Sometimes the air inside your home can be as polluted as city air. If you live with dirty air in your home for a long time, you could be hurting your health.
To find out if you have an air pollution problem inside your house, take this quiz.
There are lots of sources of home air pollution. Dirty home air can come from cigarette smoke, cleaning supplies, certain building materials, and some fuels that are used to heat and cool your home. There are other sources, too. This is just the short list. If the air in your home does not circulate well or if it is unusually hot or humid, it could add to the amount of dirty air you live with.
Air pollution can have long term or short term effects on your health. Long term effects can be very serious such as lung disease or cancer. You might not feel the long term effects until you get very sick. That’s why it is important to go ahead and make those home repairs that reduce or eliminate indoor air pollution.
Short term effects of indoor air pollution include itchy eyes, nose and throat, headaches, or getting dizzy. Your doctor can treat short term effects of home air pollution.
1. Control it at the source. After you have identified where the dirty air is coming from – like your gas stove, or moldy walls or floors, reduce how much of it escapes into your living area. This is an inexpensive way to take charge of your home’s air quality. It is also the best way for most problems.
2. Bring more air in from the outside. If you bring more air in from the outside you will reduce the thickness of dirty air in your home. If you are working on a project like painting your house or sanding furniture, you should do everything you can to increase the circulation and let in fresh air from the outside. Here are a few ways to do that:
3. Use Air Cleaners. A good air cleaner will collect the dirty air from inside your home and draw in fresh air from the outside. There are also special filters, for example, an electrostatic filter, for furnaces that help reduce allergic reactions to indoor air pollution.