There is overwhelming scientific evidence that indicates that indoor air can be more seriously polluted than the air in the largest and most industrialized cities. When you consider the fact that people spend up to 90 percent of their time indoors, it becomes clear why indoor air pollution is becoming one of the greatest health threats of our times.
Carpets can emit a variety of different volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can greatly increase the level of polluted air inside your home. To limit indoor air pollution from new carpets, ask for low-VOC, formaldehyde-free adhesives and air out carpeting before installation. Also be sure to keep windows open and run the fans for two or three days to help ventilate residual VOC emissions outdoors.
Heating equipment, especially gas-powered ones, can produce carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide. These toxic gases can cause headaches, dizziness, fatigue, respiratory problems, sinus inflammation, and in some cases even death if not ventilated properly. Make sure all heating equipment in your home is well maintained and properly ventilated.
Although some paints emit fewer chemical fumes than others, all paints emit VOCs as they dry which can cause headaches, nausea, or dizziness. When painting inside your home, use low-VOC paint and open windows or doors to ventilate pollution outdoors. Paint strippers and adhesive removers can be even more toxic, so take extra caution when using these and similar products indoors.
In addition to controlling the sources of pollution inside your home, schedule regular air duct cleanings to remove dirt, dander, mold, and other contaminants that can affect your health and the health of your family.