How toxic is your home? While most people spend the majority of their time outdoors, indoor air quality may actually be more threatening to your health than outdoor air. Considering the fact that outdoor air is hit with factory pollution, harmful chemicals, and much more, it is truly shocking to know that indoor air quality can be up to five times worse than outdoor air. It is important to begin purifying the air in your home, and you may be surprised to know that to beginning this process does not require an expensive air purifier.
Here are 5 ways to naturally purify your home that you can begin immediately:
1. Use the Right Kind of Paint (Low-VOC)
The type of paint that you use inside your house can affect the overall air quality of your home. Volatile organic compounds, known as VOCs, are actually released by paints for months after application. What exactly are VOCs? These highly toxic chemicals can include formaldehyde, which was recently classified as a carcinogen by the United States government. When using VOC-containing products, the compounds will slowly release into your home, threatening the health of you and your family.
It is important to note that varnishes and waxes may also contain VOCs. Use low-VOC or no-VOC products when it comes to household painting, varnishing, or waxing.
2. Avoid Synthetic Household Cleaners, Art, and Beauty Supplies
Synthetic household products may also be introducing harmful chemical into your home. The chemicals that produce fragrance react with ozone in the air to form formaldehyde and ultrafine particles that can collect in the lungs. This effect is not limited to household cleaner, however. Hair and nail products as well as art and hobby supplies can also increase the level of VOCs in your home. Popular air freshening products have also been found to trigger allergies and asthma.
For a safer room freshener, dip cotton balls in a sweet-smelling extract like vanilla and stash them around the house.
3. Test Your Home for Radon
Radon is a deadly invisible and odorless gas, commonly found in the basements of older homes that have not been properly tested and protected against radon gas.With it being the leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers and the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer period, radon gas is not something you want in your home. Scientists have even estimated that radon causes thousands of deaths annually.
Testing your home for radon is easy, inexpensive, and is vital to ensuring that your home is free of toxins.
Proper ventilation of your home is key to removing unwanted toxins from inside your home. Oftentimes during the winter months it becomes a challenge to routinely open your windows and properly ventilate your home. As a result, toxins can accumulate inside without the possibility of being released. If you live in a climate that allows for proper window ventilation all year long, then you will be able to avoid the issue and keep your windows open for a few hours each day.
Even during the winter season, however, keeping your windows open for just a few minutes per day can make a difference. If possible, place a fan in one window to blow indoor air outside, and another facing inward to blow outside air in. This will allow for optimum circulation of the air, bringing in fresh new air and removing toxic air buildup.