Maintaining good indoor air quality is important for the health and well-being of you and your family. Indoor air can be almost five times more polluted than outdoor air due to factors such as:
- Indoor chemical and cleanser use
- Tobacco smoke
- Mold and mildew growth
- Cooking gases
- Environmental pollutants
- Dust, pet dander, and debris
With all of these pollutants swirling around you and your family on a daily basis, it’s no wonder that saturated indoor air can negatively impact your health. Exposure to poor indoor quality can cause a wide range of health problems. Taking steps to reduce or eliminate these pollutants can not only improve your HVAC efficiency but also protect the health and comfort of your beloved family members.
Health Impacts of Poor Indoor Air Quality
Exposure to poor indoor air quality can have both short-term and long-term consequences on your health. Those with respiratory or chronic health conditions may have a particularly difficult time dealing with additional challenges that come with compromised air quality. Some of the many health consequences that arise from poor indoor air quality exposure include the following.
Exposure to pollutants like mold, mildew, dust mites, and pet dander can easily trigger asthma and allergy symptoms, causing issues like wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath. Allergens may also trigger skin reactions and rashes that are visible proof of contamination in the home.
Headaches and Dizziness
Exposure to pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, and VOCs can cause headaches and dizziness. If you experience these symptoms, don’t disregard them; consult with your healthcare practitioner and determine the cause of your discomfort. Prioritize making a plan for improving your indoor air quality.
Saturated, heavy indoor air can cause nearly every system in the body to work harder to assimilate oxygen into blood and tissues. As a result, you may feel fatigued after being indoors for a time. Fatigue can range from mild to severe, and it can compromise your quality of life if nothing is done to improve your daily living environment.
Pollutants such as secondhand smoke, radon, and carbon monoxide can all increase the likelihood of developing cardiovascular issues. Over time, heart disease and having a stroke become a concern with the body working harder than it normally would to detoxify and break down harmful chemicals that can cause damage to the heart and other vital organs.
Big Indoor Offenders
While no indoor air pollutant is entirely safe to breathe in, there are a number of serious offenders that can be potentially life-threatening if inhaled in large quantities. Here are some of the most dangerous indoor pollutants to watch for in and around your home.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, and dangerous indoor air pollutant that is extremely difficult to detect. As it is inhaled, carbon monoxide interferes with the blood’s ability to carry oxygen, leading to a variety of severe symptoms including headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion, and even death in some cases. Long-term exposure to low levels of carbon monoxide can lead to health issues such as heart disease, brain damage, and harm to other internal organs. CO is produced by the fuel-burning process thrown off by gas appliances, furnaces, fireplaces, and attached garages. To protect against CO exposure, install carbon monoxide detectors in your home and have your home regularly tested for the presence of this potentially deadly gas.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that is present in soil. It can seep into buildings, saturating the air that you breathe and causing all kinds of health issues. In cases of prolonged or excessive exposure, radon is known to cause lung cancer. Because of its tasteless, odorless nature, radon testing is necessary to reduce your risk of developing certain conditions related to exposure.
Exposure to volatile organic compounds can pose a danger to your indoor air environment. VOCs are found in many common household products like paint, cleaning products, and air fresheners. When these products are used, they release chemicals into the air that can cause adverse health effects. Short-term exposure causes eye, nose, and throat irritation, while long-term exposure can result in liver, kidney, and nervous system damage. Choose low VOC products when available and ventilate your home when possible to allow fresh air to reduce high concentrations of pollutants
Mold and Mildew
Mold and mildew pose a serious danger to your health. Growing in moist, humid environments, they can release spores into the air that cause respiratory issues. Other issues with exposure include headaches, fatigue, and skin irritation. Reducing toxic levels of mold and mildew in your home is an integral part of improving indoor air quality and protecting the health of your loved ones.
Let’s Get Your Indoor Air Cleaned Up!
Smith & Willis Heating & Air Conditioning has been proudly serving valued clients in Commerce City and the surrounding areas for over two decades. Offering valuable services such as heating and cooling installation, repair, maintenance, and indoor quality assessment and inspection, we provide indoor comfort solutions that work for you, your home, and your budget. Contact us today to see how we can help you clean up your indoor air and improve your energy efficiency!