You’ve covered the electrical outlets, installed the baby gates and placed bumpers on sharp furniture edges, among other steps to ensure your home is safe for your newborn. That’s great! However, the biggest threat to your baby’s health is the one you can’t see: Poor indoor air quality.
It affects people of all ages. However, babies are particularly susceptible. Their developing immune systems make them vulnerable respiratory problems caused by dust mites, pet dander, mold and other airborne pollutants. Symptoms include nose, throat and skin irritation to severe long-term ailments such as allergies and asthma.
Follow these steps to ensure healthier air for you and your baby.
Change Your Air Filter
One of the easiest ways to improve indoor air quality is to be diligent about replacing your HVAC unit’s air filter. The filter traps dust and pollen that would otherwise circulate through your house. However, when they become clogged, their performance drops drastically. We recommend changing it out every 90 days, or every 60 days if you have pets. Speaking of which...
Curb Pet Dander
We love our furry friends, but they don’t do our air quality any favors. You can easily reduce the amount of dander that circulates through your home by brushing your pets at least once a week. And don’t skimp on the vacuuming. Which brings us to …
Use a HEPA Filter Vacuum
Unless your vacuum has a HEPA filter, you’re creating a minor dust storm every time you use it. The average household vacuum releases particles smaller than 50 microns. That means much of what you’re Hoovering up is being released back into the air. Not good.
HEPA stands for High Efficiency Particulate Air. Vacuums with HEPA filter capture nearly 100% of particles down to 0.3 microns. Just be sure to replace the bag regularly.
Your little one is going to spend a lot of time cruising the carpet. Be sure it’s clean. While we’re on the subject....
Be Cautious with Carpet
Carpets can harbor dust mites, mold spores, dirt, dust and allergens which can become airborne when disturbed. Plus, some carpets emit volatile organic compounds from glue and chemicals, which can be harmful to your health. That’s why the American Lung Association recommends hard-surface floors. But if you insist on carpet, look for flooring with the Green Label. Green Label carpets are certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute to ensure that you’re buying the very lowest emitting products available.
Add Potted Plants
Certain house plants can actually reduce the amount of particulates in the air. Because plants take in carbon, they also absorb toxins such as formaldehyde, benzene and ammonia. Not only that, microbes in the potting soil boast cleaning properties. Air-cleaning plants include the garden mum, bamboo palm, spider plant, dracaena and peace lilies. (As an added bonus, studies have shown that plants help reduce mental fatigue, which you will definitely contend with as a new parent.)
Bring in the Pros
Our experienced HVAC technicians can assess the air quality in your home and recommend solutions such as a whole-house air cleaner. This system works in conjunction with your HVAC unit to remove germs, certain viruses, odor and particulates such as dust mite feces (gross!) from the air as it circulates.
We might also recommend a deep-clean of your ductwork. Ducts accumulate a lot of dust and debris, which is a major contributor to poor indoor air quality. To remove this build-up, our professionals use specialized tools to clean out the supply and return-side ducts throughout your home.
These are just several of the services we offer to improve your air quality. After an assessment, we can explore other customized solutions such as a humidifier and duct sealing.
We’re committed to providing the healthiest environment possible for you and your family. To schedule an appointment, call (336) 814-2613.