Fight Sickness & Stay Healthy with These Indoor Air Quality Tips

March 10, 2016

Another message. Yes, another message about the illnesses going around your kids’ school. Croup. Strep. Stomach bug. Respiratory syncytial virus. Just seeing the words is enough to send moms and dads into a panic. The CDC said that RSV causes an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among little ones younger than five each year in the USA. So what do you do to help make sure your family is safe?

Understand Indoor Air Pollution

The CDC warns that poor indoor air quality can result in lung diseases such as asthma and also cause headaches, nausea, and lethargy. In fact, the American College of Allergists report that 50% of all diseases are either caused or worsened 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 dire cases, 1000 times more polluted. There are two main causes of poor indoor air quality:

 

  • Pollutant substances (cleaning products, inadequately maintained or unsanitary heating and cooling or humidification units, smoke, etc)
  • Poor ventilation

 

So all this information – so what? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your loved ones aren’t breathing sullied, virus-inducing air?

Luckily, there are options.

Get Proactive On Air Filtration

Have you ever been livid and had to bite your tongue to keep from saying something awful ? That’s a filter. Have you ever used water from the refrigerator door and had your thirst immediately relieved? That’s due to a filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid miserable outcomes. You filter your words for harmony, you filter your water for health, why not filter your air?

Several hospitals use a high-efficiency air filtration system called HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air), which you can buy for your home if you have a family member with a low immune system or someone who’s highly susceptible to illness. Even if nobody has respiratory issues in your family, you’ll be very 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 family’s air. From standard air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, read below to help decide which air filtration and purification system is right for you.

air filter chart 

Help Control Germs With Germicidal Systems

Germi-who? Germicidal UV Light Systems help reduce airborne biological contaminants – germs – by safely producing high intensity UV light from within your home’s air flow system. These bacteria-destroying devices can kill germs and even help stop further germs from building up in your home. According to one study, roughly one out of five people with allergies suffer from exposure to fungi and bacteria in their air systems. A UV light system will help clean and sterilize indoor air to help you reach the highest air quality possible.

Optimize Moisture with Humidifiers or Dehumidifiers

Um, don’t those two things do precisely the opposite of each other? Why would I install one instead of the other? For home comfort, humidity levels should be between 35% and 50%. Too much humidity can cause microbes, condensation and even wood damage. Insufficient humidity can cause dry skin, sinus sickness, fractured wood and sore throats. Depending on where you live, you most likely have too much or too little humidity.

Humidifiers add the right amount of moisture to your home’s air, helping with disease, cracked skin, and distorted 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 neglect your ducts during this revitalizing time. Since most of our in-home air arrives through our duct system, it’s vital to keep it from getting dirty with bacteria, mildew, and dust. When you have your ducts cleaned, ask the technician to check for duct leaks, too. Leaks in the duct system can cause more contaminants to enter your air and circulate throughout your home. Making sure they are clean and maintained will help keep your air clean and your loved ones healthy.

Increase Ventilation

With the challenge to become more energy-efficient, homes are often sealed tighter and insulated more thoroughly to make sure air isn’t escaping while our heating and cooling systems work to keep our home pleasant. Energy-efficiency is a great thing, but it also means a reduced amount of airflow, less circulation, and reduced movement. This can cause the air to become stationary and contaminants (indoor air pollution) are stuck inside your home’s air – the air you and your family breathe. An air ventilation system observes indoor and outdoor temperatures and humidity and continuously brings the required air replacement. This can add 5% to 10% more fresh air every 60 minutes, reducing the concentration of airborne contaminants.

Get A Home Health Report

During your next A/C system tune-up, inquire about a complete indoor air quality report from your A/C contractor. An expert air conditioning company like Service Experts will provide a copy of your report with professional recommendations to address these and other air worries in your home.

So, yes, it’s terrifying to know that your kids are being exposed to scary respiratory diseases but next time you get that message from your childs’ school, wash their hands, cover their cough, and invest in a system to keep your indoor air quality as strong as possible.

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