Believe it or not, but the air inside your home may be more polluted than that outside. Recent studies have shown that the air inside our homes can be three to five times more polluted than the air outside.
Specially during the winter, the air quality inside gets worse since windows and doors are kept closed to keep the inside warm. And, this polluted air can affect your health. The trapped pollutants and allergens are the root cause of many diseases.
Here are some ways to keep the air clean at home.
1. Clean your home
It may be tempting to put off cleaning chores especially if your schedule is tight. It is, however, vital to clean your house thoroughly on a regular basis so as to remove the allergens and irritants. Using a feather duster may appear easy and effective, but a damp cloth works better at trapping and removing microparticles from surfaces. Remember hard-to-reach places like the ceiling fans and behind the refrigerator.
Use nontoxic, unscented, non-aerosol cleaning products that do not have any harmful vapors. Buy a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to trap all the fine particles like tobacco smoke, gas and chemicals particulates and tiny pollutants from the air in your home. Use the HEPA filter for the central air systems and the portable air purifiers. Remember to change the filters regularly.
2. Air purifying plants
Research done by NASA shows that certain plants can be used to clean the air in closed spaces like their shuttles during missions. Those requiring low amounts of light are better at absorbing the air pollutants, therefore, improving the air quality within the home.
Among these plants are potted mums, English Ivy, Gerbera Daisies, Dracaena and Golden Pothos. Others are butterfly palm, rubber tree, peace lily, and Chinese evergreen.
3. Eliminate the source
There are a few regular things we do that decrease the pollution of air in the home. These include avoiding smoking in the house and not warming up the car while inside the garage attached to the house. If you are addicted to smoking, get an e-juice of your choice, which is sure to cut down smoking pollutants.
Using air humidifiers during winter to keep the air from being dry can also breed mold that produces mold spores that are dangerous to humans when breathed in. Use a humidifier meter to measure the moisture levels and keep it in check. When cooking, use an exhaust fan or open the kitchen window to flush out the smoke. Ensure you maintain all fuel burning appliances properly to prevent the emission of pollutants into the home. Placing carbon monoxide detectors in the home can monitor and alert you of any such problems.
Avoid the use of chemicals and synthetic fibers for cleaning and other purposes like painting the house, instead, look for natural alternatives to the chemicals. Try to eliminate as many of these as possible, and the air in your home will be much cleaner for better health.
4. Increase ventilation
Other than just opening the windows, you need to do more. The openings should allow for full circulation within the home. Since the outside air may be less polluted, adequate flow is required to refresh the air inside.
5. Natural air conditioning
Instead of just opening your windows during the summer months to help with air circulation, consider additional options like using ceiling fans, installing heat blocking window treatments and growing plants for shade.
6. Use beeswax candles
For natural light, use beeswax candles instead of paraffin wax candles that release petroleum by-products into the home air. Beeswax burns very clean, ionizes the air to neutralize contaminants and toxic compounds. Besides, this kind of wax burns very slowly meaning you don’t have to replace them so often.
7. Salt lamps
This is a natural ionic air purifier that effectively pulls toxins from the air and neutralizes them. This Himalayan pink salt lamp can be used in any room both for its functionality and as a decoration.
8. Activated charcoal
Use activated charcoal to purify the air in your home. This odorless and highly absorptive material is also known as active carbon and can effectively filter air trapping micro particles from the room.
You need to know that even a single exposure to polluted air can bring you dry eyes, sneezing, headaches, drowsiness and skin rashes. Children and the aged can be affected more severely as well as those sensitive to chemicals. So take care to purify the air at home as much as possible.
Featured photo credit: austinair.com via austinair.com