Monday, February 16, 2009

Health Tips for February 16

Health Tip: Prevent Mold in the Home

Mold is a tiny fungus that can grow inside the home and cause allergies and other health problems.

The University of Virginia Health System offers these suggestions to help keep mold out of your home:

  • Keep humidity at low levels -- between 40 percent and 60 percent, and use an air conditioner or dehumidifier when it's humid outside.
  • Use exhaust fans to keep areas such as kitchens and bathrooms well ventilated.
  • Keep carpet out of areas where moisture may collect, such as bathrooms or basements.
  • Promptly and thoroughly dry any furnishings that get wet, especially carpets or upholstered furniture.
  • Fix any leaky plumbing, roofs, or walls.
  • Use cleaners that kill mold.
  • If you're painting, add a mold inhibitor to the paint.

Health Tip: Reduce Pesticide Exposure

Pesticides can help keep your home free of insects, rodents and other unwanted visitors, but exposure to these products can pose serious health risks.

The National Safety Council offers these suggestions when working with pesticides:

  • Only use pesticides that have been legally purchased, and are approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or similar government agency.
  • Carefully read directions on the pesticide label, and follow them exactly.
  • When you can, use non-chemical pesticides.
  • Keep the work area well-ventilated.
  • Make sure you safely dispose of any excess product.

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