Another note. Yes, another note about the sicknesses going around your kids’ school. Croup. Strep. Influenza. RSV. Just reading the words is enough to send mamas and daddies into a panic. The CDC reported that RSV leads to an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among little ones younger than five each year in the US. So how do you help keep your family 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 tiredness. Additionally, the American College of Allergists report that 50% of all diseases are either caused or aggravated by polluted indoor air. The Texas DSHS noted 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 key causes of poor indoor air quality:
- Pollutant sources (cleaning products, inadequately maintained or unclean heating and cooling or humidification systems, tobacco, etc)
So all this information – what is it for? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your kids aren’t breathing adulterated, illness-inducing air?
Luckily, we have options.
Get Proactive On Air Filtration
Have you ever been mad and had to bite your tongue to keep from saying something you may regret ? That’s a filter. Have you ever used water from the refrigerator dispenser and had your thirst immediately relieved? That’s due to a filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid unpleasant ramifications. You filter your words for peace, 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 a family member with a low immune system or someone who’s extremely 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 regular air filter to a High Efficiency one.
If you’re not sure if a high-grade air filtration system is the best system for you, there are several other options to help keep your home’s air clean. From standard air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, review the chart below to help choose which air filtration and purification system is right for your family.
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 appliances can kill germs and even assist 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 duct systems. A UV light unit 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 systems do exactly the opposite of each other? Why would I install one instead of the other? For home comfort, humidity levels should be between 35% and 50%. Too much humidity can cause microbes, condensation and even wood damage. Not enough humidity can result in itchy skin, sinus illness, cracking wood and sore throats. Depending on the climate where you live, you most likely have too much or too little humidity.
Humidifiers add the right amount of moisture to your home’s air, helping with disease, dry skin, and deformed wood furniture and instruments. Dehumidifiers take away moisture from your home, helping to eliminate bacteria growth, and improving indoor comfort considerably.
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 comes through our duct system, it’s important to keep it from getting dirty with bacteria, mildew, and dust. When you have your ducts cleaned, ask the company to check for duct leaks, too. Leaks in the duct system can cause more contaminants to enter your air and circulate 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 enjoyable. Energy-efficiency is a great 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 lingering inside your home’s air – the air your family breathes. An air ventilation system observes indoor and outdoor temperatures and humidity and continually brings the required air replacement. This can add 5% to 10% more fresh air every 60 minutes, reducing the concentration of airborne contaminants.
Get A Home Health Report
During your next Precision tune-up, request a complete indoor air quality report from your HVAC contractor. An expert air conditioning company like Service Experts will provide a copy of your report with professional recommendations to address these and other air worries in your home.
So, yes, it’s terrifying to know that your kids are being exposed to scary respiratory diseases but next time you get that email from your kids’ school, wash their hands, cover their cough, and invest in a system to help your indoor air quality be as strong as possible.