Signs Your Home is Making You Sick
and What You Can Do About It
When is “home sweet home” not so sweet at all? When the things in your home leak toxic fumes and chemicals into your air, it can have serious health consequences for you and your family. That’s why it is so important to recognize these serious signs your home is making you sick and what you can do about it.
Your Sheets Are Making Your Skin Itchy
Did you know the average person sheds about half an ounce of dead skin cells each week? That’s a shot glass of dead skin in your bed every fortnight! If you don’t wash your sheets regularly, those cells become an all-you-can-eat buffet for dust mites. These nasty little bugs are tiny little arachnids (read: spiders) that love living in the warm, dark and humid environment that is your bedding where they feed and, yes, expel waste right there where you sleep. Left unchecked, they can cause eczema flare-ups, allergic reactions and skin rashes among other dermatological problems. To keep your skin clear and your bed bug-free, be sure to wash your sheets in hot water about once a week. Furthermore, clean and disinfect your mattress at least twice a year.
Your Home Air System is Making You Wheeze
It’s not always obvious if the air in your home is polluted. You may confuse the early signs with seasonal allergies. However, these symptoms can lead to larger health problems if the indoor air quality is not improved in due time.
The following are some causes of poor indoor air quality:
● Gas appliances
To improve indoor air quality, it is important to make sure your home is as clean as possible at all times, especially if you have pets. Getting rid of dust and dander can have a huge impact on your family’s health. Many of these pollutants thrive in humid environments. Control the humidity in your home by making sure all vents lead outdoors and turn on all fans after using the bathroom, kitchen, or any other area of the house where moisture can build up. Adding indoor plants that filter air for your family is another earth-friendly way to improve air quality.
As far as VOCs (volatile organic compounds) go, you can’t always avoid them. Some paints and building materials are going to give off these fumes. While you can look for products that don’t emit toxins, you’re not out-of-luck if you find yourself in the vicinity of VOCs.
Anytime you use something that may be harmful, always make sure there is proper ventilation that allows the toxic air to flow out and clean air come in. You can also keep an air purifier in the room to enhance the efforts. These devices can remove pollutants and even secondhand smoke. Proper ventilation is one of the keys to improving and maintaining optimal air quality. If you are unsure about the state of your system, have a professional evaluate your air conditioning and ductwork while making sure there is proper venting around anything combustible. Switch out cleaning supplies and other VOC-containing products for natural cleaning products that help improve the air quality of your home.
Your Appliances can Poison You
If your home has gas stoves or hot-water heaters, your family is at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. Exposure to carbon monoxide can lead to abdominal pain, headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, fainting, changes in vision, fatigue, chest pain and shortness of breath. Over time, it can cause confusion, depression, hallucinations, seizures, memory problems, mobility issues, impaired judgment and death.
To keep your family safe, install a carbon monoxide detector by each gas appliance in the home. Carbon monoxide is both colorless and odorless, so a detector is the only way you’ll know if there is a leak. If your family shows the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, go to a hospital emergency department immediately.
Your home is a haven, but it’s not invulnerable. If sleep
is leaving your skin all itchy, a colony of dust mites may be making their home
in your bed. Chemicals and allergens can build up and pollute your air. Even
your hot water heater can leak poisonous gas in your home. The key to keeping
your family safe and healthy is proper maintenance.
Guest article by Charlotte Meier posted by Scott Martin
In : Consumer Tips