- People. 70-90% of what you see floating in a ray of sunshine entering your home is dead human skin flakes. And remember, we can only see about 10% of the airborne pollutants. Dead human skin is a staple of the dust mite diet.
- Dust. House dust is a mixture of diverse substances that can cause allergies. House dust is composed of a number of natural substances, including dried food particles, mold spores, pollen, fabric fibers, animal dander, and insect parts, especially those of dust mites and cockroaches. However, particles and debris from dust mites are the major source of allergens in dust. As is the case with other allergens, these particles contain proteins that are small enough to become airborne and inhaled.
- Allergens. Pollens, ragweed, and a variety of other allergens find their way into the home from outdoors.
- Carpet, Plywood, and other Construction Materials. The “new” smell associated with new carpet, newly painted walls, new home, remodeled room, etc. is actually the out-gassing of the chemical solutions used to treat these products. These are known an VOCs.
- Pillows and Blankets. Dust mites comprise over 50% of the weight of the average pillow. Dust mite allergy is an allergic reaction to tiny bugs that commonly live in house dust. Signs of dust mite allergy include sneezing and runny nose. Many people with dust mite allergy also experience signs of asthma, such as wheezing and difficulty breathing.
- HVAC Systems. Air ducts serve as a fertile breeding ground for mold spores.
- Household Cleaners/Aerosols, Insecticides, Pesticides. We literally poison the air we breathe with chemical fumes and toxins when we use these products.
- Moist things or humid environments. Mold spores, bacteria, and mildew thrive in dampened towels, wash cloths, and moist or humid areas of the home. Children in homes with high mold show persistent, cold-like symptoms – 300% more than average.
- Pets. Airborne animal and/or pet dander (dried spit from the animal that breaks off the end of their hair and floats in air since they are so small) is a common trigger for allergies and asthma. Plus, the feces from your pet emits added contaminates into the air.
- Insects and other Bugs. Insects and bugs feces are a powerful allergen. In a recent extensive study by the New England Journal of Medicine, more than half the homes tested had high levels of cockroaches. Children living in these homes were more than three times as likely to be hospitalized for asthma.
- Smoking. Smoking in the home or vehicle leaves the air being breathed dense with over 3600 cancer-causing toxins. These toxins also cling to the clothing we wear, and release themselves when we enter other homes and buildings.
Where to start? Well, more than a good daily or weekly routine of cleaning, consider a Spring and Fall effort to get rid of junk, old clothes and furniture, and clean out those areas rarely visited. Even dare to reduce the clutter and junk in the basement and garage.
Vacuum regularly, and use a HEPA vacuum that you empty often. And, change your furnace air filter every three months.
But, odors can be more than a cleaning issue. They become embedded in carpet, furniture, and something called the “Biofilm”. The biofilm is a thin layer of bacteria that acts like an immense sponge for all types of bacteria, virus, pollution, and smells. The biofilm is often the source of the “lived in” smell that is nearly impossible to remove.
Professional odor removal services are trained and certified to use various treatments that will not add to the pollution factor of the home. Proper application of ozone, liquid oxidizers, antimicrobial treatments, and essential oils will make your home or office as health and clean smelling as possible.