How to Maintain a Healthy Home
It’s estimated that we spend around two-thirds of our lives in our home. But despite this fact we rarely consider the impact that it has on our health and wellbeing. Most people think of eating wholesome food as a way to better health, and our article on ‘Eat and Drink Your Way to Better Oral Health’ covered some healthy food and drink to illustrate this point. But there is a lot more to health and wellbeing and it starts in the home. This short guide features five top tips on how to maintain a healthy home.
1. Hygiene is Important
Personal and household hygiene are important to improve the health and wellbeing of all family members. Washing your hands thoroughly when coming home is crucial to help prevent, contracting and spreading any communicable diseases. Having said that, while maintaining good personal and household hygiene is vital to have a healthy home, too many people rely heavily on household disinfectant and anti-bacterial chemicals that kill both good and bad bacteria. The effect of which is an overly clean environment that Dr. Ranbir Kaulsay says doesn’t prime our immune systems to give them the opportunity to fight what they should. So, while you should maintain a clean home, use disinfectants and other chemicals sparingly to keep your home and family healthier.
2. Maintain Your Plumbing
Making sure that your pipes and plumbing are in good working order. Plumbing that is free of leaks and water damage will help maintain a healthier home. Water leaks can cause mildew which will, in turn, lead to mould. To help keep your home free of unhealthy mould, Better Homes & Gardens recommends you fix plumbing leaks as soon as possible. Leaks can happen anywhere along a home’s water supply and are generally very difficult to detect. This is why prudent homeowners regularly inspect their pipes for any damage. Plumbing professionals HomeServe outline how crucial it is to respond to any issues related to your plumbing and heating systems. as they can directly affect how healthy, safe, and comfortable your home is in general. Regular inspections and maintenance will help prevent mould and related respiratory diseases. And in return keep your family healthy.
3. Let Plenty of Natural Light In
Exposure to natural light has many health benefits. It creates a balanced circadian rhythm which impacts your mood, hormone levels and, as ‘8 Ways to Create a Healthy Home’ reveals it enhances your sleep/wake cycles for a more restful sleep. A good balance of natural light is important as too much or too little can cause visual discomfort which can lead to both psychological and physiological problems. Bringing more light into the home is easy – open curtains or blinds during the day, use mirrors to reflect light and clean your windows regularly.
4. Adopt a Pet
If you’ve ever needed a good reason to adopt an animal, here is one based on scientific research as to why pets, dogs in particular, are associated with health benefits. A study published in the Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology concluded that pets are associated with a number of health benefits. These benefits include:
- An improved emotional state.
- Lower blood pressure.
- Reduced cardiovascular risk.
- Better mood.
All these benefits result in dog owners being less sedentary and having lower blood pressure, as well as lower cholesterol and triglycerides.
5. Purify Your Air
The National Institute of Horticulture reported that indoor air can be as much as 12 times more polluted than outdoor air. Our homes are generally filled with Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) from paint, furniture, and building materials. To this effect, NASA has shown that houseplants were able to remove as much as 87% of airborne toxins in a 24-hour period. Plants like English ivy and asparagus fern are natural air scrubbers. Houseplants like spider plants, peace lily and ficus can also keep you healthier by fighting the effects of the common cold by lowering symptoms of a sore throat, fatigue and headaches. Using an air purifier in conjunction with plants could further reduce the number of airborne pollutants and particulates. For more inspiration on what plants to keep in your home read our article Six House Plants that Clean the Air we Breathe in Our Home.
Written by M.D. – M.D. is a passionate Art History Graduate who loves to share her style, lifestyle and travel knowledge through her writing. Born in New York City and raised throughout the world, M.D. spent most of her time in Italy where she studied Art History in Florence. She now lives in Germany, working in an Art Gallery during the day and writing at night.