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Indoor air quality: 4 ideas to drop home pollution levels

Posted by: Angie Hicks on

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates Americans spend at least 90 percent of their time indoors. Pollution levels inside the home are often two to five times higher than outside. In honor of "National Care About Your Indoor Air Month," here are some tips to help keep your lungs healthy and wheeze-free. Don't bite the dust. To decrease the amount of allergens, bacteria and mold spores in your home, be sure to regularly change the filter on your HVAC system. Unless you prefer pet dander, dust mites and penicillin on your pizza. Think like a rocket scientist. According to research conducted by NASA, certain plants such as spider plants, bamboo palms and mums actually consume toxins like formaldehyde and carbon monoxide. Just don't buy a man-eating alien plant from the "Little Shop of Horrors." Clean up your act. The smell of ammonia, bleach and pine may make you feel like your floor is spic-and-span. But to avoid the potentially toxic fumes and fragrances, use diluted dishwashing detergent for a floor you can truly eat off of. Fill your cracks. According to the American Lung Association, dampness alone — not just mold — brings higher risks of coughing and asthma-like symptoms. So caulk it up before you cough it up.