Have you ever thought of your home as being healthy or unhealthy? While the principle of a healthy home may be new to some of us, it is progressively getting popularity with house owners. A healthy home can include a variety of elements from building products used to build your home to using non-toxic cleaning products. Below is a list of five ways to help you in creating a healthy home environment.
1. Clean Air and Circulation:
Here are some unfamiliar truths about the air inside many of today’s homes:
Indoor air toxin levels may be 2 to five times higher than the toxin levels outdoors.
Indoor air toxin is among the top environmental issues today.
Australians spend up to 90% of their time inside your home.
Indoor air pollutants such as tobacco smoke, pollen, mold, dust, and animal dander have the ability to create asthmatic and allergic reactions.
Listed below are a couple of ways to improve the quality of your indoor air:
Consider an Indoor Air Cleanser. You can also install exhaust fans in bathrooms to help get rid of moisture and chemicals from your home.
Upgrade the air filters on your furnace with the pleated filters that catch smaller particles. Change the filters routinely as recommended by the manufacturer’s directions.
You can also use indoor houseplants to assist in cleansing your home’s air. For example, Boston Ferns cleanse formaldehyde from the air. According to environmental experts, formaldehyde is a colorless, strong-smelling gas. When present in the air at levels above 0.1 ppm (parts in a million parts of air), it may cause watery eyes, burning sensations in the eyes, nose and throat, nausea, coughing, chest tightness, wheezing, skin rashes, and allergic reactions. Formaldehyde can be found in insulation, particleboard, paper products and many cleaning products.
2.Dust-proof Your Home:
Dust your rooms and knickknacks routinely with a damp cloth.
Dust your hardwood, tile, linoleum, and laminate flooring routinely with a dust mop or a vacuum made for hard flooring.
Vacuum carpets, rugs, and upholstered furniture routinely. Consider purchasing a vacuum with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter. A HEPA filter can getting rid of a minimum of 99.97% of all particles that are 0.3 microns or bigger. In addition, consider using a bag-less vacuum to avoid the exposure of dust when you change a bag.
Enclose pillows, mattresses, and box springs in an airtight, dust-proof cover.
Dust/clean ceiling fans routinely to make sure they are not releasing dust in the air each time you run them.
Change dust-collecting blinds and long drapes with window shades or washable curtains.
3. Use Natural and Non-Toxic Cleaning Products:
One way to guarantee that the fragrances in your house are clean and fresh is to avoid using harsh cleaning products, which can create fumes that may stick around for days. Try using natural components such as baking soda, vinegar, club soda, and lemon juice.
For example, to make a natural glass cleaner, mix:
2 teaspoons white vinegarone quart of warm water
Mix ingredients together and pour into spray bottle. Spray on surface and wipe dry.
4. Fill Your Home with Natural and Earth-Friendly Products. Below is a small list of environmentally friendly products available on the marketplace today:
Organic cotton towels, linens, clothes
Mattresses bediing, pillows
Cork flooring, wool carpet
Couches, chairs, ottomans
Toys and games for any age
Soap and laundry cleaning agents
Organic candles, home décor accessories
5. Use Safe, Non-Toxic Interior Paints that have really low VOC (volatile organic compounds) contentno formaldehydelow odor
Try using any of the above ideas to create a healthy home environment. Although the idea of a healthy home is fairly new to many, there are numerous resources readily available consisting of books, articles, and websites, where you can find additional info.
Perchloroethylene, much better referred to as perc, is used by 80 percent of dry cleaners in Australia as a solvent to clean clothing that are “dry clean only.” In spite of its effectiveness, using this chemical has been connected to a range of health adverse effects and has recently come under heavy public scrutiny. With heavy regulation from relevant agencies, professional dry cleaners are looking for the use of a safer chemical– liquid co2– to provide a green laundry alternative. At-home dry cleaning kits such as are offering the option of budget friendly & environmentally safe dry cleaning, that lowers the energy-burning, waste producing processes that the professionals use.
