Indoor air quality worse than ever
It has been estimated that poor indoor air quality at the workplace costs approximately $1 billion dollars a year in related medical expenses and costs employers about $60 billion a year in sick leave payments and lost production.
The indoor air quality of homes, schools and offices has severely deteriorated over the past 20 years due to the construction of more tightly sealed, less ventilated, structures and an increase in the use of synthetic materials to build and furnish the structures. Symptoms associated with indoor air pollution include headaches, sinus congestions, dizziness, itchy and watery eyes, nausea, lethargy, and a reduced capacity to concentrate. These health effects lead to decreased work performance and increased absenteeism.
Indoor air pollution can come from a variety of sources. Unvented gas-burning stoves and heaters emit carbon dioxide, volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides; many wood products including furniture and flooring, as well as carpeting and some fabrics contain formaldehyde; and paints, paint strippers, solvents aerosol sprays, cleansers and disinfectants, pesticides and air fresheners emit volatile organic compounds.
To reduce indoor air pollution at home, limit the use of products and materials that can contribute to poor air quality. Keep heat, ventilation and air condition system well maintained and use an effective air filter. Suggest the building management of your workplace do the same.