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Are Indoor Pollutants Making Me Ill?

Jun 19, 2008
Do you suffer from headaches, runny or itchy eyes, blocked sinuses, asthma, dizziness, nausea, fatigue or having trouble concentrating? If so you might be suffering from illnesses brought on by indoor pollutants. Although you don't realize it your home could be full of things that are making you ill. When people think about pollutants they instantly think about chemicals and other harmful substances but indoor pollutants can be much more innocent and are often not even seen by the naked eye.

If you feel as though your home or office could be making you ill there are different things that you need to consider. Take a look at the list of indoor pollutants that could easily be in your home and contributing to your illness:

Pet dander - This is the dandruff that occurs on animals very much like it does on humans. However when pets groom themselves they will spread their saliva all over their bodies, then when they shed their dander this saliva covered dandruff gets in to the air and fabrics causing irritation to some people. This irritation can take the form of skin complaints or breathing difficulties, runny eyes and nose and sneezing fits. One of the problems with this dander is that it is covered in protein which comes from the pet's saliva and it is this can be the main source of irritation, especially if you are prone to allergies. To get rid of pet dander you should vacuum regularly and change pet bedding, do not allow your pet into your bedroom as this can make your symptoms worse. You should also fit HEPA filters into your air conditioners and buy a HEPA filter vacuum.

Dust mites - These live everywhere and can be very tricky to get rid of totally. They live on dead skin cells and microscopic bits of discarded food and their feces can cause breathing difficulties and skin irritation. To remedy the problem vacuum regularly with a HEPA vacuum cleaner, keep surfaces clean and fit HEPA filters into air conditioning systems. HEPA filters catch 99.995% of airborne particles and ensure clean air in residential and commercial properties.

Radon - This is a naturally occurring noble gas that is thought to be responsible for thousands of lung cancer related deaths in the US every year. Radon gets sucked into houses through their basements and occurs when radium decays. Houses can be tested for radon and if found radon mitigation systems can be fitted and run cheaply and efficiently reducing the levels of radon indoors.

Carbon Monoxide - This is an odorless, colorless, and tasteless gas that is a by product of combustion. Appliances that burn fuel can all leak carbon monoxide if they are old or not properly maintained. CO gas is a killer and if you suffer from lethargy, nausea, dizziness and headaches, you should install a carbon monoxide detector in your home. If appliances leak CO gas the detector will sound and alert you to the danger.

Pollen - This can enter the house though open doors and windows and is a massive irritant for people who suffer from hay fever. In order to keep pollen levels to a minimum you should close doors and windows when the pollen count is high and use HEPA filters on air conditioning systems. Using a HEPA filter vacuum can also help to reduce the levels of pollen that are stuck on carpets and in upholstery.

There are of course other irritants within the home that could be making you ill such as household cleaning chemicals and tobacco smoke and these should also be kept to a minimum. Smokers should only smoke outside to prevent passive smoking and make sure that doors are kept shut whilst they are doing so.

Your local HVAC technician can help you properly fit your air conditioner with HEPA filters. Allergy proof the air in your home or office so that you can live a more comfortable life.
About the Author
Giant Mechanical is a leading Chicago area company that provides Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration, and a variety of other services. Find out how Giant Mechanical can help you with your commercial, residential, or institutional needs by visiting http://www.giantmechanical.com.
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