The first step to green dry cleaning is replacing hazardous chemicals with natural cleaning products. Perchloroethylene (perc) is a synthetic chemical that is made from a reaction between ethylene and chlorine. Like many syntheitic chemicals, it positions a risk to our health. Perc is a main nervous system depressant. Direct exposure to it can take place in the workplace or in the environment when it is released into air, water, land, or groundwater. It can also take place when people use products consisting of perc, spend time in dry cleaning facilities that use perc, live above or adjacent to these dry cleaning facilities, or bring dry cleaned garments into their home before they are appropriately aired out. Short-term contact can cause lightheadedness, headaches, nausea, and irritation of the skin, eyes, nose, and throat, while long term exposure presents greater threats, including liver and kidney damage and cancer.
Liquid carbon dioxide
Liquid carbon dioxide (CO2) appears to be the most practical green dry cleaning solvent to replace perchloroethylene. It is cheap, plentiful, naturally occurring and can even be recycled from the industrial wastes from the manufacture of chemicals such as ammonia. Most importantly, exposure to co2 has no health adverse effects. The only disadvantages for dry cleaning with CO2 are that it does not clean as well as perc does and the machinery required to use it is really costly, therefore a higher price is passed on to the customer.
A virtue of environmentalism is moderation. That being said, green dry cleanind is best accomplished if you do not dry clean at all or limit the use ofprofessional dry cleaning by utilizing at-home dry cleaning kits for garments with smaller spots and stains or that need to be freshened. Professional dry cleaning is a large process that utilizes a lot of energy and produces a lot of waste in the form of powder residue, sludge and wastewater. If the dry cleaner is still using perc (it is still allowed in many states), these substances are hazardous. At-home dry cleaning includes no more than a cleaning cloth and your clothes dryer. There are no hazardous chemicals involved and no waste.
While perc remains the most effective dry cleaning solvent, using natural cleaning products and at-home dry cleaning can only be beneficial to our health and our environment.
Nobody would argue that there’s a growing consciousness about the impact that we, as people, have on the environment. While much of the media’s focus has been on greenhouse gas emissions and the ways we can minimize our carbon footprint, less attention has been paid to the impact that standard cleaning products and techniques have on our health and on the environment. Although chlorofluorocarbons have long been recognized as contributing to the depletion of the earth’s ozone layer, and have been largely removed from customer products, conventional cleaning products continue to have a destructive impact on the environment. To that end, there has been a wave of “green cleaning” products getting in the marketplace.
Conventional Cleaning Products
Many conventional cleaning products contain a variety of potentially hazardous chemicals, in part since they are largely uncontrolled and in part since there are couple of labeling requirements. For example, many cleaning products contain phosphates (which are also a primary element of many fertilizers), which can pollute water and rob lakes and rivers of oxygen. Similarly, many cleaning products with dyes and scents contain phthalates, and most integrate other organic compounds into their formulas. Together, these chemicals can have adverse effects on the neurological functions, respiration, and reproductive organs of people and wildlife. Our use of several different cleaning agents at the same time (a window cleaner, a basin cleanser, and a toilet bowl cleaner, for instance) can intensify the products’ effects on our health.
Green Cleaning Products
In reaction to the growing concern about the chemicals in cleaning products and their adverse effects on our health and on the health of our world, green cleaning products are being touted. Some companies that make green products prohibit certain chemicals, and others make it a point to totally disclose all ingredients on labels. What they don’t tell you, though, is that it’s absolutely possible to have a clean home without using any cleaning products at all. Cleaning without products may take a bit more elbow grease, but water alone will do the trick.
Why Water and a Cloth Works Just as Well
For the environmentally conscious, among the best cleaning tools is a cloth – some would say the ultimate cloth – that utilizes mirafiber to produce a streak free, spot free, lint free, and dust free finish. Utilizing this type of cloth means that you don’t have to use paper towels, which contribute to the waste that adversely impacts the environment. Furthermore, this ultimate cloth is typically guaranteedto last five years, making it decidedly environmentally friendly. Since it’s washable and bleachable, it can be used over and over again on practically any surface, from windows and glass to stainless steel and Corian. Basically, you just damp it, wring it, clean your surface, and walk away. This ultimate cloth saves time, saves money, and, most importantly, helps save the earth.