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INDOOR AIR POLLUTION
As dangerous as polluted outdoor air can be to health, indoor air pollution actually poses a far greater heath risk. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), indoor air is two to five times more polluted than outdoor air on average. If you’re like the typical person you spend an astonishing 90% of your life indoors.
The health effects of indoor air pollutants range from short-term problems like eye and throat irritation to long-term illnesses like respiratory disease and cancer. Based on cancer risk alone, federal scientists have ranked indoor air pollution as one of the most important environmental problems in the US.
Here are more important facts to consider about indoor air pollution
Those especially vulnerable to the health risks of indoor pollutants include infants, the elderly, those with heart and lung diseases, people with asthma, and anyone who has developed extreme sensitivity to chemicals. Making matters worse, these are often the people who spend the most time indoors.
Why You Must Pay Serious Attention to Molds in Your Home
Mold has been getting a lot press the last few years, especially since “sick building syndrome”. , has become associated with mold. Just to define terms, molds are microscopic, musty-smelling members of the fungi (fungus) family. Molds reproduce by releasing tiny spores into the air. Because these spores are so small, they can reach deep into your respiratory tract. Three of the most common molds/fungi found indoors are Aspergillus, Stachybotrys, and Penicillium. Both mold particles and mold spores in your home can lead to health problems, along with an even-scarier mold hazard.
Although you may have heard the term “toxic mold”, it is actually a toxic substance released by some molds (called a mycotoxin) that is the most dangerous. The health hazards of some of these mycotoxins from molds such as Stachybotrys (a slimy black mold) and other species are now coming to light as people are filing homeowner’s insurance claims and seeking medical treatment for mold invasion of their homes.
Molds thrive in humid atmospheres. Unfortunately, most homes have suffered some type of water damage, whether from a plumbing problem or a leaking roof. Even high humidity can give molds a happy reproductive environment. So once your home dries out, there may still be hidden sources of mold and mold spores trapped under the carpet or pad, in wallboard, wood, or numerous other areas.
Additionally, your pillows and bedding, air conditioner units, upholstery, shower stalls and other areas are ripe areas for mold fungus infestation. And unfortunately, cleaning is not very effective as a primary measure, since mold spores are very resistant organisms. Molds are a serious issue in common illnesses such as allergies, asthma, and chronic sinus infections.
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