Allergy sufferers worldwide but especially in New Zealand complain bitterly as spring hits and the pollen counts rise. However, many overlook the fact that mould and dust mites are two of the most common sources of airborne allergens.
A fact that is significantly exacerbated by our damp, poorly ventilated houses which contain some of the highest levels of dust mites in the world and the perfect environment for mould to grow.
"New Zealand is the capital of the world when it comes to dust mites," said Mark Dixon, Chief Executive of charitable organisation Allergy New Zealand, who was recently quoted in an article published by Stuff.
Dust mites can trigger allergic rhinitis (sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes and throat) and aggravate asthma, thanks to the allergens present in their faecal particles. Tiny and light, the particles float into the air and if inhaled can cause a reaction.
If you've got the symptoms of an airborne allergy, it's quite likely to be dust mites.
If you or anyone in your family has allergies then building a steel frame home with hard surfaces such as floorboards or tiles over carpets will significantly help to reduce the ability for dust mites to live in your home and for mould to grow.
Unlike traditional framed homes which are reported as containing high levels of contaminants such as arsenic, New Zealand made steel is the healthier choice for framing. Our steel is free of the harsh chemicals that are used to stop timber from rotting, and mould, mildew spores and dust mites aren’t able to adhere to or breed on the surface of steel.
For your family, that means less exposure to chemicals and fewer problems with allergies and asthma.
Mould spores can trigger allergies and asthma.
Preventing and treating dampness and mould follows many of the same principles as for dust mites. Focus on ventilation by using extractor fans and opening windows and regularly air and clean bedding and soft furnishings.
Larrie Newman, Service Delivery Manager for mould cleaning company Clear Mould said (as quoted in an article recently published by Stuff) mould is very difficult to remove once it's established. "Lots of people think bleach works but it just takes the colour out. You need to kill it and prevent it from coming back."
For that reason, starting with a steel frame home is your best investment into significantly reducing the cause of allergies in your home.
We use ZOG® steel frames in all our kitset homes as it is a comprehensively engineered steel framing system that has been specifically designed for New Zealand's unique conditions and the demands of New Zealand families for a stronger, more durable, healthier living environment. ZOG® uses only quality Axxis New Zealand steel backed by the Axxis 50 year durability statement for high strength steel.