Do your kids seem to catch every cold that goes around or suffer with sniffles and sneezes when pollen counts are high? By improving the quality of the air in your home, you can keep your children healthier. Here is important information on how to help your kids feel better and stay well.
There’s something in the air.
Even though you can’t see them, there are tiny particles in your home which could be contributing to illnesses in your children. Invisible particles, such as mold, pet dander, smoke, and chemicals, are considered to be indoor pollutants. In fact, the pollution levels in your home can be two to five times higher than outside. Air pollution comes from irritants such as dust mites, cleansers, air fresheners, carbon monoxide, and paint, and that is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to pollutants. Those pollutants can contribute to respiratory illnesses and infections. You should watch for symptoms such as fever, coughing, sore throat, wheezing, and panting and take your child to the doctor if you spot trouble. Thankfully, there are several steps you can take to reduce pollutants in your home and stop those health concerns in their tracks.
Methods to improve the quality of air in your home!
Do your kids suffer from allergies or asthma? Many things can be contributing factors, but you can help reduce the allergens in your home. If your home is equipped with an HVAC system, using an air conditioner instead of opening windows can help to prevent additional allergens from entering your home. Because your home’s HVAC system is pushing the air around within your home, make sure you properly maintain it. As Everyday Health explains, HVAC maintenance can be your first defense against allergies. Change the air filters on your system regularly and be sure to use the right size filter for your system. Hire a professional to inspect the system every year. Also watch for any indicators you should have your ductwork cleaned, such as mildew or moldy odors.
Do you have any furry family members? Another important step in controlling allergens is to groom your pets often and avoid letting them on your furniture. Pet dander and other debris can get into a surprising variety of nooks and crannies. Wash pet bedding regularly, dust your home once per week and choose window coverings you can clean frequently. Remove carpet and install smooth surface flooring, or if you must have carpet, ensure you vacuum and shampoo it frequently.
Clean and dry.
Check your home for any evidence of moisture issues, such as leaks or condensation. This could occur around areas like windows, your foundation, or around vents. Keep your gutters and drains free of leaves and other matter which could cause them to clog and overflow. Also be alert to lingering moisture in your bathrooms. Control any dampness to avoid mold and mildew, since they can be major sources of allergy problems. After resolving any leaks or other sources of moisture, if you have any water damaged material, such as drywall, flooring, or subflooring, it should be removed and replaced with clean material.
Refresh your air.
There are a few things you can add to your home to help reduce indoor pollutants. Adding an air purifier can be a boon to allergy sufferers, especially in homes with pets and carpeting. Indoor plants are natural air purifiers as well. Consider spider plants, which are a good choice for those who lack a green thumb. MindBodyGreen points out aloe vera is another good option, especially since it can serve double duty by helping with skin care.
Another idea is to add essential oils to your home. Some essential oils not only provide aromatherapy; they help to clean your home’s air. Look for lemon, eucalyptus, cinnamon leaf, or tea tree for the best results.
Providing your family with clean air is a key to good health. Control allergens and be alert to moisture concerns. By taking steps to control indoor pollution, you and your children can breathe easier.
Do you have any other solutions to improve the quality of air in your home? Share them with other readers in the comments or on our Facebook page here.
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