Thursday, January 11, 2007
Medical Reports: Healthy House
We eat, sleep and usually feel safe in our homes. But did you know, your house could be making you sick? Tonight, 7's Diana Diaz shows us how to look for hidden health hazards inside our homes, and how to keep a healthy house.
WSVN -- What's lurking in your house? Mold, dust or something worse?
Believe it or not, our homes can sometimes be toxic to our health.
The Environmental Protection Agency estimates indoor air quality is two to five times more polluted than the air we breathe outside.
Scott Lerman is worried about the health of his family, especially his 4-year-old son.
He agreed to let a lung specialist tour his home to point out things that could secretly be making them sick.
Scott Lerman: "We want to make sure that our house is as healthy as it can be so that my son can be as healthy as he can be."
First problem they found: Water damage on the ceiling, something that can lead to mold.
Scott Lerman: "What really counts is what's under here."
Since mold cannot grow without moisture, any area exposed to water needs to be dried or replaced as soon as possible.
Dust is another culprit, so you have to be a dust-buster.
Since it usually settles into carpet, experts suggest putting an easy-to-clean area rug over your carpet.
Also, get rid of dust ruffles, and don't keep anything under the bed.
Dr. Neil Schachter: "All these things can cause allergies, can cause asthma."
Another problem area -- a moldy shower.
Experts suggest cleaning the shower with chlorinated wipes, instead of spraying chemicals that can irritate your airways.
Pollutants can also come from the outside, so it's important to keep them out.
You can do that by installing an inexpensive filter.
It adjusts to fit most windows.
Scott was shocked by all the possible problems hanging around his home.
Scott Lerman: "You assume your house is healthy and until you get someone to point these things out."
Now he's already working to make his home sweet home, a healthy house.
If you have pets, their dander and saliva can trigger breathing problems too.
Make sure they stay off hard-to-clean areas like fabric-covered furniture and away from places where you sleep.
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