It is a common misconception amongst many homeowners that pollution only exists outside of their homes and for that reason they think that there is no need to improve indoor air quality. However indoor pollution does exist and can be just as harmful, if not more serious. Indoor pollution consists of lead created by excessive dust, formaldehyde, fire-retardants, radon and even several volatile chemicals caused by fragrances present in cleaning liquids. Some pollutants are tracked into the home. Some arrive via a new mattress or furniture, carpet cleaners, or a coat of paint on the walls. Children, people with asthma, and the elderly may be especially sensitive to indoor pollutants, but other effects on health may appear years later, after repeated exposure. Steps to improve indoor air quality are both an important and simple process to incorporate in your daily life.
WebMD states that there are five ways to improve indoor air quality within your household.
The first step to improve indoor air quality is to keep your floors fresh; mop the floors and use floor mats at any entryway where guests can track dirt into the house.
The second step is to keep a healthy level of humidity. Dust mites and mold love moisture. Keeping humidity around 30%-50% helps keep them and other allergens under control. A dehumidifier helps to reduce moisture in indoor air and effectively controls allergens. An air conditioner also reduces indoor pollen count which is a plus for those who suffer from allergies.
The third step is making your home a smoke-free zone. “Probably the single most important aspect of indoor air pollution is secondhand cigarette smoke,” says Philip Landrigan, MD, a pediatrician and director of the Children’s Environmental Health Center at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. Cigarette smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals. Secondhand smoke can lead to a number of unfortunate ailments, such as, children developing ear and respiratory infections, asthma, and cancer. In addition to being susceptible to severe cancer, smokers also experience difficulty in breathing, heart attacks, and stroke.
The fourth step is to test for radon. Whether you have a new or old home, you could have a radon problem. This colorless, odorless gas significantly raises the risk of lung cancer. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. today. Testing for radon is inexpensive and really easy to do so investing in an examination is beneficial.
The fifth and final step to improve indoor air quality is using products that smell good naturally. Artificial and synthetic fragrances emit dozens of different chemicals into the air. Opting for generic brands and/or scentless cleaning products might be the best approach in avoiding toxic chemicals.
To conclude, these five easy steps come highly recommended from medical professionals who realize the importance of indoor pollution. Following these guidelines will help you to efficiently improve indoor air quality. In addition to following these guidelines, you can also invest in an Environmental Professional in a box™ Air Quality testing kit from Environmental Innovative Technologies to make sure that the air in your home is not polluted.
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