged may put you at risk of being electrocuted and at the same time might cause damage to your devices.

8. Read the Tags

I believe everyone is guilty of not reading the labels off the clothes and sheets. Did you know that the tags on the bottom of the fitted sheet is a guide to know what size the sheet is? If it’s on the left, it’s a king-size sheet and on the right, it’s a queen size sheet. Also, the tags show exactly the way on how and how-not-to clean it.

9. New House Smell

Who doesn’t love the smell of a clean, fresh, new house? It makes you want to move from one house to another. Adding a few drops of essential oils on your organic cleaning solution is a great way of starting your cleaning. It does not only make you feel relaxed but also eases your mind and heart.

10. Always remember the Showerhead

This is one of the items that isn’t usually cleaned. The showerhead builds-up residue and is quite hard to remove. You need a cleaner that you can leave overnight to dissolve the dirt. Don’t forget to rinse it in the morning!

Smart Cleaning Tricks

ice cubes to deodorize garbage disposal

Ice cubes to Deodorize a Garbage Disposal

Got a stinky garbage disposal? Get rid of its unruly smell by dropping lots of ice cubes made of vinegar down the disposal. The vinegar’s acidity help remove the smell and also clean your disposal. Don’t forget to flush it with cold water after to rinse all the residues.

Use Aluminum Foil to Scrub Off Pans

Do you love baking but never the cleaning part? The aluminum foil is an effective scrub to remove remnants of your baking on a pan. Don’t forget to add a few drops of dishwashing liquid!

Baking soda does Wonders

It’s no secret that baking soda has a way of making everything sparkling and clean. There are many baking soda recipes and the most popular one is the baking soda and vinegar mixture. This is most effective in cleaning the kitchen sink, drain and even pots and pans.

Pillowcase for the Ceiling Fan

Cleaning a ceiling fan is not only messy but is also quite dangerous. Its blades can cut your hand. Using a pillowcase is the best way to clean it. Just slide it over the blade and slowly pull it back removing the dirt from the fan while protecting your hands.

Rice for your Coffee Grinder

Rice is not only good for eating but also for making your coffee grinder squeaky clean. Just toss some rice grains on the coffee grinder, let it stay for a while to remove the odour then wipe it clean.

Rubber Glove is your Protection

Rubber gloves are often used as a protecting when cleaning. But did you know that it works wonders on your pet’s furs. The hair and furs that is scattered on your sofa will automatically cling to the rubber glove like a magnet. Saves you a lot of time!

Coffee filter to Dust

The dust on your flat screen TV can easily be removed by using a coffee filter. Unlike cloths, the coffee filter it leaves your screen lint-free.

Lemon Juice is the Best!

Lemon juice is a popular fruit that has a lot of health benefits. It has antioxidants that helps remove all the toxins in your body. Aside from that, lemon juice is also an effective cleaning agent. It helps remove stains and deodorizes surfaces. Giving you that lemon fresh scent.

Can A Home Be Too Clean?

No amount of cleaning can really get rid of all the dirt and germs that stays at your home. No matter how many times you clean, there will always be new germs that will be coming from outside your home or from your pets who loves to go outside. The idea of a clean and disinfected house is far from being true.

Is my house “Too clean”?

In all honesty, no amount of cleaning can really get rid of all the germs and dirt that is dormant at your home. They move as fast as you clean. New germs and dirt appear because air goes in and out of your home and people and pets brings it along with them when they go out. Contaminated foods and stacked items are good areas to pool germs. The idea of having a house that is “too clean” is wrong and even impossible.

Health Benefits of a clean home

a clean home is a happy home with a home background

Wanting a clean home is not a bad dream. It is not only good for you but also for your family as well. A study at Indiana University found out that people who has cleaner homes has increase physical activity making them physically fit.

Also, a clean home lowers the stress and fatigue that a person is feeling. A messy home may be a subconscious reminder of a work that needs to be finished while a clean home makes you feel even more organized.

Less dirt and germs reduce the risk of having allergic reactions and asthmatic attack. Dirt that has been stagnant for a long time and inhaled by a person can trigger allergic reactions. 

Importance of Good hygiene

Good hygiene is critical in stopping the spread of diseases-causing germs, bacteria and viruses such as the novel coronavirus, common colds and flu, and even tummy bugs like salmonella and E.coli.

Good personal hygiene not only keeps all parts of the body clean, but it is also plays a role in maintaining our health including our physical and mental health. Poverty and lack of access to clean water are only a few of other factors that can affect a person’s personal hygiene.

5 Simple steps of effective handwashing

step by step infographic of washing hands

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends regular washing of hands at certain times to avoid spread of infectious diseases:

  • Before, during and after preparing food
  • Before eating meals
  • Before and after looking after anyone who is vomiting or has diarrhea
  • Before and after treating a wound or cut
  • After going to the bathroom
  • After changing diapers or cleaning your child
  • After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
  • After touching any form of garbage or dirty surfaces/objects
  • After handling pets or pet-related items such as food and feeding bowl

The CDC outline 5 simple steps that everyone should follow to have an effective handwashing:

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water then turn the tap off and apply soap.
  2. Lather the hands by rubbing them together with the soap, remember to reach the backs of the hands, between the fingers and under the nails.
  3. Scrub the hands continuously for at least 20 seconds (sing your “happy birthday” song twice).
  4. Rinse the hands well under clean, running water.
  5. Dry hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

Does exposure to germs strengthen our immune system?

The immune system

Childhood exposure to germs was though to help strengthen the immune system and protect children from developing allergies and asthma. Until now, there were various researches that tried to identify the mechanism behind this. Some studies show that early life exposure to microbes can help fight infection in the body but might also trigger a range of disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease.

According to hygiene hypothesis, people who grew up in a clean environment with proper sanitation lack normal exposure to microbes, pollen and other germs in the environment. It was said that this have a negative effect in the development of their immune system, which makes them have a higher risk of acquiring diseases unlike those who have been exposed to dirt at an early age.

With the advent of numerous antibacterial and antimicrobial soap readily available in the market, many people developed a fear of germs which has been pushed too far and might be causing us more harm than cure.