“air pollution is now the world’s largest single environmental health risk.” ~ WHO
Most people have heard about pollution on a global scale before. You’ve probably heard about the effects greenhouse gasses have on our ozone layer. Unfortunately, there is potential for a lot more air pollution that you may not have heard of. Here is a breakdown of how pollution is categorised.
Air pollution is broken down into 3 major categories.
- Criteria air pollutants– Carbon monoxide, Lead, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone,
Particles, and Sulfur dioxide. Think of these as outdoor air pollutants coming from a range of things like factory and car emissions, fires, and large construction sites.
- Air Toxics or hazardous air pollutants – Any human made toxin, generally outdoor air in major cities. However, this can include home toxins, like cigarette smoke. Currently, the EPA regulates 187 hazardous air pollutants.
- Biological pollutants – Any living organisms, or their products that can be hazardous to plant, animal, and human health. Examples of biological pollutants are bacteria, molds, mildew, viruses, general home dust, mites, cockroaches, and pollen.
There is a general large concern about global pollution problems. Global pollutions regulated and usually in the public eye. This can be on social media or your local news channel. Global pollution problems get talked about a lot. The problem with that is we forget to think about personal air pollution.
Personal Air Pollution
Personal air pollution is any type of bad air quality in or near the home that has the potential to affect its occupants. In many cases, indoor air is more polluted than your outdoor air. This becomes a huge concern. Since the average person resides inside most of their time. Poor indoor air quality may cause respiratory issues, a simple runny nose, or itchy throat. Some people experience headaches, dizziness, and fatigue as a result of poor air quality. Luckily all these symptoms will cease if the air pollutant has been cleared.
Unfortunately extended, or long-term exposure to indoor air pollutants could cause more adverse effects like respiratory diseases, heart diseases, and cancer. That’s why it is important to assess your personal indoor air quality just as much as pollutants on a global scale.
Is there mould on walls in a bathroom in your home?
The biggest example of an in-home air pollutant is mould. Mould occurs in wet, damp areas, and it’s a bigger problem than you would think. Finding mould on walls in a bathroom is a very common problem. Mould can have short-term and long-term effects on human health. If not taken care of properly there is a risk of death for children, the elderly, and those with a weak immune system. The exposure to mould or constant dampness increases the risk of respiratory issues, especially for those already struggling with asthma.
The World Health Organization Press Release
There are potentially hundreds of other air pollutants hurting humanity every day. The World Health Organization said this in a March, 2014 Press Release “In new estimates released (on March 25, 2014), WHO reports that in 2012 around 7 million people died – one in eight of total global deaths – as a result of air pollution exposure. This finding more than doubles previous estimates and confirms that air pollution is now the world’s largest single environmental health risk. Reducing air pollution could save millions of lives.”
How do we combat and prevent such a problem right in our own home?
The overall goal should be to assess the home environment for any source of air pollution. Then control the problem, or reduce the problem. There are many variations to the source of indoor air pollution. However, there are some easy and affordable things you can do to improve your personal indoor air quality.
Affordable Options to Improve Indoor Air Quality
- Purchase indoor plants that improve air quality. Some plants that can improve your air quality according to NASA are:
- English Ivy
- Bamboo Palm
- Chinese Evergreen
- Indoor Ficus Tree
- Gerbera Daisy
- Janet Craig
- Mass Cane (more commonly known as the corn plant)
- Spider Plant
- Peace Lily
- Potted Mums
- Locate the location of any dampness, or water leak and correct that as soon as it begins.
- If you really find mould on walls in a bathroom, get it taken care of right away. Make a solution of 1 part bleach to 2 parts water and wash the walls.
- Do Not smoke indoors, carbon monoxide is a major health issue.
- Consider carbon monoxide from other sources like leaving a car idling in the garage for too long.
- Install a carbon monoxide detector (if you are renting your landlord should already have this installed).
- Purchasing a dehumidifier for your home can be very beneficial.
- Radon naturally occurs in soil and rock and is hazardous to your health. Radon is the second leading causes of lung cancer. In-home tests can be affordably purchased to prevent a fatal problem.
- Ventilate extremely well when painting.
- Clean up after your pet, pet dandruff, saliva, and feces can all be contaminants in your home.
- Proper ventilation is important. Opening a window will help as long as the air outside is cleaner.
The science community agrees indoor air pollution is a major problem that could be corrected or at least subsided. The first step is being aware and then you can move forward with identifying how clean your personal air space is.
www.mouldremoving.com is a website dedicated to getting rid of mould in the home. It features tips on the best way to combat mould and provides extensive reviews of the best dehumidifiers and other devices for busting mould on the market.