How to minimize toxic chemicals inside your home


In the current climate, where we are spending most of our time indoors all day, you are actually spending a lot of time in a rather polluted environment. In fact, there could be increased exposure to toxic chemicals. In particular Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) which are toxic chemicals emitted by many of our everyday consumer products and household items. Studies have shown that excessive exposure to VOCs can cause several health issues, including:

Irritation of eye, nose, throat, and lungs
Headaches
Nausea
Loss of focus and coordination
Coughing
Lack of breath
Pneumonia
Bronchitis


How do you avoid VOCs in your home and minimize air pollution? Here are some tips.




Ditch the Toxic Cleaning Product

Many of your everyday cleaning products contain VOCs that are emitted when sprayed, such as surface cleaners. Thankfully, the “green cleaning” revolution is in full force as a response to not only VOCs but our need to mitigate our impact on the earth too.

Eco-friendly cleaning products are now common and can be found in most supermarkets. Popular brands include Ecover, Wilko, and Greenscents. These products are effective cleaning aids but come with none of the harsh toxic chemicals found in regular cleaners.

Increase Ventilation


VOCs are also emitted by your furniture, including your carpets and wooden items. To help remove VOCs from your home environment, you should try to increase ventilation as best as possible. This means opening the blinds, craking the windows wide open, and allowing the air to circulate through your home.

When cleaning your home, it is especially important to increase ventilation. This may not be an excellent solution for those living in colder regions of the world like here in the UK. If it’s too cold to open all the windows, consider buying a HEPA air purifier to filter the air for you.





Throw Out Air Fresheners We have all become somewhat obsessed with the cleanliness of our home, and this includes air fresheners. Unfortunately, many of the regular air fresheners we put in our house are releasing harmful VOCs into the air. These air fresheners only mask the smells, meaning you are polluting your air for no reason.


Instead, opt for eco-friendly air fresheners or create your own using natural ingredients from your cupboard. Another simple way to remove smells from your home is to simply open windows and increase ventilation for natural air freshening.
Vacuum Frequently
Running around the home with the vacuum once a day will significantly help to remove VOCs from your home. While this may be a chore and time-consuming, it is well worth it for you and your family’s health. Consider buying a HEPA vacuum that is airtight so that you’re not merely recirculating VOCs into your home environment, making the presence of pollutants worse.




Buy Low or No VOC Products and Furniture

You can now buy products and furniture for your home that carry a “Low-VOC” or “No-VOC” label. This can help to significantly lower the concentration of VOC’s in your home.

Things containing the most VOCs include paint, varnish, carpets, and wooden furniture. Next time you decide to redecorate, keep in mind that much of what you buy may consist of harmful VOCs. Try to buy low or no-VOC where possible.


Liz x


*This is a collaborative post


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