With the winter months fast approaching, CNN reports that the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) model predicts that death tolls by COVID-19 will double in the coming four months. Hundreds of thousands of Americans already died, and almost 6.4 million were infected, according to John Hopkins University.
The cold weather only encourages the Coronavirus to spread. The difference in temperature and humidity levels allows viruses to travel much faster and stay much longer in the air. Experts noted the similarity of pattern of the Coronavirus with influenza viruses.
As Americans start moving their activities indoors, the risk of transmission increases, considering that most houses, buildings, and establishments have poor indoor air quality. People are also more prone to catching the virus with the sedentary lifestyle brought by the cold.
Along with following social distancing regulations, wearing protective masks when heading out, and practicing a healthy lifestyle, maintaining good indoor air quality is a great way to help your family stay safe while experts are still on the hunt for the vaccine.
Eco-Friendly Tips in Maintaining Good Air Quality at Home
The most inexpensive and quickest way to improve indoor air quality is to keep the airflow inside your house fresh. It may seem counterintuitive opening your windows during the cold season since you are allowing heat to escape, however doing so is crucial to let more oxygen in and reduce humidity.
Ditch Carpets and Decorative Rugs
Opting for a carpetless floor is another great idea to maintain good air quality inside your house. Carpets are prone to collecting dirt and dust and are difficult to clean. They also produce toxins and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which are harmful to our families.
Opt for concrete or hardwood floors instead. They are low-maintenance and they cost much cheaper.
Regularly Clean Your Home
Regularly giving your house cleaning would make a difference in your indoor air quality. Aside from the floor, walls and upholstered furniture should also be regularly vacuumed. Sheets and linens should be changed once a week to prevent allergens and dust mites from forming.
Hire an expert and have your air duct and dryer vent cleaned. Regular cleaning of your ventilation system helps in keeping good air quality at home.
Furthermore, trying to pull a DIY in cleaning your ventilation system can be dangerous. If improperly done, coolants might leak in the air degrading the quality of air inside your house.
Spruce up with Indoor Plants
Growing plants indoors is a natural way to purify the air inside your house. Houseplants can filter harmful VOCs, formaldehyde, and ammonia, common on household furniture and cleaning products.
Plants release oxygen ensuring that everyone in your household is inhaling fresh air. Other than that, greeneries are proven to be effective in alleviating one’s mood and emotion. Some best air purifying plants are English ivy, Boston fern, aloe vera, and peace lily.
Invest in Home Air Purifiers
Though it can be expensive, investing in a high-quality air purifier is all worth it. Top-quality air purifying machines effectively removes air pollutants by almost a hundred percent while releasing a much cleaner and fresher air.
Some air purifiers even release negative ions into the air, knocking off airborne disease-causing viruses and bacteria.
Give up Smoking
Tobacco smoke is one of the major causes of indoor air pollution. Though smoking and vaping are illegal in public places, no such regulation applies to privately-owned properties. Thus, the best way to prevent compromising indoor air quality is to stop smoking.
The level of toxins brought by tobacco smoke can stay airborne up to five hours, making your family more vulnerable to the harmful effects of secondhand smoke.
Ditch Air Fresheners
If you think air fresheners help clean the air, think again. Scented air fresheners are also major contributors in compromising indoor air quality. Synthetic air fresheners are composed of toxic chemicals that cause several health complications if frequently inhaled.
Instead of spraying synthetic air fresheners to remove bad odor, opt for natural ones. Baking soda mixed with lemon juice or white vinegar is the best example.
Invest in Salt Crystal Lamps
Himalayan Pink Salt lamps are also proven to be effective in cleansing the air around you. The salt crystal can purify air toxins and reduce airborne pathogens and irritants by decreasing humidity in the air, whether it is powered on or not.
Aside from minimizing the risk of contracting Coronavirus disease, maintaining a quality indoor air comes with several benefits. It helps prevent cardiovascular and serious respiratory problems, promotes better sleep, and helps reduce energy consumption.
So before the winter months kick in, consider applying the above-mentioned tips.