Collier and Lee Counties Edition
Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print Feed Feed

Breathe Easy

Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality

Syda Productions/Shutterstock.com

For much of the country, winter means spending more time indoors—and exposed to potential toxins. Indoor air quality is critically important to children, the elderly and people with respiratory problems that may be especially sensitive to pollutants, according to WebMD.com. Recognizing and avoiding some of the most common sources of toxins in the home can safeguard everyone’s health year-round and notably now, at the height of the season when humans tend to hibernate in their warm abodes.

• The Environmental Working Group warns about volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can be found in many household products from new carpets and furniture to paints and air fresheners. These airborne toxins can irritate eyes and respiratory systems, and increase the risk of cancer and liver, kidney and central nervous system damage. Look for low- and zero-VOC products; buy solid wood, hardwood or exterior-grade plywood and antique furniture. Open the windows once in a while as a natural, refreshing way to ventilate.

• How, when and how often we vacuum is also important. The Indoor Air Quality Association recommends a slow and steady motion “to keep dust from flying up into the air.” They also suggest pet owners should vacuum every two days. When choosing a vacuum cleaner, go with a model that includes a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter to pick up microscopic particles a regular vacuum cannot remove.

• The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends using and properly maintaining home ventilation systems, including exhaust fans, air conditioning and heating units; preventing mold by controlling moisture and humidity, including checking pipes and window sills for condensation; and keeping the home smoke-free, because burning cigarettes release at least 69 chemicals that can cause cancer.

• Place a large floor mat just inside each outside door, suggests WebMD.com, as people track in many chemicals—especially from pesticides and other pollutants—via the dirt on their shoes, which also can be removed before entering.


This article appears in the January 2019 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

A Spirit Festival at Unity Church of Naples

A Spirit Festival, a curated gathering of many of the area’s best psychics, healers and speakers presented by Goddess I AM and Unity Church of Naples, will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., April 6.

Life Transforming Workshops at Goddess I AM

Richawn Cranor, an empowerment and communication specialist, motivational speaker and success coach, will lead a seven-week Life Transforming Workshop series from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Mondays beginning April 15 at Goddess I AM Healing & Arts Center, in Naples

Purely You Spa Offers Special Anti-Aging Facial Process

Purely You Spa, a certified organic spa in Naples, is now offering a special advanced anti-aging skin resurfacing facial experience.

Revive Psychology Begins Holistic Mental Health Counseling

Beginning this month, Revive Psychology, owned by chief counselor Carol Roldan, is providing in-office holistic mental health counseling in both Naples and Fort Myers, along with telephone and online service.

Free Information About Cannabis Oil in Fort Myers

Laura Cavanagh will give two free presentations, provide tastings and answer questions on cannabibiol (CBD)/cannabigerol (CBG) oil and how it can help improve the brain and body on April 18 and 23.

Add your comment: