Air Pollution and Its Impact on Indoor Air Quality
With each passing day, tons of pollutants are released into the air. This not only increases the amount of current air pollution, it also means that you’re more likely to face the consequences of breathing this air. With more people suffering from respiratory problems, it does make one wonder why no one is paying attention to the severe consequences that air pollution is presenting.
Contrary to popular belief, the pollution released into the air doesn’t just fly away in space. The Earth has a protective layer called the ozone. This layer initially helps to keep the environment sustainable and inhabitable for us. It keeps the poisonous gases in space and keeps the healthy gases inside. On the other hand, this also means that it keeps the pollution inside too.
Every Breath You Take
Atmospheric conditions are slowly beginning to deteriorate and manifest itself in more ways. While you might believe that global warming is the only result of it but air pollution is having a bigger impact and hitting close to home. In fact, the toxins in the air you breathe are directly causing deaths across the globe.
Take a look at some of the most polluted cities in the world and you’ll see that this point is being highlighted more and more. Zabol in Iran, Gwalior and Allahabad in India, Riyadh and Al Jubail in Saudi Arabia topped the list in 2017 for the worst air pollution cities. While these might appear as cities that are further away from you, air pollution in Canada is also worsening.
In fact, data suggests that air pollution is responsible for directly or indirectly causing around 7,700 deaths that occur in Canada. Moreover, it is also linked to premature death, as well as illness, including respiratory diseases that can mar a person’s quality of life. In 2015 alone, it was estimated that air pollution-related illnesses and diseases were costing Canada a total of $36 billion on an annual basis.
The true costs in damages and problems associated with air pollution have not been fully taken into account due to the fact that air pollution has been linked to an increase in acid rains, pollutants in water, climate change and more. In some reports, scientists have simply stated that there are certain factors which have not and cannot be taken into account because the research for it just doesn’t exist.
Indoor Air Quality and You
While you might be thinking that the air outside doesn’t exactly impact your indoor air quality, you are sadly mistaken. Indoor air quality can also contain pollutants that, even if they aren’t life-threatening, will end up causing a lot of discomfort and complications.
In fact, pollutants in indoor air are quite frequently found because people usually tend to assume that they aren’t there. With nothing to fear, they often don’t look towards the signs that point to indoor air pollution until it is too late.
It should be noted that people spend a majority of their times indoors. Whether they are at home or at work, the indoor air quality of the place will make an impact on a person’s overall health. It should also be considered that exposure to indoor air pollution doesn’t always manifest itself at once. Some things can take months or even years.
Exposure to asbestos particles is notorious for this factor since illnesses, diseases and other health complications from it only arise after years. By this time, it is almost too late to help a person live a healthy life. Even if they survive, their quality of life is greatly diminished. Dust, mold and other gases can also be very problematic. Some common indoor air polluters consist of the following:
- Radon Gas – Highly toxic, radon gas occurs naturally in buildings and homes and most areas are usually checked to eliminate its presence. The toxic gas causes radiation poisoning and can also increase the likelihood of someone developing cancerous growths, tumours and suffering from organ failure. It should also be noted that since radon is colorless and odourless, it can be extremely hard to identify its presence without the help of professionals.
- Mold or Mildew – Oftentimes, the presence of excessive moisture indoors can create the perfect environment for the growth of mold or mildew. While these are usually harmful for the structural integrity of a building, mold in particular can begin to flower as they grow and mature and release spores in the air. These spores are extremely harmful for health. Their microscopic nature means that they are easily inhaled and can cause serious respiratory problems. In many cases, black mold and other types of black mold can also cause toxic mold poisoning. This not only affects the respiratory system of the person but also cause serious neural damage.
- Carbon Monoxide – Poor ventilation indoors and using heaters that release carbon monoxide can also be a huge issue. Usually during winter, many people make use of standalone heaters indoors. Despite warnings and public services, there have been cases where people have unintentionally caused carbon monoxide poisoning. Symptoms of it can manifest in the form of breathlessness, light headedness, dizziness, nausea, chest pains and increased lethargy. Exposure to carbon monoxide can result in seizures, heart arrhythmias, and loss of consciousness.
- Dust and Other foreign particles – In some cases, you might be lucky not to have any toxins other than simple old dust. However, inhaling too much dust for long periods of time can also be harmful for you. You will also be more likely to experience allergic reactions and symptoms such as watering eyes, constant sneezing, itchiness and rashes. In young children with smaller and less-developing respiratory systems, this can cause asthma as well as make them more prone to developing skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Indoor air dust can also cause breathing and respiratory problems in adults and also worsen health conditions.
As can be seen by the points mentioned above, the quality of your indoor air will play a huge role in the overall health of your family and even your pets.
Improving Indoor Air Quality
Considering the statistics, it is a good idea to actively take measures that will ensure that you and your family have healthy indoor air quality. Often times, simple steps on your part can improve the quality of your indoor air and ensure that you have a healthy breathing environment indoors. Some of the measures you can take to improve indoor air quality include the following:
- Check for Signs of Mold – If you spot a leak or the indoor environment feels particularly moist, make sure to check for signs of mold. Mold doesn’t always make itself apparent through smell or sight. It can easily appear hidden and out of sight unless it is too late. When you do spot mold, don’t try to remove it. Just call the experts and stay away from the area.
- Keep Indoor Plants - Indoor air plants are great for improving the overall quality of your air. Many indoor plants also improve the levels of oxygen in your home and help to keep it cleaner and in good condition. They are also great as decorations too so you can easily kill two birds with one stone here.
- Get the HVAC System Cleaned Out - It’s always a good idea to make sure that your HVAC system is in good condition. Sometimes, dust and other particles as well as foreign objects can end up in the HVAC system. If it isn’t cleaned, you end up unintentionally polluting your indoor air.
While these are only a few, small ways, they can have a bigger impact on the indoor air quality. With their help, you can rest assured that your home is free from any pollutants.
Work with Experts
A good thing to do is to work with experts for indoor air quality. Their expertise allows them to handle various problems. This means that they can handle mold growth and facilitate proper removal as well as deploy measures to control and eliminate the presence of radon gas, carbon monoxide, asbestos and more. When you work with the experts, you can rest assured that you will be getting quality services and amazing results. Moreover, you can also ensure that your home is truly secure and healthy for you and your family.
We Can Help You
If you are searching for a good professional to improve indoor air quality or to want to get the quality of your indoor air tested for the presence of pollutants including asbestos, radon gas, mold and more, get in touch with Air Restoration.
Specializing in fighting mold, testing the indoor air quality and also running health inspections for the presence of asbestos, Air Restoration’s experts can ensure that your home is safe and free of any asbestos exposure. To get an inspection or for more information about their services, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 226.898.3488