Why Test for Indoor Air Quality?
Many people ask why test for indoor air quality pollutants in your home. There are many studies linking ingredients in the air we breathe to the onset of chronic diseases. We spend ninety percent of our time indoors. Poor Indoor Air Quality has been linked to coughs, headaches, dizziness, Asthma, COPD, allergic reactions, sinus problems, depression, loss of energy, skin eruptions, itchy eyes, and many other diseases including cardiovascular disease and cancer. Studies relating to concerns about Indoor Air Quality can be found here.
If what we breathe matters, why isn’t there more focus on Indoor Air Quality?
- Drug Companies sell Pharmaceuticals
- Allergists treat allergies
- Environmentalists focus on outdoor air
- Pharmacists dispense drugs
- Pulmonologists repair the lungs
- Emergency room doctors stabilize the patient
- Landlords minimize expenses
- Health Insurance, Medicaid, and Medicare pay for healthcare
- Few focus on measuring and correcting unhealthy Indoor Air Quality
A professional’s education and purpose is to provide the services they are educated for, not steer people away from their area of expertise. It is up to consumers to select which service best serves their need, whether it be a doctor, pharmacist, or indoor air quality professional. In many cases, the better alternative for identifying the cause of health symptoms can be an indoor air quality analysis. Much is known in the general population about the ingredients in what we eat, but not so much about the ingredients in what we breathe. Small amounts of what enters our body through the lungs can have just as many consequences as small amounts of ingredients that enter our body through the stomach. In addition to the lack of knowledge about what we breathe, there is a lack of knowledge about how changes in construction practices have adversely affected the ingredients in the indoor air we breathe.
Indoor Air Quality and Disease
It was once thought that poor Indoor Air Quality only exacerbated breathing-related diseases. It is now known that poor Indoor Air Quality plays a role in the onset of many of these diseases. Why test? To provide evidence-based information that helps you make informed decisions about your indoor air quality in order to provide a healthier environment for you and your family.
What’s Changed Over The Years?
Asthma, COPD and other breathing related chronic diseases have increased, yet outdoor air is cleaner now than any time since World War II. Indoor air is often 2 to 5 times as polluted with chemicals as outdoor air, averages 2 ½ times as much particulate, and is isolated from the cleaner outside air due to changed construction practices. In one study, twenty-five percent of the indoor mold spore samples taken from thousands of locations over a five year period contained more than four times the median spore count and several times the recommended levels published by multiple countries.
What’s changed since World War II?
We exchanged low mold growth plaster and hardwood floors for high mold growth carpets and drywall. We added coatings to block bacteria-killing UV rays to double pane windows with weather stripping to prevent air filtration. We wrapped the envelope of the home with Tyvek and calked any seams to prevent air and moisture from leaking in or out.