Do you know what air quality is safe for babies? Air quality changes constantly. With most everyone staying in this year, cities around the world have seen dramatic changes in outdoor air quality. Clean air is vital to good health, and indoor air can be more polluted than outdoor air.
The health impacts of poor indoor air quality are many pollutants, and allergens enter the lungs of the babies and trigger allergic reactions. Even harmless objects at home can trigger serious harm, and indoor air pollution is deadlier than outdoor pollution. Babies require maximum safety against air pollution.
The babies’ lungs and immune systems are immature and still developing; pollutants seep into the lungs and initiate inflammation once inhaled. This can lead to cough, fast breathing, aggravated bronchitis, and precipitates symptoms of asthma. There’s a myth that staying indoors protects anyone from pollution, and however, it is not entirely effective.
Is bad air quality bad for babies?
Our homes have indoor air pollutants, including gaseous pollutants and particulate matter, that affect everyone’s health and determine safe air quality for babies. If that baby survives childhood, the daily damage is done to their brain and lungs; the heart will limit their chances of growing into healthy, productive adults. Cognitive damage lowering of a child’s ability to learn means children exposed to air pollution will struggle at school and fail to reach their full potential.
Exposure to air pollution at a very young age, like in babies, can hinder lung growth, imbibe brain development and increase the risk of conditions like asthma. Air pollution affects people of all age groups. Still, children are most vulnerable to its harmful effects due to their higher breathing rate to body size ratio and less developed natural barriers in the lungs.
Outdoor pollutants seep in, accumulate, and concentrate indoors, especially during winters. The fact that indoor allergens like dust mites, molds, and cooking fumes worsen indoor air quality.
Here are some effects of bad air quality on babies:
• Sore throat
• Irritation in throat
• Blocked nose
• Runny nose
• Respiratory distress
• Rapid breathing
• Trigger asthma attack
Are babies sensitive to air quality?
It is important to identify signs of a respiratory problem in a child and get immediate treatment to avoid complications and determine what air quality is safe for babies.
Here are the signs that babies might be sensitive to air quality. If a child is:
- breathing fast
- unable to take the food properly
- develops a blueness of hands or lips
- difficulty in breathing
- the hollowness of the chest while breathing
This is a baby who needs to be seen by a doctor and treated appropriately or may need hospitalization and oxygenation. Taking precautions may help to protect a baby from the harmful effects of bad air quality.
Here are some precautions for a baby to breathe a good air quality:
- Keep the baby indoors when the pollution level outside is high
- Avoid taking the baby to polluted areas
- Avoid the exposure of smoke emissions area
- Do not let anyone smoke near a baby
- Avoid using strong fumes at home
- Keep the house properly ventilated
How does air quality affect babies?
Five basic types of compounds that impact the air quality that affects babies.
- Toxic compounds
- Infectious illness
- Allergens or particulates
- Microbial growth
- Safety gases
Symptoms of these compounds can include:
- Respiratory irritation
- Asthma Flare-ups
There are five ways to improve the indoor air quality at home:
- Change the furnace filter
The furnace filter helps prevent dust and particles from getting into the furnace parts and from being blown out into the air. A filthy air filter won’t do the furnace any good. Change the ail filter depending on what type and choose a higher quality pleated or electrostatically charged filter.
- Having an air purifier
Air purifier helps remove pollutants from the home’s air. In choosing one, check its rating for cleaning speed and range. The higher, the better. Make sure it can cover the size of the room to be located at.
- Having clean carpeting and fabric
Particles and allergens settle on bedding, furniture, and carpeting. Wash the bedding sheets at least once a week. Dust and clean regularly using a slightly dampened cloth, a microfiber cloth, or a dusting cloth that won’t kick particles back up into the air. Vacuum carpeting and furniture routinely to clear the dirt and pet dander that settles there.
- Run the exhaust fans in the kitchen and the bathroom
This can help ventilate VOCs that can build up when cooking, cleaning, making home improvements, or even polishing nails. It can also help vent moisture that can cause mold and mildew to grow.
- Using a Radon Test Kit
Radon is the second leading cause of cancer. It gets in a house through foundation cracks and gaps. Using a radon test kit to see if a room has hazardous levels. If the room has it, contact a professional radon mitigation specialist to get it taken care of.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is moderate air quality OK for Baby?
It is essential to know when the air is unhealthy for the babies. It has five levels of classification for air quality.
1. “Good” means that air pollution is so low and there is a slight health risk.
2. “Moderate” means people with health problems and should limit time outdoors.
3. “Unhealthy for sensitive groups” means people with health problems may have worsened symptoms.
4. “Unhealthy for everyone” means everyone should limit time outdoors as well as strenuous activities.
5. “Very unhealthy for everyone” means everyone should stay indoors, close windows, and use air filters.
Moderate air quality for babies is not OK and maybe worse if a baby has asthma, COPD, heart disease, or other heart-lung conditions.
Do you know plants that are child-friendly but also can help improve air quality?
Redecorate your heart and mind with these indoor plants that can give your home a cleaner and healthier air quality. NASA also recommends it. Here is the list of plants to help the air quality be safe for the babies:
- English Ivy – This plant is particularly useful in eliminating airborne fecal matter particles. It also can soak up carcinogens from secondhand smoke that helps purify small areas like in a baby place.
- Boston Fern – This plant is a natural air humidifier that removes more formaldehyde and pollutants from car exhaust that might migrate from an attached garage.
- Golden Pothos – This plant is for the garden beginner’s best bet. It removes many air pollutants and eliminating formaldehyde and carbon monoxide as well.
- Snake plant – This plant is the most popular plant in purifying the air that it can suck in carbon dioxide and releases oxygen in the night. That’s why people chose to keep it in their bedroom or carpeted living room like in a babies’ room. It prevents formaldehyde that leaks from the carpet and wood furniture from sticking around the air.
- Peace Lily – This plant removes trichloroethylene, benzene, acetone, and alcohol from the air.
- Dracaena – This plant eliminates trichloroethylene that comes from solvents and varnishes.
- Dragon Tree – This plant is a widely popular option for homes because of its effect of purifying power that pulls xylene that comes from car exhaust, pits, and cigarettes.
- Lady Palm – This plant is an effective filter for multiple indoor pollutants.
- Bamboo Palm – This plant is one of the best air filters for benzene and trichloroethylene and a great humidifier. It releases a good deal of moisture into the air and is considerably resistant to insect infestation.
- Spider Plant – This plant is best placed near the fireplace and kitchen where carbon monoxide may build.
The effectiveness of particular plants to purify the air as homes become more insulated and efficient. Plants also make it easier to trap indoor air pollutants, chemicals like benzene, formaldehyde, and ammonia that can come from household items and pollute the home’s atmosphere without any visual warning. Air circulation plays a large part in removing air pollutants to have the best air quality in a space.
Neglecting the quality of the air you breathe daily in severe consequences like illness, allergies, asthma is just a few of many inconveniences that come from airborne particles floating around your home. Detoxifying our home is an integral part of the detox concept.
Preventive measures are a must to make the environment pollution-free and ensure a healthy future for children. Indoor air quality is something we can improve for future generations to grow with clean air, especially when they’re still babies. It is important to check air quality not only for ourselves but especially for the babies as well.