Carpeting has long been thought to be one of the best forms of flooring, as its softness provides a level of comfort to homeowners. While there are definitely some positive aspects to carpet, it may not be quite as beneficial as you might think. Studies fuel the debate on health effects that stem from the use of carpet.
Carpet and Allergens
The American Latex Allergy Association has completed studies showing that increased allergens with carpets is a myth. A Swedish study even states that allergy reactions are higher when no carpet is present. While there may not be an increase in allergens found in carpet over other flooring types, there has been proof from further studies that show carpets hold particles and allergens within them. With the allergens trapped in the carpet, there aren’t as many in the air to breathe, but they are still kept within the home. Households with pets and children who are lower to the ground on a regular basis may be impacted by this build up of allergens kept inside carpeted areas.
The Flipside of the Debate
Even in the face of studies above, Advanced Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Center’s Dr. Patricia Gomez Dinger says hard surfaced flooring is still a much better option. Carpets attract and give an enticing home to particles like cockroach debris and pollen, which is why she still recommends hard floors for anyone with allergies.
If you want to ditch the carpet, you have quite a few choices available from tile to stone to the lesser-thought-of concrete. Yes, concrete. You may think concrete is only for driveways and sidewalks but there are many reasons why concrete flooring is on the rise.
Add Durability With Concrete
Concrete might be a better option… It’s extremely durable and you can achieve a wide variety of modern looks with it. Unlike carpet that has to be cleaned carefully, and will need replacing if it is too badly damaged or dirtied, concrete requires little care and will last a lot longer. It’s also waterproof and stain-proof. While carpet allows mold and mildew to grow and odors to develop, concrete inhibits mildew and mold growth. Concrete will not hold water like carpet does, and is not susceptible to stains. This makes it ideal for households with pets and children who are most likely to cause spills and messes.
Concrete is Greener
Floors made of concrete are a more eco-friendly option, too. This is because using concrete does not deplete any natural resources as many other flooring materials do. It is also made locally and takes less energy to produce. Concrete Craft also explains how there is less of a need for heating and cooling with concrete in place, as it absorbs warm and cool air. Concrete can also be recycled when it is no longer needed, and less waste is produced due to no scraps of flooring as is found under carpets and other flooring types.
Concrete is a popular option because of its durability and beneficial features, but there are some pitfalls to be aware of. Due to its tough structure, items become more breakable if they fall on it. If you drop a glass on carpet, the glass most likely will not break. When dropped on concrete, glass would break easily. Overtime, small cracks may also appear, so resealing will need to be done regularly.
While carpeting may not be as bad as many would think, it’s probably still a better option to use concrete flooring instead. Concrete floors provide an eco-friendly option, are extremely durable and will last a lot longer than other flooring types. There may be some pitfalls to concrete, but the benefits far outweigh the few minor issues that may or may not cause an issue overtime.