Another note. Yes, another note about the diseases going around your kids’ school. Bronchitis. Strep. Flu. Respiratory syncytial virus. Just looking at the words is enough to send mamas and dadas into a panic. The CDC reported that RSV causes an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among little ones younger than five each year in the USA. So how do you 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 fatigue. 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 reported that air within homes and buildings can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air, and in drastic cases, 1000 times more polluted. There are two primary causes of poor indoor air quality:
- Pollutant substances (cleaning products, inadequately maintained or unclean heating and cooling or humidification systems, tobacco, etc)
So all this data – what is it for? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your kids aren’t breathing sullied, virus-inducing air?
Luckily, we have options.
Get Proactive On Air Filtration
Have you ever been enraged and had to bite your tongue to keep from saying something regrettable ? That’s a filter. Have you ever used water from the refrigerator dispenser and had your thirst immediately satisfied? That’s the filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid annoying outcomes. You filter your words for amity, you filter your water for health, why not filter your air?
Many hospitals use a high-efficiency air filtration system called HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air), which you can invest in for your home if you have someone living there with a low immune system or someone who’s very susceptible to sickness. Even if there aren’t any respiratory issues in your home, you’ll be extremely surprised by the almost instant change from a standard air filter to a High Efficiency unit.
If you don’t feel like a high-grade air filtration system is right for your home, there are multiple other options to help clean your home’s air. From basic air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, review the chart below to help decide which air filtration and purification system is right for you.
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 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 system will help cleanse 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 exactly the opposite of each other? Why would I install one rather than the other? For home comfort, humidity levels should be between 35% and 50%. Too much humidity can cause microbes, condensation and even wood damage. Too little humidity can cause cracked skin, sinus sickness, cracking 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 air, helping with disease, dry skin, and warped wood furniture and instruments. Dehumidifiers pull out moisture from your home, helping to stop bacteria growth, and improving indoor comfort immensely.
Don’t Dismiss Duct Cleaning
It’s nearly spring and that means spring cleaning! Don’t neglect your ducts during this time of renewal. Since the majority of our in-home air arrives through our duct system, it’s important to keep it from getting dirty with bacteria, microbes, and dust. When you have your ducts cleaned, ask the technician to check for duct leaks, too. Leaks in the duct system can cause extra contaminants to enter your air and circulate throughout your home. Guaranteeing they are clean and maintained will help keep your air clean and your family healthy.
With the move to become more energy-efficient, homes are often sealed tighter and insulated better to make sure air isn’t escaping while our heating and cooling systems work to keep our home enjoyable. Energy-efficiency is a good thing, but it also means a decreased amount of airflow, less circulation, and reduced movement. This can cause the air to become static and contaminants (indoor air pollution) are remaining inside your home’s air – the air you and your family breathe. An air ventilation system observes indoor and outdoor temperatures and humidity and constantly brings the required air replacement. This can add 5% to 10% more fresh air every 60 minutes, decreasing the concentration of airborne contaminants.
Get A Home Health Report
During your next air conditioning tune-up, request a complete indoor air quality report from your HVAC contractor. An expert heating and cooling company like Service Experts will provide a copy of your report with professional guidance to address these and other air concerns in your home.
So, yes, it’s frightening to know that your kids are being exposed to scary respiratory diseases but next time you get that message 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.