Indoor Air Quality & Your Health
Welcome back to the Metro Screenworks blog! We hope you enjoyed your holidays and are ready for a new year. With a new year often comes the setting of new year's resolutions and goals to get more fit and live a healthier lifestyle. Stereotypically, many people join gyms and health clubs, and spend their Christmas cash on a new wardrobe of workout clothes hoping that this will be “their year.” We think it’s a great idea to get healthier and more fit. However, is this the only way to truly be healthier during the new year?
Keep reading to learn more about indoor air quality, the effects on your health, and more. Be sure to shop Metro Screenworks.com for all your home improvement needs. We offer custom-made screens as well as screen rolls, screen doors, and so much more. Even though, most of the country is still in the throes of winter it is time to begin considering the quality of your window screens.
As we mentioned above, it is easy to get hyper focused on one area of our health. However, to really be as healthy as possible, we must consider all the aspects of our lifestyle and how they can affect us. With that being said, we must consider the quality of our indoor air. Air quality can have a profound effect on our physical, mental, and emotional health. Because many of our modern homes, office buildings, and other indoor spaces are built to be airtight, we do not receive outdoor air unless we open our windows. Today, we are going to tell you why it’s so important that you open your windows and allow cool, fresh air to filter through your window screens.
Your lungs, like many of your body’s organs, are filters. As you inhale, you breath in air and whatever is in the air. This means, we will breath in allergens, dust, construction particles, cat hair, dog dander, and whatever else is floating around in the air. Unfortunately, if we don’t have access to clean air, our lungs don’t have a chance to clear; if we fail to not only purify our indoor air, but also rid our homes of such particles, we can end up with perpetual allergies, illness, and low quality of health.
Aids in Digestion
Clean air can actually aid in digestion. To get the full benefit, it is best to take a quick walk outside or to do something else that is active. By getting our blood moving, our bodies are better able to absorb nutrients, move digestion along, keep our circulation effective and strong, and remove harmful toxins that can build up in our bodies as a result of what we eat, drink, and are exposed to on a daily basis.
Prompts the Release of Serotonin
Serotonin is one of the main chemicals in our brains that causes us to feel happy. Breathing in oxygen actually helps to stimulate the release of serotonin and, as a result, can lift our mood. If you have ever wondered, why it is suggested that you “take a deep breath” when you are feeling anxious or tense, this is why!
Boosts the Immune System
Oxygen and fresh air also boosts the immune system. In order to effectively fight bacterial infections, viruses, allergens, and other harmful free radicals, our immune system needs oxygen. Additionally, allowing fresh air to penetrate your home, can help remove some of the free radicals and allergens that can permeate the air when our home’s indoor air is unstirred and stale.
Provides Mental Clarity
Getting the oxygen you need can also promote mental clarity. Our brains need oxygen to function. If they aren’t getting the oxygen that they need, we will have difficulty making decisions, coming up with new ideas, problem-solving, and thinking clearly and calmly about difficult situations. Taking some deep breaths, opening the widows, and even going for a walk outside can help us solve difficult issues and allow us to live healthier, happier, and more productive lives.
In order to get access to fresh air in our homes and businesses without letting four-,six-, eight-legged and even two-legged pests in our homes, we need effective and tight-fitting screens. Metro Screenworks has been the premier provider of reliable window screens, screen doors, screen rolls, and other products for over thirty years.
To learn more about us, our products, and how you can get the best air quality in your home, keep reading or visit our website. We offer Allergy Guard air filtration screens that can help improve your indoor air quality without causing your allergies to flare up.
Breathing is something our body does naturally very well without us having to think much about it. Our lungs are incredibly efficient and exhalation is one of the body’s main ways of getting rid of toxins and other harmful substances. Additionally, when we happen to breathe in poisonous substances, our body does its best to get rid of them or to let us know that the air we are breathing isn’t good for us and we should leave the area.
However, there is only so much our lungs can do for us. Indoor air pollution might not be deadly, but over time, exposure can have negative consequences not to mention, cause us to experience immediate irritating symptoms.
Indoor Air Pollution: What You Need to Know
Understanding the ill effects of indoor air pollution is becoming increasingly important as we are a society that spends a great deal of our time indoors whether it be at work or at home. Though we can’t always affect our environment at work, we can create a favorable environment for ourselves in our homes.
Indoor Air Quality
The EPA defines Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) as “the air quality within and around buildings and structures, especially as it relates to the health and comfort of building occupants.” Though outdoor sources can sometimes affect indoor conditions, many things in our home can cause unfavorable air quality.
Common Indoor Pollutants
Though there has been an improvement in building practices that has gotten rid of many of the harmful substances that we used in the past to construct our homes and buildings (asbestos, lead, etc.), that still doesn’t clear your home from being susceptible to other pollutants.
- Biological Pollutants
- Carbon Monoxide (CO)
- Formaldehyde/Pressed Wood Products
- Lead (Pb)
- Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)
- Radon (Rn)
- Indoor Particulate Matter
- Secondhand Smoke/Environmental Tobacco Smoke
- Stoves, Heaters, Fireplaces and Chimneys
- Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
*** List provided by the EPA.
Biological Pollutants: Pollen, Viruses, Bacteria, Bugs, Etc.
Your home may be clear of asbestos. However, most homes — depending on how clean they are — are full of biological pollutants. Biological pollutants include:
- Pet dander and saliva
- Hair, dry skin, and other substances from people
- Insect and rodent droppings and body parts
- Rodent urine (dry urine will become airborne)
Biological contaminants all originate from a living thing, and certain areas of our homes, may be more polluted than others, and can create the right conditions for these pollutants to thrive.
