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Indoor Air Pollution Can Be Hazardous To Your Health

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Outdoor air pollution is an obvious danger because it’s hard to miss. Auto exhausts, industrial waste, city smog—everyone knows they’re a health hazard. But there’s another threat just as dangerous—a hidden threat because we’re immersed in it, and therefore usually unaware of it.

That's the threat of indoor air pollution. The dangers posed by poor indoor air quality are too often underestimated and overlooked. Indoor air pollution can be many times higher than the outside environment. A study by the EPA estimates that, on average, the air in our homes and offices is two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. Scientific studies have found that indoor air pollution aggravates and exacerbates the symptoms of allergies and asthma, and contribute to causing nausea, fatigue, headaches, hormonal imbalances, and damage to the kidneys, liver, and central nervous system. Evidence has even been found linking poor indoor air quality to certain cancers and vascular problems.

Children who spend eighty percent of their time indoors are particularly affected by indoor air pollution. A study published by Dr. Rebecca Altman, a lecturer from Tufts University, alerted people to the magnitude that people’s unawareness of the harmful condition of their indoor air quality contributed to the problem. She also pointed out another obstacle to resolving the problem in that poor indoor air quality is hardly ever the result of just one cause. To convey how vast and expansive the list of agents that contribute to indoor air pollution is, consider the following mere sampling:

In addition, there are the biological pollutants including mildews, mold and mold spores, bacteria, pollen, animal dander, dust mites, and viruses. Harmful building materials—including those used for remodeling and renovation—are also contributors such as paint, glue, lacquers, plywood and particle board.

Our homes aren’t the only indoor areas affected by indoor air pollution. Offices are affected too—sometimes more so—with their copy machines and printers, fluids and inks and processing solutions. Fortunately there are ways to reduce indoor air pollution and improve indoor air quality in your home and office.

A major first step would be the use of a top quality HEPA air purifier. A HEPA air purifier runs quietly and indiscriminately in the background as you live your regular life. Leading health advocates and authorities, including The American Lung Association, recommend HEPA filters because they are very beneficial in removing particles from the air. HEPA air purifiers are ozone-free unlike some air cleaners that off gas ozone. HEPA filters provide 99.97% filtration of airborne particles down to a size of 0.3 microns in diameter. 

Other ways to improve indoor air quality include radon detectors in your home, regular household cleanings using biodegradable, non-toxic cleaning agents, and using green building materials for all your construction projects.

Buying a HEPA air purifier is a small price to pay to keep you and your family safe from indoor air pollution.

 

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