During the cold winter months, you’re a lot more likely to spend time indoors. This is just the way it is in Canada. Cold and snowy winters keep many of us from enjoying the outdoors as much as we do in the summertime. Sure, there are the snowboarding, skiing and skating fans out there who just can’t wait for the white stuff to fall. But, for the most part, Canadians view winter as a season to stay inside.
As a result, we do a lot to diminish our indoor air quality. The more we do in our homes, the more likely we are to make messes. Messes, by the way, don’t necessarily mean keeping things untidy. But our increased use of the kitchen and bathrooms, for example, stand to add more moisture to the air. More moisture means more chances for mould to grow. There are, of course, other examples of how indoor air quality can suffer during the winter.
So how can we work to improve it? Here are six ways:
1. Invest in plants. This should be an especially welcome tip for Canadians with green thumbs. Gardening is about to take a back seat to shovelling. So, if you can’t enjoy your plants outside, why not bring them indoors? As Loretta Lanphier points out on ExhibitHealth.com, plants such as Areca, Lady, Dwarf Date, Rubber Plant, Dracaena, English ivy, Peace Lily, Boston fern, Aloe Vera, Snake Plant and Spider Plant all help to clean and purify the air.
2. Pick up after your pets. Not only should you ensure that your pets aren’t tracking dirt, mud, slush and water into your home after you take them out for their winter walks, but it’s important to be mindful of their dander as well. “Make sure to give pets baths on a regular basis to minimize exposure to dander,” insists Marla Esser on HomeNav.com, “Most people don’t realize how difficult the microscopic dead skin cells that make up pet dander are to remove from upholstery and carpet.”
3. Get an air purifier. “Good air purifiers will improve indoor air quality by removing allergens, harmful particles, and odours,” Lanphier informs us, “Purified air is especially important to people suffering from asthma, allergies, or chemical and pollutant sensitivities. Ideally, according to the layout of your home, it is best to have air purifiers in all bedrooms as well as the main living areas. Most effective air purifiers cover up to 600 sq.ft. of living space.”
4. Vacuum twice as often. Many of us vacuum our homes on a weekly basis. But, during the winter, our windows are bound to be closed a lot more often. This disallows fresh air from outside to circulate with the stagnant air inside. As a result, you’re likely to have more dust accumulate in your home. It’s wise, therefore, to vacuum more often. “Properly vacuuming and keeping up with dust can go a long way toward controlling the harmful contaminates you are exposed to,” reminds Esser.
5. Make use of essential oils. According to Lanphier, “essential oils can be used to effectively clean and freshen indoor air”. She notes that they are free from chemical additives and are great at purifying the air in our bathrooms, closets, basements and sick rooms. Her recommended essential oils to put into a spray bottle along with vinegar and purified water include Lemongrass, Lime, Lavender, Sweet Orange, Peppermint, Pine, Rosemary, Sage, Tangerine and Tea Tree.
6. Consult a professional. At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we know the importance of maintaining healthy indoor air quality levels during the harsh Canadian winters. To maximize the health of our clients, our Air Quality Services work to locate any harmful elements in their homes or offices. For more information, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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