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Protecting Children from Toxic Dust

Administration Staff

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Thanks to increased awareness, parents are beginning to recognize the dangers of indoor air pollution. What many parents still don’t realize is that the risk extends beyond just gases and airborne chemicals.

One of the most intimidating dangers is an everyday occurrence in our homes: dust. On the surface, the notion that dust presents such a risk may seem hard to believe. What we must recognize about household dust is that it acts as a sponge. It collects harmful pollutants, and through this process, it can actually intensify the concentration.  When the dust is disturbed, those intensely concentrated harmful substances release back into the air that the children are breathing. As dust builds up in the home, you increase exposure to triggers for allergies, asthma and other respiratory distress. This exposure can be particularly harmful to young children and can actually cause the onset of various respiratory conditions.

Studies have revealed just how much of a respiratory hazard dust can be. During the inspection of average households, researchers found that dust often contains flame-retardants, lead and other metals, as well as pesticides and other harmful poisons. Modern research has also revealed that viruses, bacteria and dust mite waste can attach themselves to the household dust.

A parent’s first instinct is to target external sources. Dirty air enters our home naturally, and we track filth into the home, which then binds to the household dust. What we must recognize is that we also generate many of these harmful substances directly in the home via our activities and the products that we use. As parents, we must also appreciate that our children are at a much greater risk than we are because their bodies are still developing. Proportionate to body mass, they eat, drink and breathe more than we do.  Additionally, they consume more of the harmful substances and do not have the fully realized immune system necessary to fend off these kinds of assaults on the body.

So what should a parent do? The best advice is to approach dust like an environmental health risk. Do not allow it to accumulate in the home, which can be made possible via the following steps:

  • Clean regularly. We all lead busy lives, so we tend to tackle cleaning the house as one big task. The better way to control dust is to clean the house regularly in small amounts. Especially if you have a lot of people or pets in the home, you simply cannot dust and vacuum too often.

  • Avoid clutter, which is the surface area that dust collects on. Clutter is particularly prevalent in our children’s bedrooms, where they spend most of their time. In an optimal scenario, a child’s bedroom should have a hardwood floor, minimal furniture and decorations.

  • Avoid numerous knickknacks, toys and other objects that can provide a great surface area where the dust can collect.

  • Take care how you dust. Traditional dusting can do more harm than good. Use microfiber cloths, which are quite efficient and actually trap the dust on the cloth.

  • You should use an electrostatic duster for hard-to-reach locations in the home. Do this first so that you can collect whatever falls by dusting and then vacuuming.

  • Vacuum on a regular basis, and especially after dusting a room. Optimally, use a vacuum with a HEPA filter, which can significantly cut down on the amount of residual dust in a home. Also, the HEPA filter ensures that dust is not recirculated back into the room’s environment.

  • Bedding is one of the primary sources of dust in a home. Wash bedding every week. For items that you wash less often, such as pillows and blankets, give them a good shake outdoors.

  • Wash all other fabrics and textiles regularly. After bedding, drapes and rugs are the worst offenders. Simply washing them in hot water can remove dust and kill all dust mites.

  • Consider encasing all mattresses and pillows in allergy-proof covers.

  • Place floor mats at the inside and outside of every entrance. Always remove shoes before entering, and clean and replace those mats on a regular basis.

  • Maintain optimal indoor air quality by using a HEPA air purifier. HEPA filters trap nearly all airborne particulates that pass through the system. This has a dramatic effect on the air quality that your children breathe, and is the most effective step you can take to eradicate dust in the home.

  • Replace all air filters in the home regularly. For the HEPA filters should be changed based on the manufacturer’s recommendations. Do not change filters based on visual evidence, which can be misleading. Have a set schedule, and stick to it regardless of what the filter looks like.

  • Have the home’s ventilation system inspected and cleaned by a professional every few years. If you’ve never had such a checkup, then you should schedule one immediately.

  • Operating the house AC system with a clean filter is much better than a floor or ceiling fan as they stir the dust around and do not use filters to collect dust particles. If you do use fans, make sure to keep them well cleaned. Additionally, use a HEPA air purifier to limit dust exposure.

Remove Toxic Dust with A HEPA Air Purifier

The time to overcome the worry is now. A HEPA air purifier is an effective long-term solution to providing your children with the healthiest indoor air possible. HEPA filtration removes 99.97 percent of all airborne particulates down to 0.3 microns in size. Since that’s smaller than the smallest known dust particle, a home that has ample HEPA filtration and is regularly cleaned can be dust free. Why risk another second of indecision? Let Clean Air Plus help you choose the right HEPA air purifier for your family today.

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Clean Air Plus is a veteran and family owned small business. We represent the leading manufacturers in HEPA filtration including Austin Air, IQAir, Amaircare, Oransi and Airpura. Shop online or call one of our friendly experts at 888.247.1147. We'll be happy to help.


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