How to Get Rid of Biological Pollutants
Though opening your windows and using Allergy Guard window filter screens can enhance your indoor air quality and clear your air of pollutants. To truly decrease the effects of biological pollutants, you must do more.
The Effects of Biological Contaminants
No one likes cleaning, but the effects of indoor contaminants could be considerably affecting your health. These contaminants can trigger serious allergic reactions like hypersensitivity pneumonitis, allergic rhinitis, and asthma. However, you may be feeling the effects in more subtle ways:
- Shortness of breath
- Digestive problems
If you’ve recently been battling these symptoms it may be time to take a look at your home. What’s more, serious infectious illnesses are transmitted through the air and mold and mildew naturally release toxic-substances that can eventually have deadly effects.
Secondhand Smoke/ Environmental Tobacco Smoke
If you are a smoker or have lived with someone who smokes inside your home, you are probably well aware of the effects that smoking can have on your health. However, have you thought about the effects it could be having on your home’s indoor air quality?
The Secondhand Smoke Sources
Secondhand smoke is that which is given off by smoking devices and exhaled by the smoker themselves, and according to the EPA contains 7,000 substances which are classified as a Group A carcinogen. Smoke can easily move from room to room and, oftentimes, an increase in ventilation doesn’t protect you or your home from its effects.
Effects of Secondhand Smoke
Secondhand smoke, as the name indicates, doesn’t just affect the smoker. The Surgeon General Report states that non-smokers exposed to secondhand smoke are 25-30% more likely to develop heart disease and 20-30% predisposed to develop lung cancer.
How Do I Reduce Secondhand Smoke?
Since extra ventilation does little to reduce secondhand smoke, the only way to truly reduce the effects is to smoke outside the home in a well-ventilated area.
Indoor Particulate Matter: Eradicate Harmful Inhalable Particles
In our day-to-day lives, we are exposed to a variety of substances. Though our lungs are very capable of filtering and releasing toxins, there are some toxins that they simply can not get rid of. As a result, these particles stay within the lungs causing serious illness and can even make their way into the bloodstream.
Sources of Indoor Particulate Matter
Though secondhand smoke also qualifies as indoor particulate matter, there are many other substances that we encounter in our home that could be creating harmful effects such as:
- Stovetop or cooking smoke
- Space heaters
- Kerosene heaters
- Fumes and smoke from hobbies
Symptoms of Inhalable Particles
Though minimal exposure might not create serious, chronic health issues, you should discover the source and reduce your exposure if you experience these symptoms:
- Irritation in the eye, nose, and throat
- Increase in coronary and respiratory disease symptoms
Do you suffer from seasonal allergies or do you always have an allergy pill or two in your pocket at all times? Allergies are frustrating to deal with especially if you like spending time outside in the great outdoors. Though we can’t help how you feel when you’re outside your home, we can help how you feel inside your home with Allergy Guard screens!
Why Do I Need Allergy Guard Screens?
Though modern building practices have helped us to reduce drafts and to increase the energy efficiency of our homes and businesses, this has also increased our indoor air pollution. To decrease the effects of indoor air pollution you must open the windows to create airflow and move stale air. Allergy Guard screens with PM 2.5 and PM 10 allow you to do just that without suffering from allergens and adding other pollutants to your air.
Though standard screens do block some particles, they can not block out most particles that cause indoor air pollution.
What Makes Allergy Window Screens Different?
Though air filtration screens have been around for a while, Allergy Guard outperforms them all with all the benefits they can provide you:
Watch this short video to see just how effective the Allergy Guard is!
What Do These Benefits Mean For Me?
To put it simply, Allergy Guard window dust filter screens do more than just keep dust and pollen outside where they belong.
Allergy Guard screens are made to enhance all aspects of your home’s creature comforts and may even lower your energy bills, extend the health of your central heating and cooling system (puts less strain on filters), along with a multitude of other benefits.
How Does Allergy Guard Work?
Allergy Guard air filter screens provide all the benefits that standard screens provide — keeps insects and other pests out of your life — however, they can do so much more due to their unique construction. To begin with, we use high-performance nano-fiber screen that can catch even the finest dust particles:
Superior Filtration Properties
Though some indoor air pollutants we can see with the human eye, such as some pollen, others we can not. Allergy Guard can catch even these microscopic particles. Check out the infographic below to see just how effective our window screen filter is.
Unlike standard window screens Allergy Guard is made up of three layers of specially engineered screening material:
- High-strength vinyl-coated glass fiber exterior face
- Proprietary nanofiber layer
- 100% polyester interior face
If you are familiar with any of Metro Screenwork's other products, you will know that we use construction materials such as vinyl-coatings and polyester to create some of our toughest products, including our pet screen and super screen. Allergy Guard provides extra-protection as a result of these highly durable materials — and with the nanofiber layer, which can catch particles as small as 300 nanometers.
Pollen Screen That Also Provides UV Protection
When it comes to specialty screens, in many cases, you have to pick and choose between screens that offer the benefits you need the most — but not all the benefits you want. Thankfully, when you order from Metro Screenworks, you can count on receiving quality products that can do a lot for you. However, not every product can offer you durability, window pollen filter benefits, and UV and infrared protection. With Allergy Guard, you get multiple benefits.
Don’t Take Our Word For It: Check Out These Test Results
There are a lot of pollen screens and other air filter window screens out there that you can even pick-up or order from your local home improvement store. However, these do not compare to Allergy Guard. If you would buy these products, you would essentially be paying the same amount of money for fewer benefits. If you truly want to enhance your health and your home, Allergy Guard is the product that truly will, and will also outlast the competition.
Do you want to learn more about indoor air quality and the effects that window screens can have on your health? Check out our blog!