Indoor Air pollution – Causes & Ways to Decrease!

You may not pay that much attention to this issue, but indoor air pollution is something that you must think about.

Indoor Air Pollution

If ignored for a very long time, these pollutants can cause respiratory diseases. If you are already having one, then this is high time you know about these indoor pollutants and the ways to decrease them.

Indoor air pollution has many reasons. It arises from our daily used things. We are discussing these reasons below in detail.

Formaldehyde

These are some of the most common indoor pollutants that are present in paints, wooden floors, and sealants as well. These pollutants can cause watery eyes, burning sensations in the eyes, coughing, nausea, irritation in the nose, and skin irritations as well. 

Traditional cooking methods

Though we have replaced the traditional cooking methods with gas ovens and inductions, still in some outskirt areas, people burn charcoal, kerosene, and wood for cooking.

Traditional cooking methods

This is a huge source of indoor as well as outdoor pollution.

Asbestos

Asbestos is found in roof tiles, floor tiles, paints, building materials, and waterproofing materials. These are another source of indoor pollution.

Regular inhalation of such pollutants can cause severe issues like asbestosis, lung cancer, mesothelioma, and so on.

Tobacco smoke

This is nothing new to anyone. We all know how tobacco smoking is bad for our health.

It not only harms the active receiver, but the passive receivers are also harmed by it.

Lung cancer is the fatal result of tobacco smoking. You can also notice other health issues.

Detergents and soaps

Detergents and soaps have different elements to add fragrances. These sources or perfumes can be allergic to many people.

Therefore, you can count soaps and detergents in the list of indoor pollutants.

VOC

VOC stands for Volatile Organic Compounds. These compounds are readily available in our homes.

VOC

For example, in paints, air fresheners, cooking smoke, cosmetic fragrances, and so on. These can cause allergies and can be harmful to asthma patients.

Microorganisms

Cold and damp places give birth to microorganisms like bacteria, mold, and mildew. Washing machines and refrigerator gaskets are the most favorite places for these microorganisms.

Pet hairs

Pet owners should be aware of pet hairs. This may be really painful for pet owners, but it is true that they can harm you.

Pet hairs can severely affect your lungs.

Carpets

Carpets are another source of pollutants. Pet hairs, dust particles, and dirt can adhere to the carpet surface.

Carpets

Inhalation of such elements can cause a runny nose, itchy nose, irritation in the throat, and so on.

Solutions

Vacuum your carpets

If you use carpets in your home, then it is vital to clean them regularly. The only way to clean them properly is to vacuum them.

So, if you are using carpets in your home, make sure you use a vacuum cleaner to clean them properly.

Install an exhaust fan in the bathroom and kitchen. The kitchen chimney is another option for the kitchen.

One of the main sources of VOC is cooking smoke. To reduce kitchen smoke and stop them from spreading in the home, you should always use a kitchen chimney or an exhaust fan.

Exhaust fans can be used in the bathroom as well. Why so?

Because humidity causes mold and mildew, molds carry micro particles that can cause coughs and colds after entering your body.

So, it will be better for you if you keep your home free from humidity.

Use hair spray and other aromatic products in ventilated areas

The hair sprays, nail paints, smell of varnish, perfumes, and other products from this category are active sources of VOC. So these can circulate in your house if you use them in a covered area.

Thereby, when using such components, make sure they get space to get out of your room.

Make the kitchen well-ventilated

As we already said, an exhaust fan and kitchen chimney can be great ways to expel cooking smoke. But another way out is to keep the windows of the kitchen open.

But make sure that you shut off the windows of the other rooms. Otherwise, the expelled smoke will enter again inside the rooms.

Do not smoke indoors

It is advisable not to smoke at all. Still, if you are not ready for that now, at least try to avoid doing it indoors.

Eliminate the odors totally

It is a bad idea to eliminate bad smells from your rooms using a room freshener. These do not eliminate the smell totally.

Instead, they cover the smell, and after sometimes they appear again. Not only that but also they produce VOC.

So, when you face an odorous environment in your room, try to clean the area with homemade cleansers or baking soda. This can help without causing any harm to you.

Do not let the microorganisms build

You might know how bacteria and moulds build, when you keep your foods uncovered, when your home is damp when enough sunlight cannot enter the indoor areas, and so on.

So, when you are watering your indoor plants or mopping the floors, make sure you dry the area properly. Do not let the areas consist of water.

Keep the windows open to enter sunlight.

Keep your foods covered or refrigerate them.

Clean the washing machine gasket because an irregular cleaning accumulates moulds in them. And these can release a bad smell.

Cleaning and dusting

Regular cleaning and dusting are an essential part of maintaining hygiene in your home. So clean your house regularly to get rid of dust and dirt.

Make homemade cleansers

As we said formerly that the commercial soaps and detergents use artificial fragrances that can be allergic to you. Not only that, but they consist of environmentally harmful chemicals as well.

