Air quality in indoor environments, such as your home and working environments, is imperative to your overall health. Indoor air pollution, such as those derived from certain strains of mold, dampness, various biological agents and myriad chemicals, can be detrimental to your overall health. It has been estimated by the World Health Organization (WHO) that approximately 1.5 million deaths occur each year due to the combustion of fuels (solid) indoors.
Dampness is also correlated with an increase in incidences of various respiratory issues, such as asthma and chronic coughing. Dampness is a multi-faceted issue due to the fact that it can enhance the susceptibility of mold growth within a property.
Due to the overall effect that indoor air quality can have on human health, here are 5 facts about indoor air quality:
1. It is estimated that at least 20% of buildings in North American have some type of dampness (Institute of Medicine, 2004).
2. A lack of good quality ventilation (no windows, lack of opening a window, poor airflow) is a major constituent in creating poor air quality.
3. A musty odor may suggest the air quality is poor in an area.
4. Both Legionnaires disease and cases of Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis have been linked with poor indoor air quality (OSHA, 2016).
5. The quality of the air you breath, and the cleaner it is, can add up to 4 months onto the average person's life.
There are many variables to consider when discussing air quality. Those most susceptible are those with a weakened immune system, children, and those with preexisting respiratory issues.
Institute of Medicine (2004) Damp indoor spaces and health. Washington, DC, National Academies Press.
OSHA (2016) Indoor Air Quality-FAQ (on-line) Occupational Safety and Health Association. https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/indoorairquality/faqs.html
The author of our microbial blog is Fareed Nazaryfar. He holds a Master's degree in Environmental and Petroleum Geochemistry from Newcastle University (United Kingdom). He is also a Certified Mold Inspector, as well as an Environmental Manager-holding an ISO 14001 certification in Environmental Management.
MOLD HEALTH EFFECTS BLOG AND RESEARCH