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The Simple Way to Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

cat with fan

All of us face a variety of risks to our health as we go about our day-to-day lives. Driving in cars, flying in planes, engaging in recreational activities, and being exposed to environmental pollutants all pose varying degrees of risk. Some risks are simply unavoidable. Some we choose to accept because to do otherwise would restrict our ability to lead our lives the way we want. And some are risks we might decide to avoid if we had the opportunity to make informed choices. Indoor air pollution is one risk that you can do something about.

How indoor air quality is affected by things in the home

Indoor air quality (IAQ) depends on three primary components: temperature, air flow, and the concentration of airborne particles. There is some evidence that most U.S. homes are under-inflated, which may explain why many houses have higher indoor temperatures than the ambient air temperature. Some homes also may be over-inflated, especially if they are old and have a lower ceiling height. When you adjust a house's temperatures, you change the air density and therefore increase the mixing of particles with the air, and therefore decrease the risk of exposure. The stronger the mixing, the better the IAQ. Changes in temperature or changes in room dimensions will also affect air flow and hence the rate at which particles are inhaled.

What causes these problems?

Most of the issues that cause indoor air pollution are invisible to the naked eye. Air pollutants come in many forms and can be produced by many different sources. Pollutants come from the homes, businesses, and public spaces where we live, as well as many different places outside of those homes. Indoor air pollutants can be associated with many of the same health problems as those that emanate from the outdoor air we breathe. It's important to understand that indoor air pollutants don't create a hazardous situation on their own. In some cases, pollutants in the air can help normalize the naturally occurring health issues associated with other pollutants that we breathe in our outdoor air.

What can be done to improve indoor air quality?

Have your home or office insulated and sealed. You might also consider building your house in a way that encourages you to keep the windows and doors closed, regardless of the weather. A basic requirement for removing indoor air pollutants is making sure that the room you’re in is clear of any carbon, chemicals, dust, mold or pollen. This can be accomplished by ensuring that your air filter is properly installed, and that the doors and windows are kept closed. Don’t Use the Whole Room Make sure you turn off any equipment you’re not using, such as computers or TVs. Check if there are any chemicals, detergents, cleaners, dyes, alcohol, parabens, perfumes or other products lingering in your air. Are there odors wafting through the air?


I hope you enjoy this information, and that it helps you make healthier choices. You can make changes to improve your health in a variety of ways. You just have to do it. And remember, Temperature running high, call the Doctor!