Keep it Clean
How a Dirty Home Affects Your Health
- It can trigger asthma attacks and/or set off allergy symptoms.
- It can increase the risk from breathing problems (asthma, coughing, and shortness of breath).
- It can increase exposure to dangerous chemicals (lead and household cleaners) that can cause poisoning and many other health problems.
How to Know if You Have a Problem
Your home might pose some problems if you see:
- Dirt or dust on floors, windows, furniture, counters, or curtains
- Grease or dirt on stove or counters
- Old food or food wrappings lying around
- Garbage cans that are not covered
- Pests and/or their droppings or urine
- Clutter on floors, furniture, or counters
How to Fix the Problem
- Clear away clutter. Pick up things that do not belong on the floor, countertops, and furniture, and store them where they do belong.
- Use safer cleaning products, and clean often.
- Use a damp mop and damp dust cloth to clean.
- Vacuum carefully and often. If possible, use a vacuum that has a HEPA filter, which picks up very small particles of dirt.
- Wash bedding once a week, and use hot water to kill dust mites.
- Leave your shoes at the door to keep dirt out of your home.
- Put doormats at each door to trap dirt.
- Keep pets off beds and out of the bedroom.
- If possible, replace materials that are more difficult to clean (like carpets) with materials that are easier to clean (like wood or linoleum floors).
For more information:
Norwalk Health Department - Lead Poisoning Prevention
CT Department of Public Health - Asthma
CT Department of Public Health - Indoor Air Quality
CT Department of Energy & Environmental Protection - Household Alternatives for Reducing Toxic Products in the Home
CT Department of Energy & Environmental Protection - Integrated Pest Management
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home