Another note. Yes, another note about the diseases going around your kids’ school. Bronchitis. Strep. Influenza. RSV. Just looking at the words is enough to send mamas and dadas into a panic. The CDC announced that RSV causes an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among kids five and under each year in the USA. So how do you help ensure 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, dry eyes, and fatigue. Additionally, the American College of Allergists report that 50% of all sicknesses are either caused or worsened by polluted indoor air. The Texas DSHS reported 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 key causes of poor indoor air quality:
- Pollutant substances (cleaning products, poorly maintained or dirty heating and cooling or humidification systems, cigarette smoke, etc)
So all this information – what is it for? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your family aren’t breathing adulterated, virus-inducing air?
Luckily, you have options.
Get Proactive On Air Filtration
Have you ever been irate and had to bite your tongue to keep from saying something regrettable ? That’s a filter. Have you ever used water from the refrigerator door and had your thirst immediately quenched? That’s due to a filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid unpleasant outcomes. You filter your words for amity, 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 get for your home if you have a loved one with a low immune system or someone who’s extremely susceptible to disease. Even if nobody has respiratory issues in your home, you’ll be very surprised by the almost instant change from a standard air filter to a High Efficiency unit.
If you’re not interested in such a high-grade air filtration system, there are multiple other options to help clean your home’s air. From basic air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, see below to help decide which air filtration and purification system is right for your home.
Help Control Germs With Germicidal Systems
Germi-huh? 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 contraptions can kill germs and even assist in stopping further germs from building up 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 device will help purify and disinfect indoor air to help you reach the highest air quality possible.
Optimize Moisture with Humidifiers or Dehumidifiers
Um, don’t those two machines do literally the opposite of each other? Why would I want one rather than the other? For home comfort, suggested humidity levels are between 35% and 50%. Too much humidity can cause microbes, condensation and even wood damage. Not enough humidity can result in cracked skin, sinus illness, cracking wood and sore throats. Depending on the climate where you live, chances are you have too much or too little humidity.
Humidifiers add the perfect amount of moisture to your home, helping with disease, itchy skin, and distorted wood furniture and instruments. Dehumidifiers pull out moisture from your home, helping to eliminate bacteria growth, and improving indoor comfort immensely.
Don’t Dismiss Duct Cleaning
It’s almost spring and that means spring cleaning! Don’t neglect your ducts during this rejuvenating time. Since the majority of our in-home air comes through our duct system, it’s important to keep it from getting dirty with bacteria, mold, and dust. When you have your ducts cleaned, ask the service tech to check for duct leaks, too. Leaks in the duct system can cause extra 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 challenge to become more energy-efficient, homes are often sealed tighter and insulated more thoroughly 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 decreased 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 detects 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, lowering the concentration of airborne contaminants.
Get A Home Health Report
During your next A/C system tune-up, ask for a complete indoor air quality report from your air conditioning contractor. An expert AC company like Service Experts will provide a copy of your report with professional recommendations to address these and other air issues in your home.
So, yes, it’s terrifying to know that your sweet babies 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 as strong as possible.