Indoor air pollution can be more dangerous than outside pollution, because this condition can cause serious illness.
One of the serious diseases caused by indoor air pollution is Legionnaire’s disease. Legionnaire’s disease is classified as severe pneumonia due to inflammation of the lungs, which is caused by a Legionella bacterial infection. The reason is breathing air that is contaminated with bacteria.
Indoor air contamination is generally caused by air from outside the house and particles or gases released from furniture and objects inside the house. This contaminated air is the most dangerous for children and babies who most of the time are in the house and play.
Get around Air Pollution from the Outside
Natural air from outside the home contains dust, especially for those who live near industrial areas or congested highways. As a solution, you can apply the following steps.
- Use vents and windows with filters or wire screens as dust filters.
- Keep the floor clean by regularly sweeping or using a vacuum cleaner. Likewise all parts of the house such as sofas, carpets, and furniture. Clean furniture every day using a wet cloth and electronic devices using a dry cloth.
- Place the mat at the front door of the house. Also make sure everyone takes off their shoes before entering the house.
- Keep the house not too damp so that it does not become a place for bacteria and fungi to grow. This can be done using a fan or air conditioner and drying clothes outside the home.
- Plant more plants in the yard around or if possible, plants in the house, which naturally will release oxygen.
Recognize the Source of Pollution
Not only from outside the house, pollution can be sourced from objects inside the house. Recognizing these sources can help you get around and create fresher air at home.
New carpet and furniture
New carpets generally contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which can endanger health, especially children with asthma and allergies. This gas named VOC is contained in many furniture cleaners. VOCs can cause headaches, nausea, sore throat, and eye irritation. In addition to carpets, new furniture made of wood can usually contain a dangerous gas called formaldehyde which is at risk of causing respiratory problems.
Before use, furniture and carpet should be opened and dried in the day outside the house. In addition, open as much air ventilation as possible in the first days of carpet and furniture use. Also avoid using spray carpet cleaners because it will leave more chemicals on the carpet layer.
Air conditioning (air conditioner / AC) can indeed make the air inside the house feel cool. But you should clean the air conditioner regularly and intersperse with its use by opening the window in the morning or night. Otherwise, indoor and air-conditioned air exchange will not occur. This also means there is a buildup of bacteria and viruses in the room. These bacteria are generally spread when someone sneezes or coughs. In addition, although AC is useful to keep the room not too humid, excessive use of AC over time can make the skin and eyes dry.
Product air freshener
Many of us often use air freshener to create a fresh and clean atmosphere. However, it does not really clean the room of unpleasant odors, but these products only disguise odors with artificial or synthetic scents and reduce the sharpness of human smell. Some chemicals in air fresheners can also have a negative impact on health, such as ethanol, camphor, phenol, and formaldehyde. These chemicals are at risk of causing certain conditions such as migraines, asthma, dizziness, rashes.
Avoid storing paint in the house because these products generally contain VOCs. When painting walls, choose paint with a low VOC content and make sure all windows are open. Leave the window open for days after the paint dries to ensure as much VOC can be released into the outside air.
Products such as floor cleaners and detergents, especially those containing ammonia and chlorine can be at risk of causing respiratory problems. Use a mask and gloves when cleaning the house with cleaning fluid to protect the skin and respiratory system. To the extent possible, also minimize the use of spray cleaners.
As an alternative, you can try making your own cleaning fluid using a solution of vinegar or warm water added with baking soda to clean certain parts of the house.
In addition, clothing that has just been taken from cleaners, especially dry cleaning, often also contains perchlorethylene, a chemical that is proven to cause cancer in animals. Get used to aerate clothes a few days before wearing.
In addition to odor, cigarette smoke can cause passive smokers at risk of developing various diseases such as sinusitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, and worsening asthma symptoms. Cigarette smoke residue left on the floor, carpets, sofas, and pillows also leave an unpleasant odor. This condition can endanger children who often play in the area.
Gas and stove
LPG gas cylinders and leaky stoves can release carbon monoxide which can cause fatigue, headaches, nausea, and even death. While nitrogen dioxide gas can cause respiratory distress. In addition to making sure the stove and gas cylinder are installed properly, placing the object close to a window or air vent, and installing a fan can make the gas release immediately outside the house.
Don’t burn trash
Burning home waste will create various pollutants that not only damage the environment, but also worsen health conditions. Burnt rubbish causes high rates of respiratory distress symptoms, cancer, hormonal imbalances, and congenital abnormalities. Take safe and healthy actions by reducing, recycling, and reusing waste that is still feasible into a variety of unique and interesting crafts are also useful.
Also check other things that are at risk of causing unhealthy scents in the house such as emptying the contents of the trash regularly. Also check the drains and toilets.
In essence, fresh and healthy air should not be scented. Cleaning the house and reducing the use of chemicals can help create healthy air for all family members.