Breathing tends to be something we just do—it’s not something we actually think about. This means that we often don’t even consider that we could be breathing harmful materials. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), symptoms from exposure to air pollutants can be experienced immediately or years later. Symptoms of exposure can include a sore throat, congestion, eye irritation, headache, dizziness, or fatigue.
The EPA notes that since these symptoms are also symptoms of a mild cold or mild bout of allergies, they can often go overlooked. So, it’s always a good idea to make sure you’re doing all you can do to keep the air in your home of good quality. Check out the best ways to ensure quality air at home.
Let’s be honest—no one likes dry air (especially in the winter months when it’s especially dry). But did you know that dry air in your home give you dry eyes and dry nasal passages? These symptoms of dry air can cause nosebleeds and extra mucus production, which could be why your spouse snores. Dry air also makes you more likely to get sick with viruses such as the cold or flu. Not only does dry air affect your health and give you dry skin (yeah, really), but having the proper humidity level in your home also reduces static electricity, keeps indoor plants healthy, and protects your wood flooring and furniture.
For good air quality in your home, it’s important to have a humidifier that keeps the humidity in your home at healthy levels. Generally, a central humidifier can be attached to your air conditioning and heating system, but there are also portable humidifiers for individual rooms or if you’re on a budget. To combat dry indoor air and to keep indoor humidity at optimal levels, consider contacting Vectra Mechanical to discuss your humidifier options.
Keeping the House Clean
An article from Harvard Health Publishing notes that keeping your home clean can greatly reduce the number of irritants present in your home, such as pet dander, dust, and mold—all of which make symptoms of allergies and asthma worse. Harvard Health Publishing recommends focusing on vacuuming at least once a week with a vacuum that has a HEPA filter, regularly washing bedding and drapes, and avoiding clutter, as this is where dust will accumulate.
Not only is keeping your home clean going to keep your sinuses feeling fresh and unbothered by allergies, but it will also make having close friends over that much less of a hassle. For example, if you’ve recently been asked to be a Godparent, and you’re planning on hosting a baptism party (or the baptism is going to take place in your home), having the house already clean is going to make it that much easier. Due to the global coronavirus pandemic, even the sacrament of baptism has become something that we’re doing at home. So, knowing how to plan an at-home baptism is going to be crucial. Considering the pandemic, limit the guest list to only the closest family members, or if you’re Catholic and doing a christening, only the parents and Godparents of the baby.
Make sure to have lots of hand sanitizers, masks for everyone, and a plan for social distancing. The church that the one being baptized will attend should be contacted well before to go over all the necessary steps, equipment, and paperwork to make it official and respectful. An at-home baptism is probably not what you always had in mind, but it can still be a special occasion. Since God is everywhere, you can be baptized in the name of the father, the name of the son (Jesus Christ), and the name of the Holy Spirit anywhere your church agrees.
Bonus tip: Consider making pre-wrapped snacks to take home as party favors instead of serving food.
An Air Purifier
According to Dr. Stacy Sampson, who interviewed for an article in HealthLine, air filters can reduce symptoms of respiratory issues like asthma or COPD. The EPA notes that while “air cleaners” won’t completely rid the air in your home of pollutants and allergens; they can only reduce them and make the air cleaner to breathe (especially if it has a HEPA filter and is spotless/maintained). While an air purifier isn’t a solution to pollutants, it can still reduce symptoms caused by them.
Bonus tip: Having the filters on your furnace, AC, chimney’s, etc. changed every month or so can reduce the chance of further pollutants in your home, says the EPA.
While there are varying reports on the actual effectiveness of using houseplants to promote healthy air quality, there is no denying that houseplants can have a positive effect on the home, especially if you enjoy them. An article published in Inverse last year noted that, when it comes to eliminating volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the air, houseplants DO remove them, just “not very much.”
“Not very much” is still more than nothing. Considering that they do remove some harmful compounds and have other noted health benefits like improved moods and increased mental wellness, as well as improving room décor, why not get a houseplant?