Don't Let Your House Make You Sick

Is your house making you sick?

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), our indoor environment is two to five times more toxic than our outdoor environment and, in some cases, the air measurements indoors have been found to be 100 times more polluted. For most homeowners the cause of this in-home pollution could include: radon, household chemical products, smoke, allergens and bugs like dust mites. Knowing that household items and air pollution could be putting your family at risk, what can you do about it?

No one wants to get sick especially if there is something they can do about it. If you are looking for some tips to keeping your family healthy here are some simple ideas that can get you started.

  • Heating/Cooling System Maintenance – Have your heating and cooling ducts professionally cleaned and maintained regularly.
  • Furniture and Accessories – If you have a favorite chair where you like to put your feet up or pillows to cuddle next to, consider having them cleaned to rid yourself of dust mites that live in every home. Dust mites are microscopic bugs that thrive on the humidity and warmth provided by our bodies. For someone who has asthma or allergies, dust mites can set off a reaction that is uncomfortable and debilitating.
  • Vacuums – The best vacuums use a HEPA filter that filters more than 99 percent of the particulates in air. Otherwise a vacuum is just spewing dust and allergens all around your house, which can contribute to illness and allergies.
  • Ventilation – Allow for ventilation of your home every day which should include cross ventilation where you open windows on opposite sides of the house. If the weather does not allow for this, try using the exhaust fans above your stove or in your bathroom.
  • House Plants- NASA studies have found that plants significantly improve air indoor quality. Some of the most effective detoxifying houseplants include: Ivy, African Violets, Christmas Cactus and Peace Lily.
  • Smoke – If you smoke try to do it outdoors. If you don’t smoke don’t allow others to do so in your home. Long-term exposure to other people’s tobacco smoke increases your risk for lung cancer, respiratory infections, and other lung problems.
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