Another note. Yes, another note about the diseases going around your kids’ school. Croup. Strep. Influenza. Respiratory syncytial virus. Just looking at the words is enough to send moms and dads into a panic. The CDC announced that RSV causes an average of 57,527 hospitalizations among kids five and under each year in the United States. So how do you help make sure your family is safe?
Understand Indoor Air Pollution
The CDC warns that poor indoor air quality can advance lung diseases such as asthma and also cause headaches, nausea, and fatigue. Likewise, the American College of Allergists report that 50% of all diseases are either caused or intensified by polluted indoor air. The Texas DSHS said that air within homes and buildings can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air, and in serious cases, 1000 times more polluted. There are two primary causes of poor indoor air quality:
- Pollutant substances (cleaning products, poorly maintained or unsanitary heating and cooling or humidification systems, tobacco, etc)
So all this info – what is it for? What do you do? How can you make sure you and your family aren’t breathing sullied, virus-inducing air?
Luckily, there are options.
Get Proactive On Air Filtration
Have you ever been angry 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 satisfied? That’s because of a filter. Filters keep toxicity in check and avoid unpleasant ramifications. You filter your words for peace, you filter your water for health, why wouldn’t you filter your air?
Many hospitals use a high-efficiency air filtration system called HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air), which you can get for your home if you have someone living there with a low immune system or someone who’s highly susceptible to disease. Even if nobody has respiratory issues in your family, you’ll be instantly surprised by the almost instant change from a regular 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 clean your family’s air. From basic air cleaners to electronic air cleaners, see below to help determine which air filtration and purification system is right for your family.
Help Control Germs With Germicidal Systems
Germi-what? 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 contraptions can kill germs and even help stop 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 device will help sanitize and disinfect indoor air to help you reach the highest air quality possible.
Optimize Moisture with Humidifiers or Dehumidifiers
Um, don’t those two things do precisely the opposite of each other? Why would I want one rather than the other? For home comfort, humidity levels should be between 35% and 50%. Too much humidity can cause microbes, condensation and even wood damage. Too little humidity can result in dry skin, sinus sickness, fractured wood and sore throats. Depending on where you live, chances are you have too much or too little humidity.
Humidifiers add the ideal amount of moisture to your air, helping with sickess, dry skin, and distorted wood furniture and instruments. Dehumidifiers take away moisture from your home, helping to stop bacteria growth, and improving indoor comfort a great deal.
Don’t Dismiss Duct Cleaning
It’s almost spring and that means spring cleaning! Don’t neglect your ducts during this refreshing time. Since most of our in-home air enters through our duct system, it’s vital to keep it from getting dirty with bacteria, mildew, and dust. When you have your ducts cleaned, ask the technician 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 challenge to become more energy-efficient, homes are often sealed tighter and insulated more thoroughly to make sure air isn’t escaping while our heating and cooling systems work to keep our home pleasant. Energy-efficiency is a great thing, but it also means a lower amount of airflow, less circulation, and reduced movement. This can cause the air to become motionless and contaminants (indoor air pollution) are lingering inside your home’s air – the air you breathe. An air ventilation system detects 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, decreasing 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 issues 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 note from your childs’ school, wash their hands, cover their cough, and invest in a system to help your indoor air quality be the best it can be.