One of the top five public health risks facing the United States is the air we breathe indoors — in our homes, schools and businesses.
It’s where Americans spend about 90 percent of their time, and where levels of pollution could be two to five times higher than outdoor levels, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Indoor air pollutants — such as dust mites, volatile organic compounds (known as VOCs), fibrous particulates, radon, mold and other contaminants — can trigger short- and long-term health problems ranging from asthma to allergies.
A strong indicator of poor indoor air quality is a person’s symptoms dissipating when away from the structure and increasing when one returns to it. The EPA recently announced it would spend $2.4 million on a cooperative to help increase awareness and improve indoor air quality nationwide.