Advent Eco house concept

IAQ: Facts You Need To Know

When someone mentions the word “pollution,” what does it make you think of? Do you think about car exhaust fumes, factories spewing forth black clouds of filthy smoke, dirty rivers, and acid rain? Those are things that people typically envision when someone talks about pollution. Most of us don’t imagine that our own homes and other buildings we use frequently are actually massive producers of indoor air pollution. Does that surprise you? If so, the facts about indoor air quality outlined in this article may leave your jaw feeling a little bit slack.

Did you know, for example, that the cozy atmospheric candles you light in your home each evening could be damaging your health? If your candles are made out of paraffin as opposed to soy or beeswax, then they give off the cancer-causing carcinogens toluene and benzene each time you light them up.

Air fresheners are every bit as harmful as candles to human health. They contain dangerous chemicals called phthalates. They can stop children developing the way they should reproductively by interfering with their hormones. Phthalates can also worsen respiratory ailments such as asthma or bronchitis.

The furniture in your home may be having a negative impact on the indoor air quality. It depends when you purchased the furniture. Any furniture purchased before 2006 will have been sprayed with a fire retardant chemical which releases toxic fumes into the air.

Asthma is the most common ailment that is exacerbated by poor indoor air quality. Having asthma can put frustrating limits on your life style, since stress or any kind of strenuous aerobic activity can trigger an attack. If you have asthma, then you’ll know how horrendous it feels to have an attack. It is akin to trying to get all of your oxygen from a straw with a one millimeter circumference. If you think that suffering through such an ordeal would make you panic horrendously, you are correct.

Older people and those with disabilities that limit their agility are the most at risk from poor indoor air quality. This is simply because the elderly and disabled have no option other than to spend more time indoors than the rest of us.

Fortunately, you don’t have to just tolerate poor indoor air quality in your home. There are things you can do to limit it. For example, you could invest in a good quality air filter, and open your windows regularly to give the place an airing.

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