The Health Risks of a Dirty Carpet

Take a look around your home now. If you thought of cleaning the place up, where would you start? Sure, it would be good to dust the couch and curtains, wash the kitchenware or take out the trash. For the floor, you might even get a broom or turn on the vacuum – but would that be enough?

Carpets need more cleaning than most people may think. While you can take measures like letting guests leave their shoes by the door, you can only minimise the accumulated dirt. Carpets become ideal habitats for microbes, pathogens and other irritants over time. If you think they just settle there, that isn’t the case. They can get pushed into the air thanks to people’s feet, and this is where things get messy.

At Cleaner Sussex, we encourage you to let us professionally clean your floor and all other areas of the house. We recommend an interval of 12-18 months between each scheduled service. When it comes to cleaning your rugs and carpets, the job shouldn’t be half-done. We will ensure no hidden morsels or particles remain. You will find below a list of potential health hazards to your home, all of which stress the gravity of regular carpet maintenance:

1. Respiratory Problems

Mildew or mould found in a dirty carpet may produce mycotoxins – substances that pollute the floor and eventually, the air all around. Below are some common breathing issues to worry about:

a. Coughing
b. Nasal congestion
c. Excessive sneezing
d. Other cold-like symptoms
e. Tightness in the chest
f. Wheezing
g. Adverse allergic reactions
h. Asthma attacks

As mentioned on, a study conducted by the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health has found that cleaned carpets (as well as furniture and upholstery) lead to improvements on asthmatic people’s conditions. It has also concluded that the “volatile compounds” harboured by dirty carpets are a major cause of asthma to those not previously infected.

2. Skin Problems

Microbes love changing course from carpet rubbish to the dead skin cells on your body. Some symptoms you might experience include:

a. Skin irritation, swelling or infection
b. Eye infection
c. Redness of eyes
d. Watery eyes
e. Itchiness
f. Rashes or redness of skin
g. Skin asthma attacks (eczema)
h. Athlete’s foot

Specifically, athlete’s foot is a condition that, if untreated, can spread easily and lead to a serious bacterial infection. Avoid it by not treading barefoot on your carpet, using slippers instead.

3. Allergies

Of course, some pre-existing allergies may relate to the particles stored in the carpet fibres: spores, hairs, dust specks or small insects. You can expect common allergic reactions to involve sneezing, itchiness or malaise.

Additionally, as reported last April by Bianca Castro of Mirror Online, the faecal matter of dust mites can trigger a higher risk of perennial allergic rhinitis, which is essentially a swollen nose. So if you are concerned about your curtains or bed sheets, don’t forget the mites plaguing your carpet!

4. Extreme Illnesses

Hopefully, you will never come close to being diagnosed with any of the following: hypersensitivity, neurotoxicity or some types of cancer. It is suffice to say the longer one’s exposure is to a carpet’s dirt and germs, the greater the risks of such diseases become. Remember to make carpet cleaning a priority!