Is it true that forced air heat can trigger allergies?
The BabyCenter Editorial Team
"The heated air itself won't trigger allergies, but what's accumulated in the ductwork and then carried into the air – dust, mold, pollen, and animal dander – can," explains Neil Kao, a board-certified allergist and fellow of the American Academy of Allergy and Immunology. If you start sneezing when you first turn on your forced air heat in the fall or winter, that's probably what's going on.
Using a good HEPA air filter (available in most hardware stores) with your furnace can remove allergens from your heater's exhaust. Change filters as directed by the manufacturer, which may be as often as once a month in the winter.
Depending on how efficiently your filters are working, you may need to have your ductwork professionally cleaned every year or two as well, says Kao.
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