5 Simple Fixes for a Healthier Home Environment
Your home should be a comfortable oasis that you and your family can retreat to after a long day. Making sure that your home environment is healthy and safe for you and your family is a big part of creating a comfortable home. Use the tips below to help you create a healthier home environment:
Cut out toxic chemical-based cleaners.
This is an easy fix that you can start implementing the next time you shop for cleaning products. Avoid purchasing harsh, chemical-based cleaners. Instead, choose gentle cleaners in place of those that contain harmful ingredients. For information on what cleaners to avoid, check out the Environmental Working Group’s Cleaners Hall of Shame.
If you feel so inclined, many non-toxic cleaners are easy to make at home. Try a mix of lemon juice, vinegar, and water for cleaning glass and other hard surfaces. Baking soda works well to scrub difficult areas, such as toilet bowls and sinks, and makes for a quick carpet refresher when sprinkled lightly over carpets before vacuuming. Other great ideas for cleaning with baking soda can be found here.
Fluctuate your home’s temperature.
Understandably, many people assume that keeping your home at a constant temperature at all times is the best practice for a healthy home environment. In fact, the opposite is true. Indoor spaces, such as homes and offices, that are maintained at a steady temperature can actually disrupt our body’s homeostasis. That’s because our own internal temperature is continuously fluctuating throughout the day, oftentimes in reaction to the changing external environment.
By maintaining an unvarying indoor temperature, we can actually trigger a sense of malaise. Instead, go ahead and indulge in that thermostat war with your significant other or housemate. After all, it’s good for you! If you live alone, be sure to switch up the temperature a few degrees every now and again and reap the benefits of this healthy home tip.
Prevent mold in your home.
Mold can cause serious problems within your home. To prevent mold from emerging, quickly deal with spills and fix any leaks from interior plumbing or the outdoor elements as soon as you notice them. If you suspect that you’ve been dealing with a leak for a long period of time, call in a professional to inspect your home for mold. If mold is found, deal with it immediately.
Prevent future mold buildup by keeping all areas in your home, particularly basements and cellars, free from excess moisture. Depending on the moisture level in your environment, you may need to invest in a dehumidifier.
Ventilation is important.
Many people don’t consider the importance of proper home ventilation, but having adequate ventilation in your home can seriously improve air quality. Just as we mentioned above, since it’s an enclosed environment, it’s easy for air pollutants to build-up within the home. Proper ventilation can help by moving the air through the home to rid your home of pollutants and bring in fresh air.
Most indoor air is more polluted than outdoor air, sometimes up to 10 times more polluted! So, let a little fresh air in every day and breathe easier. For 15 minutes each day, turn off your HVAC system, and slightly open all the windows in your home to let a little fresh air in and any stuffy air out.
Don’t forget HVAC maintenance.
Having your HVAC system checked out regularly by professionals can help you improve the efficiency and increase the longevity of your heating and cooling units, no matter what type of system you own. A trained HVAC technician will help you get to know your HVAC system, alert you to any issues with the unit, and repair any problems as the appear, as well as give you advice on how to keep your system running smooth all year long.