Indoor Air Quality
Most people rarely think about air quality, yet over the past few decades people are discovering that in many cases the air quality in their homes may be making them sick and even killing them. Poor indoor air quality is the result of many different types of contaminates such as chemicals, gases, mildew, mold, dust mites, cockroaches, tobacco smoke and even pesticides.
Poor indoor air quality is known to play a role in the increase in children’s asthma. Indoor air pollution can come from a number of hidden sources and the pollution can be up to five times higher than outdoors particularly in the winter, due to the offgassing of toxins by carpets, furniture, paint, etc. The air quality can have a very detrimental impact on your health.
Recurring sneezing, stuffiness, headaches, fatigue or dizziness could be due to Poor air quality in your home. If your health problems are the result of exposure to indoor air pollution, seek professional help to improve your air quality and increase your comfort. Also, if someone in your family has a heightened sensitivity to excess particles, chemicals, humidity, allergies or other problems associated with poor air quality you may want to take some time to investigate the air quality in your home and do something about it. As a homeowner you can investigate the air quality using a kit. Air quality test kits can be ordered directly from Mold & Bacteria Consulting Laboratories to begin the sample collection process. There are several air quality test kit packages from which to select.
Poor indoor air quality can also be a problem in offices. If you are concerned about the air quality in your workplace, talk to your co-workers and supervisors to see if others are experiencing similar adverse health effects and discuss possible solutions with your employer. If your building manager or employer refuses to address the problem, you can contact the public health officials to see if they can help you or guide you to the relevant authorities.
How to Maintain Good Air Quality
Although it may not seem like much, but cleaning your home regularly will significantly reduce allergens and improve the air quality in your residence. Installing an efficient air purification system in your home can reduce bacteria by 99.9%.
Too much dust can reduce the air quality in your home. If you want to reduce dust, consider replacing your drapes and curtains with window blinds, and replacing your carpet with hardwood flooring. Also, don’t prop doors open and don’t leave windows open. The air quality on the inside of a building with a well maintained envelope contains less particulates and less humidity than the air of unconditioned outside air. Help the existing air conditioning system to do its job by keeping the unconditioned air on the outside of the envelope and the conditioned air on the inside of the envelope.
Indicator of Outdoor Air Quality
The air quality index (AQI) is a measure of air quality. It is a standardized indicator of the air quality in a given location. It tells you how clean or dirty your air is, and what steps you can take to protect your health. The AQI ranges from 0 to 500 and is based on the measured or estimated levels of five regulated air pollutants: fine PM, ground level ozone (smog), carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide.
The higher the air quality index the higher the related risk. Good or low corresponds to acceptable or low risk situations. High values present an unhealthy high risk for respiratory ailments.