Another email. Yes, another email about the diseases going around your kids’ school. Whooping Cough. Strep. Stomach bug. RSV. Just seeing the words is enough to send mommies and daddies into a panic. The CDC announced that RSV results in an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among children under five each year in the US. So how do you help make sure your family is safe?
Understand Indoor Air Pollution
The CDC warns that poor indoor air quality can lead to lung diseases such as asthma and also cause headaches, nausea, and lethargy. In fact, 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 severe cases, 1000 times more polluted. There are two main causes of poor indoor air quality:
- Pollutant substances (cleaning solutions, improperly maintained or dirty heating and cooling or humidification systems, cigarette smoke, etc)
So all this info – so what? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your kids aren’t breathing contaminated, disease-inducing air?
Luckily, there are 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 relieved? That’s the filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid troublesome ramifications. You filter your words for harmony, you filter your water for health, why not filter your air?
Numerous hospitals use a high-efficiency air filtration system called HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air), which you can buy for your home if you have someone living there with a low immune system or someone who’s extremely susceptible to illness. Even if there aren’t any 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 many other options to help keep your home’s air clean. From standard air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, see below to help decide which air filtration and purification system is right for you.
Help Control Germs With Germicidal Systems
Germi-what? Germicidal UV Light Systems help remove 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 aid in stopping further germs from accruing in your home. According to one study, almost 20% of people with allergies suffer from exposure to fungi and bacteria in their ventilation systems. A UV light system will help clean and sterilize indoor air to help you reach the highest air quality possible.
Optimize Moisture with Humidifiers or Dehumidifiers
Um, don’t those two systems do exactly the opposite of each other? Why would I install 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. Insufficient humidity can cause dry skin, sinus ailments, 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’s air, helping with illness, dry skin, and distorted wood furniture and instruments. Dehumidifiers remove moisture from your home, helping to eliminate bacteria growth, and improving indoor comfort immensely.
Don’t Dismiss Duct Cleaning
It’s practically spring and that means spring cleaning! Don’t neglect your ducts during this revitalizing time. Since most of our in-home air enters through our duct system, it’s crucial 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, also. Leaks in the duct system can cause additional contaminants to enter your air and move around throughout your home. Making sure they are clean and maintained will help keep your air clean and your children safe.
With the shift to become more energy-efficient, homes are often sealed tighter and insulated better to make sure air isn’t escaping while our heating and air systems work to keep our home comfortable. Energy-efficiency is a good thing, but it also means a reduced amount of airflow, less circulation, and reduced movement. This can cause the air to become stagnant and contaminants (indoor air pollution) are lingering inside your home’s air – the air you 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 hour, lowering 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 A/C contractor. An expert air conditioning company like Service Experts will provide a copy of your report with professional suggestions to address these and other air worries in your home.
So, yes, it’s frightening to know that your children are being exposed to scary respiratory diseases but next time you get that note from your childs’ school, wash their hands, cover their cough, and invest in a system to help your indoor air quality be as strong as possible.