Indoor air quality refers to the inside of a building, particularly in relation to the health and comfort of the occupants. Whether you manage an office, government building, or hotel, indoor air quality is important. Workers are generally in your building eight hours a day, five days a week. As their employer, it’s up to you to ensure that your building is safe from air pollutants to keep them healthy and safe.
Why Indoor Air Quality Matters
By maintaining good indoor air quality, you reduce potential health concerns your employees might face. The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences states, “Both short- and long-term exposure to indoor air pollution can cause a range of health issues, including respiratory diseases, heart disease, cognitive deficits, and cancer.” Even asthma attacks due to allergens and airborne pollutants can be damaging to an employee’s health and productivity.
Install A Good Ventilation System
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Improving ventilation (air flow, filtration, and treatment) can help you protect building occupants from respiratory infections.” These infections can come from mold, chemicals, and airborne illnesses. A good ventilation system will bring clean air in from outside and remove contaminated air from the building.
But even the best ventilation system is only effective if it’s properly maintained. Be sure to change out and clean the air filters regularly. Otherwise you might find them polluting the air in your building rather than cleaning it.
Take Mold Prevention Steps
Mold is a major air quality detriment. It can cause short-term allergic reactions in some and long-term health issues in others. That’s why it’s essential to take steps to prevent mold from growing in your facility.
One way you can do this is by keeping an eye out for mold. Mold often grows in moist environments, so using a dehumidifier in places that see a lot of humidity, like bathrooms, can help. Also consider repainting the walls as many paints act as a seal against moisture. In fact, if you see mold growing on a wall, you should immediately have the spot cleaned and repainted to prevent it from growing further.
Avoid Keeping Toxic Materials In Your Building
You might not think you have toxic materials in your office, but you probably do. Items like liquid drain cleaners can be hazardous if not sealed and stored properly. Meanwhile, cleaning chemicals like bleach and ammonia can create deadly gasses if they’re accidentally mixed.
If you employ a commercial cleaning service, consider asking them to swap out the more volatile and harsh cleaning chemicals for greener cleaning solutions. This will improve your building’s indoor air quality and prevent potential long-term health problems.
It’s easy to take your building’s indoor air quality for granted. However, being mindful of your employees’ health and comfort will increase their productivity. Check your ventilation systems, consider implementing green cleaning programs to remove harsh cleaning chemicals, and take steps to keep mold out of your building, and your building’s indoor air quality will be fresh and clean.