In such circumstances, the best option is to use homemade cleansers. You can get various simple processes to make homemade soaps and detergents.

These are helpful for asthma patients.

Do not use fresheners.

Fresheners produce unnatural fragrances. These are created by using chemicals.

First of all, these are one of the primary sources of VOC. Secondly, the chemicals they produce can be allergic to your skin.

Therefore, these are harmful and can ruin indoor air quality.

Keep shoes outdoors

Shoes can be the conductor for outdoor dust, dirt, and microorganisms in your home. So it will be wiser if you keep your shoes outside.

You can make a shoe rack outside your door and keep them there.

Keep the dustbins covered.

We all have dustbins in our kitchens and bathrooms. These are the bed for bacteria, clutter, and also bad smell.

So, always try to buy a dustbin that has a cover.

Having a cover is not all. Make sure you empty them regularly.

The more you will keep your surroundings clean, the less pesticide you would be using. As a result, you will get rid of bad odors and chemical pesticide odors as well.

Keep indoor plants

Some of the indoor plants work as natural room fresheners—for example, Pothos, Spider plant, rubber plant, lemongrass, and so on.

Keep Indoor Plants

They can be very helpful in producing clean indoor air.

Test the car emission tests regularly

If you use a car for your daily travelling, then you spend much of your time in your car as well. So maintaining the hygiene of your car interior is another important thing.

So make sure you check your car’s emissions regularly. Also, vacuum the seats and other areas properly.

Get rid of radon

Radon is a radioactive gas that is naturally produced from rocky soil and groundwater.

They enter your house through cracks and gaps in your home.

Overconsumption of this can cause your children developmental problems. So, take a test whether your home is radon-free or not.

Use carbon monoxide detectors.

Carbon monoxide can be very harmful to health. These are mainly produced from the fireplace or kitchen.

Improper ventilation can cause carbon monoxide to build up. So having detected the presence of this gas can let you know if your home has this harmful gas or not.

Fix water leakages

Water leakages result in making your home air humid.

This can increase the mold and mildew build-up, which can cause you colds, coughs, and fungal infections as well.

So whenever you find any leakage in the water supply, try to fix that immediately.

Wash the beddings

If you do not know, then please note that your mattress and cushions collect the most amount of dust mites. These are the greatest source of indoor pollutants.

So make sure that you vacuum your mattress regularly with a better quality vacuum cleaner.

Also, wash the bed sheets and cushion covers at least once a week.

Avoid scented candles

Scented candles consist of harmful chemicals to produce scent. They can harm you if you breathe them.

Allergies and irritation are widespread results of using these products. So better you avoid them.

Use good quality furnace filters

Furnaces can be one of the primary sources of indoor pollutants. The furnace filters often release small smoke and dust particles along with carbon monoxide.

The modern filters are designed to eliminate air pollution up to 99.97%. So, advanced furnace filters are better for good indoor air.

Keep your pets clean

Your pet hairs are more prone to get dirty. Therefore keep them clean. Give them a regular bath.

Keep their paws clean. Comb their hairs neatly so that there remain no free hairs. 

As free hairs are also counted as indoor pollutants, make sure you pay attention to this.

Change your clothes immediately after entering home

Your clothes can be another source of pollutant conductor like your shoes. Viruses, bacteria, dust, and dirt are easily adhesive to your clothes. 

So make sure you take them out and wash them. If possible, take a bath or clean your hands and legs properly.

Wash the shower curtains regularly

Shower curtains face water so that they can build up mold and mildew very easily.

So, make sure you wash them regularly.

Clean the gutters regularly

Clogged water from the refrigerator, AC, and gutters can build up larva and attract germs. So to keep your indoor environment pollution-free, you need to focus on such matters.

Freezing the soft toys can be a way out

Soft toys can accumulate dust and dirt just like your mattress. They can also form bacteria and viruses.

To get rid of this, you can vacuum them or freeze them for about five to six hours. This can expel bacteria and viruses.

Keep the temperature to 18 degrees in winters

Winter is the favourite season for bacteria and viruses as they get cold and damp environments everywhere. So, to keep your home safe, keep the home temperature more than 18 degrees. 

This will prevent the development of fungi and other microorganisms.

Use synthetic doormats

Jute door mats release particles that can enter your home and act as pollutants. But the synthetic doormats are not similar to them.

They do not release any fiber that can harm your surrounding air.

Final words

If you were not that much worried about your indoor air quality, then we hope, after reading this, you will pay some attention to it. Indoor air pollution is not a negligible thing.

Rather it is more harmful than outdoor pollution. Your home is the ultimate destination where you stay for the longest period. Your children and the older members are also there.

So you should always pay attention to the air quality of your home. Air purifiers and air conditioners with high-quality filters can also help in this matter.

So make sure you take the necessary precautions and breathe fresh air every time.

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