If you suffer with allergies, asthma, or anxiety, you don’t have to live in conditions that make it worse. And you don’t have to move to enjoy a safe and healthy home environment. Keep reading for a few simple home modification ideas that will enhance your home and health.
Create a reading room
Studies and home libraries used to be the norm, even when the average house was half the size of what we know today. If you find yourself unable to wind down after a busy day, consider turning an unused bedroom or office into a reading room. Your reading room doesn’t have to be large or elaborate, but you should look for a space with lots of natural light to minimize strain on your eyes. Elle Décor’s list of 35 home libraries is a great place to start for inspiration.
Unwind in the garden
It is well accepted—and backed up by science—that spending time outdoors is good for both your physical and mental health. An outdoor garden is the perfect way to enjoy these benefits while also improving your home’s landscape. A garden also offers the opportunity to make environmentally friendly changes to your home. For example, you might design a water-wise garden to take advantage of rain. Planting a vegetable garden helps you go green by reducing the number of trips you make to the grocery store, while a flower garden will attract bees and provide food and shelter for local wildlife.
Eliminate allergens in the air
Year-round allergies are hard to handle. But, you can reduce your exposure to dust and dust mites by swapping feather-based bedding and pillows with synthetic materials. Remove carpet throughout the home and replace with hardwood or laminate tiles. You can do much of this work yourself. You’ll need a quality utility knife and a hammer to remove carpet tacks, tackstrips, and nails. The Mayo Clinic also suggests installing a HEPA air filter, which will pull small particles from the air. Look for an air filter that is Energy Star certified, which won’t add significantly to your energy consumption.
Evaluate your storage space
Clutter can completely obliterate your ability to focus and concentrate, but it can be emotionally difficult to get rid of things you love. If you have trouble letting go, consider adding built-in storage throughout your home so you will always have a place to store your beloved possessions. If you aren’t handy with tools, even for small projects, find a local handyman to help out. In the Atlanta area, this will run you between $183 and $630, but it’s a small investment when you consider the rewards of wellness-based home improvements.
The National Center for Healthy Housing maintains that green housing equals improved health. There are a number of eco-friendly home improvements and services that have a direct impact on your mind and body. For example, using green building materials when constructing a deck will reduce your exposure to chemicals. Likewise, taking steps to increase the natural light in your home will improve your productivity while having a positive effect on your overall mental health.
By making a few changes to your home, you give yourself more control over your health and wellness. It doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg, but may require a little elbow grease—or at least a good handyman. Before you begin any project, make sure you have the right tools and safety gear. After all, you’re goal is to enhance your health, not wind up in the ER with an injury that could have been prevented.
MEET THE AUTHOR
Jackie Waters is a mother of four boys and she lives on a farm in Oregon. Jackie was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in her 20s, which motivated her to make lifestyle changes to minimize the need of medications. She started throwing out harmful cleaning products and re-organizing her home so it was easier for her to manage the “bad” days. She is passionate about providing a healthy and happy home for her family, and aims to provide advice for others on how to do the same with her site Hyper-Tidy.com.