How To Protect Your Health From Wildfire Smoke

Unfortunately, another wildfire season is upon us. You can take several measures to keep your lungs smoke-free, and while all of us need to go outside occasionally, it’s advisable to limit your outdoor exposure, especially if you suffer from asthma or COPD. Symptoms of smoke exposure include the typical sore throat, irritated watery eyes, headaches, sinus irritation and shortness of breath. Severe symptoms include chest pains, dizziness, coughing and heart palpitations. If you experience any severe symptoms of wildfire smoke inhalation, see your physician immediately. Watch the air quality health index in your community as posted by the health authority and try to stay inside when levels are dangerous.
Drink plenty of water, as hydration helps your body systems clear particulates from your body. Reduce indoor air pollution by leaving the vacuuming until another time, so you don’t stir up dust, and not lighting scented candles. Because you’ve closed your windows and doors up tight with less air replacement, using cleaning products may emit unhealthy fumes that stay in the room, so just a word of caution on heavy cleaning solutions. Set your HVAC system to recirculation mode, so it’s not pulling in the pollutants and smoke from outside into your home. Even exhaust fans used in cooking can create tunnels where wildfire smoke can enter, so it’s best to keep them closed.
air conditioner filter
Other tips: Exercise indoors in clean air conditions, and leave the area if possible, to stay with friends or family in a smoke free area. HEPA filter air cleaners and air conditioners are highly efficient at cleaning the air, but please make sure your filters are clean.


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