Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) refers to the air quality within and around buildings and structures, especially as it relates to the health and comfort of building occupants. Understanding and controlling common pollutants indoors can help reduce your risk of indoor health concerns. Here are a few ways to maintain quality air in your home:
- Open the windows
It might sound obvious, but keeping your airflow fresh is the cheapest and easiest way to improve the air quality in your home. It is vital for letting oxygen in and removing pollutants, as well as reducing the humidity that dust mites need to survive. Be particularly careful to keep rooms well-ventilated when using chemical-heavy cleaning or decorating products.
- Invest in an air purifier
Dust and pollen particles can be microscopic, and it’s impossible to clean something you can’t see. The best air purifying machines trap and remove almost 100% of pollutants by drawing in dirty air, filtering it, and releasing it back out into the room much cleaner and fresher. Some release negative ions into the air to help neutralize airborne viruses and bacteria.
- Don’t forget to dust
Good-quality vacuum cleaners are expensive, but they are a powerful force against dust, pollen, and pet hair, all of which can quickly build up and irritate your respiratory system. Vacuum as regularly as you can, including underneath sofas and beds. Change your bedding weekly and wash it at 60 degrees to kill dust mites and germs. Keep surfaces clutter-free for frequent dusting and use a damp cloth to trap those pesky particles.
- Give your cleaning cupboard a green makeover
Cleaning your home is objectively a good thing, or at least it would be if the bleach and other products in your cleaning cupboard were not toxic to breathe in. What’s more, when you wash them down the sink, they pollute the waterways and harm wildlife. Luckily, you don’t need to use toxic ingredients to cut through grease and grime, as plenty of eco-friendly cleaning products work just as well and smell a lot better. Look for products that contain food-grade ingredients like coconut oil and are fragrance-free or scented with aromatherapy oils.
- Dry out damp
Dust mites, mold, and viruses love heat and moisture, making kitchens and bathrooms their haven. Take care to keep the door shut when taking a hot shower, cover cooking pans, and hang wet clothes up to dry outside. Open the windows as much as possible to prevent condensation buildup, especially while sleeping. If controlling your humidity level proves a struggle, consider investing in a dehumidifier for poorly insulated rooms with outer walls or single-glazed windows.
While it’s easy to see when you need to dust or sweep, it’s harder to know when the air in your home needs cleaning. In fact, the indoor air you breathe can be hazardous to your health without any telltale signs. Indoor air can be even more polluted than the air outdoors. Don’t let the air in your home threaten your family’s health, especially if someone in your family has asthma or another lung disease.
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