Know and Beware the Sources of Deadly Home Air Pollution

Little Girl with Toys Wearing MaskAir pollution comes not only from vehicle exhaust fumes, cigarette smoke, or industrial smog which you can feel outside your home. Air pollution can also threaten your health even when you are inside your house. Substances that can cause pollution is called pollutants. When these substances often harm other living beings. A substance can also be called a pollutant if it exceeds the normal amount and is present at the wrong time and place. Here are some sources of air pollution in the home you need to know and beware.

Electronics & plastic products
When you just buy new electronic items and plastic products, give a large vent in the house to let the chemical odor disappear. Use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of the dust on your computer, printer, and television. Do this periodically. Products made ​​of polyvinyl chloride emit phthalates, a substance which is often linked to the cause of abnormal hormonal and reproductive problems. Plastics can also trigger the release of polybrominated diphenyl ether, which could potentially lead to changes in behavior. So, be sure to provide good ventilation in order to create a smooth air circulation in your house.

Wall paint
Wall paint can release VOC substances when it dries, which can cause headaches, nausea, or dizziness. People with asthma are  required to wear a mask during the process of painting until the paint is completely dry because the paint could cause an acute respiratory disorder. Cleaning materials and paint spray adhesive also contain methylene chloride that can cause cancer in animals. In order to reduce those risks, use low VOC paint. When painting the walls or home appliances, open the windows and doors  wide and create a good air circulation with the help of a fan. Do not forget to wear a mask when painting.

In the garage 
Turning on your car engine in a closed garage is a dangerous activity which can be a source of pollutants in your home. When the combustion process in the engine is not perfect, then it produces gas CO (carbon monoxide) that comes out to fill up the room. This will certainly endanger people in the garage. In addition, turning on the air conditioning when sleeping in a closed car is also dangerous. Leaks of CO will exhaust into the car, so it can cause death.

Oven, microwave, and stove
Home appliances radiate heat, especially a gas stove that could potentially generate carbon monoxide which can cause headache, dizziness, fatigue and even death if the home ventilation is very bad.

Heating devices can also produce nitrogen dioxide which can cause respiratory problems and problems of the eyes, nose and throat infections. So make sure that the household electronic appliances are placed in a corner with good ventilation.

Glue and adhesives substances
Glue, tape or other adhesive materials may contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as acetone or methyl ethyl ketone. These substances can irritate the eyes and affect the nervous system. Cement on rubber contains n-hexane, a kind of toxin that attacks the nervous system. While adhesives generally contain formaldehyde which is also harmful to the body. Choose a water-based and formaldehyde free glue. When applying the glue, make sure the the house has a good air circulation.

New carpet
New carpet or wall covering usually causes a pungent smell of chemicals. That’s because new carpet spread 4-PC, a chemical at the bottom of the carpet to keep the carpet not damaged when being stored in the shop. The pungent odor will disappear within a few days or weeks. But for people who are sensitive to chemicals, that odor can cause headaches, coughing, and hoarseness. When installing the new carpet, make sure the doors and windows are open so that the chemicals smell can get out of the room. Wear a mask when doing this.

Image credit: healthyhomescoalition.org 

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