We spend so much time thinking about our food, water intake, and exercise – but how many hours have you spent contemplating the quality of the air in your home? With most of us spending as much as 90% of our time indoors, air quality plays a much bigger piece in the health puzzle than you may have thought.
Curious about the quality of your home’s air? Well, experts say there are some surefire signs that indicate your indoor air quality (IAQ) isn’t up to scratch. We’ve recapped the main ones, so you can take a look at your own home and see for yourself.
Firstly, there’s the physical
You might be surprised to learn that several of the biggest signs of poor IAQ are related to your physical health and wellbeing. If you’ve noticed any of the following, IAQ could be to blame.
1. Coughing, chest congestion or respiratory issues
One of the biggest factors of IAQ is the concentration of particles in your air. If these increase they can go straight to your lungs, leading to chest and respiratory problems.
2. Allergic episodes & watery eyes
If allergy symptoms persist past hay fever season, the weather might not be your problem. Itching, sneezing and irritation can also be signs that your body is reacting to contaminants in your indoor environment. According to Sensitive Choice, to create a healthy home, you need to reduce impact of those triggers, if possible.
Got a lingering headache, and can’t pin down the cause? It could be down to contaminants like pesticides, cleaning products and garbage that’s been left too long – all of which can affect your indoor air quality.
4. Fatigue or dizziness
These symptoms are generally a sign your air has been affected by fumes, carbon monoxide or gaseous air. If you experience either of these, you should address this immediately.
5. Skin dryness or irritation
Poor IAQ can also affect your skin – especially if you’re prone to sensitivity. If your skin shows signs of dryness, rashes, peeling, flaking or redness, your air could be the issue.
Then, there’s the environmental
Aside from affecting health and wellbeing, poor IAQ can also cause annoying, and in some cases, serious issues around the house.
1. Mould Growth
One of the biggest side-effects of poor IAQ is mould! As well as being unsightly, mould can affect your family’s health, so it should not be ignored. Mould doesn’t go away on its own – it spreads. If you notice mould in your home, this could be a sign that there are high level of moisture in your home.
2. Weird smells
If the air in your house starts to smell strange, this could be a sign of poor IAQ. Musty smells can mean mould, and sickly, bitter smells can suggest poor ventilation. It’s simple: if your air smells bad, you don’t want to be breathing it in.
3. Hot or cold spots in your home
If these suddenly appear, it could mean your home is suffering from bad air circulation. This can often be a symptom of a bigger issue with your AC system, so call out your repairman!
4. Excess dust
An increase in dust means an increase in particles and contaminates (and you don’t want these to end up in your lungs). Check out some tips for managing dust around your home from here.
A humid home is another sign of less than optimal IAQ. High humidity leads to moisture, resulting in mould, whereas low humidity can leave you with dry skin. If your house is humid, it could also be a sign that your air conditioner is struggling, and you should book in a service.
Think your indoor air quality could be better? The first step is sorting out the ventilation in your home and the best way to do this is by investing in a good air conditioner, dehumidifier, or hybrid unit like the Daikin US7 split system air conditioner with air purification features.
It’s always best to seek the advice of an expert when it comes to your indoor air quality though – they will run tests, isolate the problem and offer solutions for how you can improve your IAQ.
Did you know that Daikin split systems and air purifiers carry the Sensitive Choice blue butterfly symbol? This is the National Asthma Council seal for its Sensitive Choice Program, used to easily identify asthma and allergy-friendly products. Daikin split systems regulate temperature, providing ideal conditions all year round and premium comfort and support for those affected by allergies and asthma.