Help Homeowners Whose Homes are Making Them Sick

 

The Most Common Ways Your Home Could Be Making You Sick

By Charlotte Meier

Photo via Pixabay by James DeMers

 

No matter how clean you keep your home, there could be spots that are harboring bacteria and mold that you aren’t even aware of. There could also be common household products lying around that are dangerous to your family’s health, especially if one of your loved ones has asthma or other health issues.

 

It’s important to know the risks and to be prepared, so it’s a good idea to go through your home and clean in the unexpected places, such as refrigerator drawers and beneath the bath mats. Here are a few of the most common ways your home could be making you sick and how to take care of them.

 

Your carpet

 

Dust mites, bacteria, and dead skin are just a few of the things that can thrive in carpet. If you or a family member have severe asthma or other lung-related issues, it’s a good idea to have tile or laminate flooring rather than wall-to-wall carpeting. If that’s outside your budget, consider investing in a good vacuum that uses HEPA technology to clean the fibers of your carpet without throwing dust and debris back into the air.

 

The fridge

 

You might wipe down the shelves in the refrigerator once in awhile, but it’s important not to neglect the other areas, such as trays and drawers. Don’t forget the freezer; water pans can collect tons of bacteria and hang around where you keep your food, so give the entire unit a good cleaning with soap and hot water.

 

Change your filters

 

Furnace filters can collect all sorts of dust and dander, and if they aren’t changed often not only do they not work well, they also send that debris right back into the air. Change the filter often and keep spares handy in winter.

 

Check the bathroom

 

The bathroom is one of the most common complaints for homeowners where cleanliness is concerned, and if you have children you may be cleaning that room more often than any others. The cleaners you use can be harsh irritants, however, so choose carefully. In some cases, plain old vinegar and water is the best choice.

 

It’s also important to turn on the fan when taking a hot shower so steam doesn’t build up and cause mold. Dry yourself well before stepping out of the tub so the bath mat doesn’t get soaked, as mold can build up on the underside of the mat as well. Hang it up to air dry after each use and wash often.

 

Another thing to remember is the faucets. Your showerhead, in particular, can carry loads of bacteria that could lead to lung infections and fatigue, among other things. Clean it once a week, along with the sink faucet.

 

Skip the smell-good stuff

 

Dryer sheets, air fresheners, and certain cleaners can contain harsh irritants that can cause watery, itchy eyes, itchy skin, or coughs and sinus issues. Consider using natural air fresheners, such as boiling orange peels, and skip the harsh cleansers no matter how good they smell.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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