Not Feeling Well? Your Home Could Be Making You Ill

Scratchy throat? Runny nose? Cough, chills, slight fever?

Sure, this time of year you could be battling allergies, or one of your little ones could bring home some sort of germ from their classroom.  Don’t be surprised though to learn that your house itself is very well what may be making you feel sick. There are molds, bacteria, and toxins all around us, and, especially if you have an older home, these causes of your cough could be concentrated in certain areas of your residence.

Let’s look at a two specific ways in which your ‘Home Sweet Home’ may not be so sweet to your health and wellness…and what you can do to rectify the situation.

Various Combustion Gases >> These gases, such as carbon monoxide, can cause flu-like symptoms and even more severe respiratory illnesses.  There are, sadly, hundreds of deaths each year as well from these gases that go un-checked and un-regulated within a home.

The fixes:

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector.
  • Use an exhaust hood if you own a gas stove.
  • Frequently maintain both your chimney and your furnace.

Allergens >> We’ve written before about how mold in your home can cause allergies and cold-like symptoms.  Allergens in your carpets, your ductwork, and even on your pets can cause a variety of respiratory troubles.

The fixes:

  • Locate and fix your leaks and other moisture causing complications. 
  • If you use a humidifier, be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions exactly to not cause too much moisture (or even moisture at the times when you don’t want or need it).
  • They may be loved ones, but realize that your pets may be transporting allergens – keep them clean in order to lower your risk of a borne illness from their fur. 
  • Consider wrapping your furniture (or, at least your pillows and your mattress) in an allergy proof cover.
  • Have your HVAC systems cleaned every couple of years to clean up any mold or bacteria that could be leading to some respiratory issues.
  • Use a vacuum that have a HEPA-filter.