5 Reasons to Care About Indoor Air Quality
As we continue to grow and thrive on our planet, individuals who are environmentally conscious are concerned about the earth’s natural resources becoming depleted. A big part of this concern is centered around the condition of the air supply in the world since it can’t be cleaned that easily once it has become polluted.
Almost 44 percent (roughly 138 million) people of our nation live in areas that have high pollution levels which makes it harmful to breathe, according to The American Lung Association’s State of the Air: 2015 report. Below are 5 reasons why you should care about indoor air quality.
Your Health is at Risk in Poor Indoor Air Quality
The quality of indoor air has a big effect on your health. In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, poor indoor air quality doesn’t just affect your health, it affects the whole environment. In some instances, breathing in poor air can cause health issues such headaches, birth defects, asthma, cancer, heart and respiratory diseases and even death.
Poor Indoor Air Quality Can Be Harmful
The majority of American citizens spend a large amount of time inside their homes, workplace, or other buildings. These places can have chemicals, gas, and other pollutants that can lead to eye irritation, headaches, fatigue, and allergies. Other more serious pollutants can even cause long-term health complications like certain types of cancer.
You are Indoors a Lot of Time
Since Americans spend a lot of time indoors, indoor air quality should be a big concern to them. The term ‘pollution’ probably brings up images of car exhaust and smoke stacks in your mind. These types of pollution happen outdoors so you probably think the indoor air you breathe is cleaner. This is not necessarily true. Indoor air can carry thousands of pollutants due to everyday activities, improperly used appliances and off-gassing of building materials.
Energy Efficiency Gone Wrong
As you strive to make your home more energy efficient, little do you know that you are creating spaces sealed so tight that fumes such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can build up. These can be found in biological irritants (dust mites and mold) and in many household products.
You are the Cause of Poor Indoor Air Quality
It might sound harsh, but it’s true. There are various daily activities you do (like cleaning) that can lead to poor indoor air quality. Things like bleach, cigarette smoke, pesticides and even your wood cabinetry (some contain formaldehyde) can cause poor indoor air quality. If you must use bleach or pesticides, open up the windows to ventilate. Smoke outdoors and try to avoid pressed wood when installing cabinets.
To improve your indoor air quality, you might want to consider installing a whole house fan. It keeps the air moving and well ventilated. Air pollutants can get trapped inside a poorly ventilated home. A whole house fan is one of the smartest investments you can make. If you feel as though your household is making you sick, you might be on to something. Take action now to cleaning up the air q