There are many environmental contaminants that can cause allergies
and sensitivities as well. This puts considerable strain on your immune
system. The allergic reaction is continuous, which keeps your immune system in
a constant state of attack. Ultimately, it weakens your immune system making
you more susceptible to disease.
Lyme patients often experience hypersensitivity to environmental
allergies. This is usually due to the high amount of toxic load in the body. If
toxins and allergens are not removed from the environment, it can lead to
If you suspect there are allergens and contaminants in your home you
can always hire someone to do an air quality analysis. This can often
narrow down the potential harmful contaminants and gives you a focus on what
to change or remove. Some environmental contaminants (like lead or asbestos)
can cause considerable harm to the human body and need to be removed
immediately and properly. Have an expert inspect your home for these
types of hazards.
Home Building Products
The products used to build a home can release toxins into the air.
Carpeting and laminate flooring has plastic derivatives that can slowly release
toxins into the air. Polyurethane coatings on wood can do the same thing. If
you are replacing flooring in your home, do your research before choosing a
product. Countertops and cabinets can also contaminate the air. Know the
risks and assess what the best option is. Cheaper is not necessarily
Maintaining your home to prevent mold and other harmful deteriorating
effects is important. Mold contamination can cause all sorts of serious
If there has been a leak that did not dry quickly, mold could be growing inside
your ceilings or walls. If your basement or bathroom is damp, mold can grow.
Ventilation and regular cleaning is also crucial.
If there is flooding or leaking, it is important to have the water cleaned up and
the room dried properly to prevent mold growth. Maintaining the roof, siding,
windows, and doors on a house are the best prevention for mold.
Radon exposure is a serious issue and is in approximately 1 in 3 homes.
It is estimated to cause 20,000 deaths due to lung cancer each year in the
U.S. alone. Before you buy a house, have this tested. If you are unsure in your
own home, have it tested.
Radon is a radioactive gas with no color, odor, or taste. It is sometimes
found in groundwater, soil, confined spaces, or building products. In many
cases this can be an issue in the workplace.
There may be lead paint if it is an old home inside or out. If this is the
case, particularly if the paint is deteriorating and chipping, it will need to be
removed by a licensed specialist in lead removal. Lead is also sometimes found
in drinking water form deteriorating pipes. Lead is highly toxic to animals and
humans, particularly children when inhaled or ingested(See the Heavy
Metals & Parasites page).
Asbestos can be found in insulation in older homes. It was also used to
cover ductwork, pipes, and some old knob & tube wiring. It can also be found in
old electrical cords and fireproofing materials. This was widely used in
industry as a fire retardant and insulator up until it was banned in 1989.
Asbestos fibers stick to the tissues of the lungs. Over time it creates scar
tissue and eventually can cause Cancer. When in doubt, have an expert
inspect and remove it if necessary.
Having an adequate ventilation and filtration system can reduce air
borne allergens significantly. There are many options available and it is a
very personal choice. Do your research and have an expert assess your home.
Air movement is essential. Change filters often. In some cases, you may
need to replace or reseal windows and doors and avoid leaving them open.
Pet Allergies are common amongst most people. Generally it is an allergy
to the dander, not the hair of the pet. Some people are allergic to cat saliva as
well. Using hypoallergenic bedding and washing it regularly can help. Hardwood
or tile floors instead of carpet are easier to keep allergen free. Keep pets
brushed and bathed. Use filtration in your ventilation system and change filters
often to limit exposure. If allergies are severe, you may need to relinquish
having a pet.
Dust in the air causes allergic reactions in a lot of people worldwide. Dust
contains tiny bits and particles of the fabrics, dirt, and items in the
environment. It also contains tiny microscopic organisms called dust
mites. They feed on dead flakes of skin and turn it into dirt. The waste
products of these creatures invoke an immune response in people who have an
allergy to it. It often causes asthma and many other allergic problems. Keeping
floors and furniture clean and using filtrations systems can minimize
exposure to this.
Many people work in environments where they are subjected to
contaminants and irritants. If you have allergies or sensitivities to these, you
may have to change your location of employment. In some cases, this may
seem impossible. But, if there is any way to limit your exposure, the
healthier you will be and the better quality of life you will lead.
Some of these things can include exposure to lead, asbestos or mold in old
buildings, fumes, manufacturing products, chemicals and products used at the
work place, environmental contaminants in fields such as construction, medical
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