How the AIR in your house could be making you ill: From drying washing to using a gas cooker, 15 million homes are affected by Toxic Home Syndrome

  • Toxic Home Syndrome is where a person's health deteriorates because of the air in their home - increasing the risk of cancer and heart disease  
  • Air inside contains more than 900 potentially harmful chemicals
  • Mould spores, pollen, radon, carbon monoxide and dander are to blame
  • Experts warn people must ensure their homes are properly ventilated


1. Ventilate
Make sure you have effective ventilation throughout your home.
2. Use eco friendly products
Less toxins and pollutants are found in eco-friendly products, making the air fresher and cleaner
3. Roll with it
Opt for roll on deodorant and beauty products rather than aerosol cans
4. Choose wood flooring
Carpets harbour dust, dust mites, pet hair, fungus and other harmful particles
5. Unplug
Switch off your technology when you've finished using them
6. Take your shoes off
Shoes can carry pollen, dirt and soil from outside, spreading it through your home
7. Get it tested
You can make sure your home is radon free by getting a test
8. Watch paint dry
Ensure paint has dried compleletly before using a newly painted room
9 Crack it open
Dry your washing outside, if possible. If not, make sure you open the windows
10. Time for a change
Ensure shower curtains are changed regularly and avoid ones made from vinyl, because the material harbours water and creates mould
The researchers suggest a change in the way homes in Europe are ventilated could reduce the overall burden of disease, by around 38 per cent. 

Mould spores increase a persons susceptibility to asthma and allergies
Homes with poor ventilation can become a breeding ground for a number of different pollutants that increase the burden of disease. Around 81 per cent of people are at risk of suffering a respiratory or dermatological condition because of poor indoor air quality. Fifty-eight per cent of people have experienced mold or condensation in their homes, increasing to 70 per cent among 25 to 34 year olds. Mold spores, released in the atmosphere by damp spots on the walls, window frames and decaying foods are among the most common biological pollutants. The increasing prevalence of dampness in homes has caused a rise in mold levels, which in turn increase people's susceptibility to asthma and allergies. Pollen can also be a pollutant in the home, usually brought inside when windows are left open or people walk through the house with shoes they have worn outside. 
Meanwhile dander are tiny particles, which come from feathers, skin or hair and can also cause allergies. Volatile organic compounds, found in everyday cleaning products, can trigger asthma. They are commonly found in air fresheners, carpet cleaners, polish and oven cleaners. As well as biological pollutants and VOCs, there are a number of different gases, which are common within the home.Radon is a natural radioactive gas, that comes from the soil. It can seep into the home through cracks in solid floors, construction joints, cracks in walls, gaps around pipes and the water supply.

Carbon monoxide is another gas common in the home. It has no odour or colour and can have serious effects on health.It is highly toxic and is thought to cause around 50 accidental deaths a year in England and Wales. Carbon monoxide can enter the home through cooking, heating, from outside, clogged chimneys, wood burning, incense burning, cigarette smoke and burning candles.
Building materials stored in the home, paint for example, can contain chemicals including lead and formaldehyde, which are known to cause breathing difficulties, increased blood pressure and joint pain. 



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