Is Your Home a Hotbed for Illness?

Home bedroom with bed and nightstand

Springtime can silently fill your home with some of the most hazardous airborne pollutants.

While it’s no secret that polluted indoor air is unhealthy to breathe, what causes this environment isn’t exactly clear all of the time. Some of the components that create poor indoor air quality are omnipresent dangers, while others are seasonal.

Despite year-round hazards, spring is an especially difficult stretch of the year maintaining healthy breathing conditions in your home. Aside from the incredible amount of pollen that comes with spring, Refinery29 has tapped the expertise of Dr. David Stukus to compile a short but important list of other airborne pollutants that could be making your home a breeding ground for germs, bacteria, and, thus, a hotbed for illness.

As we have shared before, dust mites are an exceptionally prevalent respiratory danger in the home.

Although there are many types of dust mites, Dr. Stukus says they all do pretty much the same thing: hide in stuff, especially places that are warm and humid. That includes mattresses, pillows, and even your precious stuffed animals. The best thing to do is wash your bedding (teddy bears included) using hot water every few weeks. You might also invest in mattress and pillow covers that can help reduce the spread of the mites.

Mold spores are another airborne pollutant that can do a great deal of damage to our health, though they are less prominent in the conversation about indoor air pollution.
“Mold loves moisture,” Dr. Stukus says. Mold is most often the result of a water leakage, so it’s mostly going to be seen in places like your bathroom and kitchen. “But anywhere with poor ventilation is where mold can be found,” Dr. Stukus warns. So finding and fixing the source of that dampness is key, especially if the area isn’t well-ventilated.
pets can produce indoor allergies
Pet owners may be well-acquainted with some of the remedies of dander (antihistamines, for example), but Dr. Stukus recommends keeping pets out of the bedroom as a simple (though underused) strategy to maintain clean and healthy breathing conditions for you and guests.
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