Air pollution isn’t restricted to the outdoors. Pet dander, dust and mold are common types of indoor air pollutants, all coming for sources you may not expect.
Some pollutants come from chemicals contained in new furniture, carpet or paint. Other pollutants can stick to you throughout the day and be tracked into your house. Even if you don’t have pets, pet owners can shed pet dander that you can pick up.
There are a few steps to help you combat indoor pollutants. Cleaner air promotes a healthy respiratory system, which leads to a better immune system, which leads to a happier you.
- Smoke outside. The first, and most obvious step, is to declare your home a no-smoking zone. If you or your family members are smokers, try to keep it outdoors. Second hand smoke contains thousands of chemicals, and can lead to ear and respiratory infections, asthma and a host of other ailments.
- Clean your floors frequently. A vacuum with a HEPA filter and a mop can be your most trusty weapons in the fight against indoor pollutants. Vacuum carpets frequently as dust and pet dander can be trapped in there for ages, especially in high-traffic areas. It’s recommended to vacuum two to three times a week. Also, mopping hard floors with plain water in between intense scrubbing sessions can help keep dust away.
- Control the humidity. Keeping the humidity in your house around 30-50% can reduce allergens. A dehumidifier is an easy way to do this, but paying attention to any and all water-related tasks in your home also helps. Don’t over-water plants, crack a window when cooking or bathing, and get your plumbing checked regularly even if there aren’t any noticeable leaks.
- Keep artificial air fresheners to a minimum. Many aerosol sprays, laundry detergents, fabric softeners and plug-in air fresheners actually have many chemicals that can be harmful to your respiratory system. If you still need that fresh scent in your home, try some natural sources. Open a window to let in some fresh air, place houseplants in every room and use sliced lemons or baking soda as natural odor killers.
- Keep your vents and air ducts clean. Peeking into the vents in your home may give you a preview of the amount of dust that sits in your air ducts. Schedule an appointment with Blind & Sons for a professional cleaning.
These simple steps can help prevent serious air pollution due to dust and allergen buildup in your home. Taking just a bit of time to combat those dust mites can help you breathe easier and lead a happy, more comfortable life.
Sources: WebMD, EPA