Fight Sickness & Stay Healthy with These Indoor Air Quality Tips
Another note. Yes, another note about the illnesses going around your kids’ school. Whooping Cough. Strep. Stomach bug. RSV - Respiratory syncytial virus. Just reading the words is enough to send moms and dads into a panic. The CDC announced that RSV results in an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among children under five each year in the USA. So how do you help make sure your family is safe?
Understand Indoor Air Pollution
The CDC warns that poor indoor air quality can advance lung diseases such as asthma and also cause headaches, nausea, and fatigue. Additionally, the American College of Allergists report that 50% of all diseases are either caused or intensified by polluted indoor air. The Texas DSHS said that air within homes and buildings can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air, and in drastic cases, 1000 times more polluted. There are two main causes of poor indoor air quality:
- Pollutants (cleaning products, improperly maintained or unclean heating and cooling or humidification systems, cigarette smoke, etc)
- Poor ventilation
So all this info – so what? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your kiddos aren’t breathing adulterated, disease-inducing air?
Luckily, there are options.
Get Proactive On Air Filtration
Have you ever been irate and had to bite your tongue to keep from saying something awful ? That’s a filter. Have you ever used water from the refrigerator dispenser and had your thirst immediately satisfied? That’s due to a filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid annoying consequences. You filter your words for peace, you filter your water for health, why wouldn’t you filter your air?
Many hospitals use a high-efficiency air filtration system called HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air), which you can invest in for your home if you have a loved one with a low immune system or someone who’s highly susceptible to disease. Even if nobody has respiratory issues in your home, you’ll be instantly surprised by the almost instant change from a standard air filter to a High Efficiency system.
If you’re not interested in such a high-grade air filtration system, there are several other options to help clean your home’s air. From basic air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, review the chart below to help decide which air filtration and purification system is right for you.
Help Control Germs With Germicidal Systems
Germi-what? Germicidal UV Light Systems help decrease airborne biological contaminants – germs – by safely producing high intensity UV light from within your home’s air flow system. These bacteria-destroying systems can kill germs and even help stop further germs from collecting in your home. According to one study, almost 20% of people with allergies suffer from exposure to fungi and bacteria in their air systems. A UV light unit will help sanitize and disinfect indoor air to help you reach the highest air quality possible.
Optimize Moisture with Humidifiers or Dehumidifiers
Um, don’t those two systems do precisely the opposite of each other? Why would I choose one rather than the other? For home comfort, it’s recommended to have the humidity levels between 35% and 50%. Too much humidity can cause microbes, condensation and even wood damage. Not enough humidity can cause dry skin, sinus illness, fractured wood and sore throats. Depending on what climate you live in, you most likely have too much or too little humidity.
Humidifiers add the ideal amount of moisture to your home, helping with illness, cracked skin, and warped wood furniture and instruments. Dehumidifiers pull out moisture from your home, helping to stop bacteria growth, and improving indoor comfort a great deal.
Don’t Dismiss Duct Cleaning
It’s almost spring and that means spring cleaning! Don’t exclude your ducts during this rejuvenating time. Since the majority of our in-home air arrives through our duct system, it’s crucial to keep it from getting dirty with bacteria, mildew, and dust. When you have your ducts cleaned, ask the service tech to check for duct leaks, as well. Leaks in the duct system can cause more contaminants to enter your air and circulate throughout your home. Confirming they are clean and maintained will help keep your air clean and your children healthy.
With the move to become more energy-efficient, homes are often sealed tighter and insulated carefully and completely to make sure air isn’t escaping while our hvac systems work to keep our home enjoyable. Energy-efficiency is a wonderful thing, but it also means a reduced amount of airflow, less circulation, and reduced movement. This can cause the air to become motionless and contaminants (indoor air pollution) are stuck inside your home’s air – the air your family breathes. An air ventilation system observes indoor and outdoor temperatures and humidity and constantly brings the required air replacement. This can add 5% to 10% more fresh air every hour, lowering the concentration of airborne contaminants.
Get A Home Health Report
During your next A/C system tune-up, request a complete indoor air quality report from your HVAC contractor. An expert heating and cooling company like Service Experts will provide a copy of your report with professional guidance to address these and other air worries in your home.
So, yes, it’s troubling to know that your kids are being exposed to scary respiratory diseases but next time you get that note from your little ones’ school, wash their hands, cover their cough, and invest in a system to help your indoor air quality be the best it can be.