The Impact of Wildfire Smoke on Indoor Air Quality
Just when your need for clean air has peaked (amid a global pandemic), let us now consider wildfires in the Western part of our country. If you live in an affected area, not only are you likely being told to limit your time outdoors, but you also should take careful steps to protect the quality of air that you’re breathing inside. Your indoor air may not show visible signs of pollution; however, it does not take long for fumes, smoke, and other airborne debris to enter through your doors, windows, roofing vents, and fireplaces.
Learn more about the health effects of wildfires, how to tell if your indoor air is unhealthy, and how to deal with wildfire smoke.
The health effects of wildfire smoke
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, “Smoke is made up of a complex mixture of gases and fine particles produced when wood and other organic materials burn.” Of greatest concern to your health are these fine particles mentioned, which can enter your lungs through your nose and mouth and also irritate your nose and eyes. Prolonged exposure to wildfire smoke can lead to asthma, bronchitis, irritated sinuses, eyes, throat, and nose.
If you suffer from chronic diseases such as heart or lung disease – these conditions can also be aggravated by exposure to wildfire smoke and even lead to premature death in some cases. Generally, older individuals and those battling other health conditions that affect their breathing are at the most significant risk for complications related to wildfire smoke.
Common health effects to watch out for include:
- Running or bleeding nose
- Eye irritation and blurred vision
- Scratchy throat and raspy speaking voice
- Dry cough
- Chest pains and trouble breathing
How can I tell if my air is unhealthy?
Sometimes it may be challenging to detect unhealthy indoor air. You can always purchase an air meter to detect your indoor air quality levels. If you live in an area frequently affected by wildfires, it may be a wise investment to purchase an air quality meter. However, without a meter, you can look for visual and physical clues.
These clues include fog or color to the air. The odor of smoke or pollutants of any kind is also a tell-tale sign. Are your white or light-colored home furnishings becoming slowly discolored over time? Are you noticing an increase in the dust on your floors, countertops, and hard surfaces? Are you or those in your household experiencing any of the health issues detailed above, including difficulty breathing, coughing, or frequent irritation to their throats and eyes? These are all signs that your indoor air quality may be lacking.
Also read: “Do Air Conditioners Filter Wildfire Smoke?”
How to deal with smoke from wildfires
It can be overwhelming to deal with smoke from nearby wildfires. Even when fires are “far” away and not immediately threatening to your property, these wildfires can risk damage to your health – far more important than property. An important first step in protecting yourself from the damaging effects of smoke is to increase the filtration capacity of your existing equipment, including HVAC units. Additionally, inspect your home during better weather conditions and seal your home from cracks and gaps where smoke may easily enter the home.
To help preserve your health and safety, we recommend adding portable filtration units to your disaster supply kit. Make sure you’re ready when nature takes hold of your environment, and you’re at risk for air pollution. The EnviroKlenz Air System utilizes a patented earth mineral technology that captures and neutralizes odors and VOCs from the air without releasing any byproducts.
The EnviroKlenz Air System also has a hospital-grade HEPA filter that captures 99.99% of particles as small as 0.3-microns from the air, guaranteeing the air in your home stays as clean as possible by recirculating your air rather than just blowing the airborne debris back out into another area. Our units are portable, simple to maintain, and easy to use and move around your home as needed. With an EnviroKlenz Air System, you can rest assured that you’re doing all that you can to protect your family’s health during wildfire season.
Mobile Air System
✓ Patented earth mineral technology works to attack VOCs and break them down on a compound level
✓ No chemicals or masking agents
✓ Will not release any chemicals back into your environment
✓ Safer and faster at removing VOC’s than traditional carbon filters and PECO air purifiers
EnviroKlenz® Medical Disclaimer:
“Any information that is provided on this website is not for the use by any commercial or personal entity without expressed written consent of the blog author. The material and statements illustrated within this blog are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases or medical conditions. Nor does the author in any way guarantee or validate the validity, totality, or efficacy of any claims and will therefore not be held responsible for the content of any claims. Always consult your medical physician for any specific medical advice or recommendations.”