Let's clear the air
While many people assume pollution is just an outdoor problem, your home and office can also be polluted. “As a society, we make sure that our houses are well-insulated, but we don’t think enough about exposure to all the things we place in our homes,” says Susan Olesik, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Ohio State University. The air quality in and around buildings and structures has a big effect on your health, and while you can feel the symptoms – shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea – right away, other health effects can come on years after exposure, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Clear out old cigarette smoke
Pulmonologist Dr Sumita Khatri notes that one of the most common indoor air pollutants is cigarette smoke, though newer e-cigarettes are another source. The vapour emitted when someone smokes e-cigarettes releases chemicals linked to lung disease. That rule also applies to previous occupants of your home who may have smoked. “We have all heard of secondhand smoke, this is called thirdhand smoke,” she says. If you have a room that has been exposed to residual smoke, make sure to change the fabric or carpet, which can be a risk to children or people with chronic heart and lung problems.
Water indoor plants sparingly
Overwatering can contribute to the growth of mould, and any water that leaks on to the floor invites mould growth as well, says Olesik. Put pebbles on top of the soil to discourage mould spores from getting into and polluting the air, walls and floor. If the mouldy areas in your house are less than about three square metres, you can handle the job yourself.