An interesting phenomenon occurred during the coronavirus shutdown: Air quality around the world improved. Of particular note is the air improvements in Asia. During the height of the lockdown, the smog-clogged skies of China became clear, for the first time in a century, Mount Everest was visible from Bihar, India, and satellites showed clear images above Beijing.
According to an article in phys.org, newly-published research suggests that air quality improved by up to 40% while certain areas were in COVID-19 lockdown.
On the other hand, while outside air improved, indoor air quality seems to have worsened, and it’s not just because of the mold in your uncleaned refrigerator. As the masses stayed inside to ride out the pandemic, inside air deteriorated. According to a Scientific American article, indoor air quality worsened to the point that carbon dioxide levels and the presence of volatile organic compounds increased by up to 30%. Yikes.
So that begs the question. What can we do to keep our “indoor” air healthy? Here a few suggestions.
Stagnant air creates all sorts of problems. It increases the presence of airborne bacteria, mold, and dust mites. Not to mention the odor. You may not notice it, but visitors will.
You can improve ventilation by regularly replacing the filter on your HVAC system, keeping your air ducts clean, and opening the windows once and while.
Have Indoor House Plants
Yes, your 3rd grade teacher was right. Plants really do convert CO2 in to O2. Photosynthesis doesn’t just work with outdoor plants. It works indoors, too! So, not only are plants great to look at, they also do a great job cleaning the air.
Use Essential Oils
There is a growing body of articles pointing to the air-cleansing power of essential oils. Here is a good scholarly one to begin with. I’m convinced enough to recommend this idea to you. Just remember, use a diffuser! Don’t throw a bunch of oil around your living room 🙂
Even after you’ve applied these steps, there is one MAJOR step you mustn’t forget! Ensure you have a WORKING CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR. It just might save your life.