A. Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) refers to the effect, good or bad, of the contents of the environment (air, building materials and potable water) inside a structure. What contributes to the environmental quality is the impact the contents can have on the occupants.
A. IEQ problems are frequently encountered by occupants. The number of home and office environments with problems that occupants are not aware of, are even more common. Many of these problems cannot be seen or detected, unless scientific instrumentation is used.
A. Poor indoor air quality is among the top five environmental risks to public health, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In many instances, indoor air can be pathogenic, carcinogenic, or filled with agents that cause allergens. However, most people are unaware of the risks.
A. Problems associated with IEQ can include headaches, fatigue, skin irritation, allergies, coughing, sneezing, shortness of breath, interruption to sleep patterns or an overall feeling of ill health. Other problems can be more serious, such as respiratory disease or pulmonary issues. For the most part, a problem in the home or office may not be apparent unless qualified personnel and scientific instrumentation are used.
A. A recent report from the American Lung Association (ALA) noted that approximately 160 million Americans are breathing unhealthy air. Children and seniors are the age groups most at risk for respiratory disorders and diseases that result in decreased lung function. Every year, lung disease claims more than 349,000 lives in America, making it the third leading cause of death. The death rate for lung disease continues to increase faster than almost every other major disease.
A. No. Since the 1970s, the EPA has monitored and regulated levels of pollutants in outdoor air, significantly reducing emissions. However, to date, there are no federal standards for indoor air quality – even though EPA studies show that levels of air pollution inside a building can be five times higher than outdoor levels. Therefore, individuals bear the responsibility for assessing and monitoring IAQ as part of their overall indoor environmental quality.
A. Many types of air pollutants can be found indoors, including the following potentially harmful substances:
A. At least annually. Because the levels of indoor air contaminants can change quickly, it’s important to monitor IAQ as part of a regular IEQtest. For instance, an undetected plumbing leak can increase moisture buildup in walls and carpet/upholstery cleaning products can leave high levels of VOCs. Therefore, testing is recommended on a regular basis.
A. Moisture problems can have a significant effect on IEQ. Moisture indoors may be a result of rain leaks, floods, or excessive humidity. Moisture intrusion raises humidity, which contributes to increases in dust mites as well as mold, bacteria and other micro-organisms. Many people are allergic to dust mites and mold. In order to prevent growth of microorganisms in large numbers, water problems need to be dealt with rapidly.
A. Contact AirMD and our scientific team will guide you through the process.