It is common knowledge that clean surroundings promote healthy living. Dirt, dust and pollution of all kind are hazardous to health. If you thought all the hazardous pollution happens outside our homes, then you are in for a surprise reading this.
Scientists from the US Environmental Protection Agency believe the air inside is more toxic than it is outside. Their belief is based on the fact that we spend 90 percent of our lives indoors. Pesticides, gases, mites and moulds cause this toxicity. Living indoors, we are putting ourselves at greater risks. We face the risk of becoming ill or contracting life shortening diseases.
Plywood, press board, and other manufactured woods are increasingly used in house decor. Wooden flooring is becoming the modern trend in flooring. The manufactured woods use formaldehyde to glue the different layers together. Formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds can cause nausea, dizziness and allergy symptoms. Continuous exposure to such chemicals can cause serious health issues. Chronic exposure can damage the liver and the central nervous system.
Fire and flame retardants found in mattresses, upholstery, television, computer casings and circuit boards contain hazardous chemicals. Studies have shown that these chemicals can cause learning and memory problems, low sperm count and thyroid malfunction.
What could we do to reduce these risks?
We should ensure that our homes are well ventilated. Allow fresh air to circulate at all times. The fresh air will dilute the odour from the formaldehyde and other injurious chemicals, making the air we breath much cleaner. There are lots of eco-friendly decorating materials that are volatile organic compound and chemical free. Discard or destroy any old polyurethane foam furniture. Cleaning at regular intervals with a good vacuum cleaner will prevent the dust and dirt from polluting the air we breathe. Use a vacuum cleaner that is fitted with HEPA filter. It is more efficient at trapping small particles and will remove contaminants and other allergens.