Indoor Air Pollution: How to Protect Your Baby
Outdoor air pollution continues to be a cause for worldwide concern, but many people are unaware that poor indoor air quality can also affect one’s health and well-being.
According to the World Health Organization, indoor air pollution is associated with the majority of health conditions all over the world. Conditions include stroke, heart disease and lung cancer. Moreover, exposure to indoor air pollutants increases the risks for childhood pneumonia. Parents should take active measures to improve the air quality in their home. Especially if there are babies or children in the house.
Aside from regular cleaning and organization, there are many ways that you can have cleaner, fresher air inside your home. The good news? It doesn’t have to cost a lot to make it happen!
Get rid of mold to keep indoor air safe.
The best way to deal with mold it to prevent it before it ever starts growing. Not only is it unsightly, but having a mold-infested house can cause a host of health symptoms. Black mold should be taken very seriously as it’s a harmful indoor air pollutant. Eliminate and prevent black mold from spreading by having it professionally removed.
If you live near a large body of water, then it’s likely that humidity levels are high in your area. Make sure that you frequently check your home, as humidity can encourage mold growth. Using a dehumidifier in humid months is a good idea to prevent mold and indoor air pollution. This is an especially good idea in a baby or child’s room.
What are the symptoms of black mold exposure in children?
If you notice that your child is constantly sneezing or has allergy-like symptoms, then it’s possible that your home has black mold. Although the following symptoms are common in a slew of other health conditions, some common symptoms of black mold exposure in children include:
- Red, watery eyes
- Dry cough
- Skin rashes including eczema
- Itchy nose
- Nasal congestion
- Sore throat
- Flu-like symptoms
If you believe your child has been exposed to black mold, be sure to consult with a health care provider.
Keep the air flowing.
Proper ventilation can improve the air quality in your home. It can also removes excess moisture, which can lead to mold growth. To ventilate your house, you can install small exhaust fans in areas that have high moisture levels, such as the bathroom or basement.
Meanwhile, having ceiling fans in high traffic areas like the dining and living room ensures proper air circulation. You can also open the windows and doors every once in a while to let some fresh air in. Just make sure to keep babies away from open windows whenever you’re airing out a room.
Control the dust levels in your home.
If you live near a main road, farmland or a construction site, it’s likely that you’re already dealing with a dust problem. We recommend using a HEPA filter in your heating/cooling unit to help remove dust particles from the air. Cleaning frequently using a vacuum cleaner (with a HEPA filter) to remove excess dust is also a good idea to prevent indoor air pollution.
Pet owners should groom and clean their furry friends as often as needed. Pet hair can collect mold spores, pollen and other outdoor pollutants that can cause your baby to develop cold-like symptoms.
Add some greenery to your living space to help with indoor air pollution.
Having a few (or several) plants in your home can help to clean your indoor air. Gerbera daisies, spider plants, aloe vera and rubber plants (among others) are particularly effective for getting rid of toxins in the air. If your baby is starting to crawl, make sure that any plant is out of his or her reach. Don’t keep any poisonous plants inside your house. Foxglove, azaleas and peace lilies are some plants that contain toxins, and when ingested. They may cause vomiting, stomach cramps and rashes, so make sure not to have these in your home—even if they do clean the air.
Improving the air quality in your home and doing your best to eliminate indoor air pollution can do much to ensure your baby’s overall health. Try these tips to clean the air in your home for your entire family’s well-being!
What efforts do you make to keep indoor air quality at its highest? Tell us in the comments below.
Karoline is a former nutritionist, but left a corporate environment for a more free and flexible lifestyle of freelance writing. She now uses her knowledge to create informative articles like this one!