Every breath you take… can be either a dangerous or a healthy experience!
We should be worried about the air we breathe. No, we should be afraid of the air we breathe!
In today’s world, it’s not just the air we breathe outside on the city streets, but the air inside our homes and offices - places where we should feel safe and secure - that has become a life-threatening problem. When one looks at the facts, including the latest research done by scientists and experts, it becomes painfully clear that neither the streets nor our homes are safe places for us to live and work! What can we do? We can’t simply jump to another planet. We live here on Earth, and unfortunately the Earth is becoming less and less hospitable to life. We need to do something - for the Earth, and for our families.
Research shows that millions of people die annually due to problems resulting from overexposure to airborne pollutants. More and more we see these pollutants in our homes, in front of our TVs, in our kitchens, bedrooms, bathrooms - you name it - the air there is polluted and dangerous to breathe! We have to take steps to protect not only ourselves, but our families, our children, our lives, and our happiness. We have to do something so that we do not become one of the millions of deaths each year!
We at Zepter believe that most people don’t know the facts about air pollution and the health problems it causes. In this document, we will briefly cover a few of these problems. The truth might be painful, but please keep reading. In order to protect ourselves and our families, it is important that we know the enemy.
Probably the worst problem with this threat is that we don’t even know that it’s happening! It is easy for us to think "It won’t happen to me!" A dry cough in the winter, watery eyes and congestion can all be explained by other things. Colds, flu, other illnesses take credit and often justly so, for many of the symptoms; but when we find out that it is happening to us, that we are breathing toxic air, it’s already too late. The damage has been done and our bodies are weakened and ill.
We must take preventative steps to avoid health issues caused by pollution in our own homes!
Zepter’s Therapy Air Purifying Systems have the answers. Therapy Air Purifying Systems effectively fight against indoor air pollution, giving you and your loved ones a chance to breathe freely!
Now that we have a way to protect ourselves, it would be irresponsible for us NOT to take steps to prevent illness resulting from polluted indoor air - not only for our health, but for the health of our children. Especially for children whose young lungs and physique make them even more susceptible to the dangers of pollution.
A steady increase in respiratory illnesses such as allergies, asthma, and even cancer - even as advances are made in medical technology - indicates there must be something else causing the rise in problems. Is it any coincidence that the air quality is decreasing at a similar rate? No. We are victims of our polluted environment - but now we don’t have to be!
Rivers of dust
Like the ocean, the atmosphere is full of many currents. These currents can take dust and pollution from one place to almost anywhere in the world. Sand from the Sahara has been found in great quantity in the Caribbean, and even mixed with the snow in Scandinavia! These are normal, natural processes in the atmosphere. These same air currents can carry man-made pollutants as well. Just living in the countryside does not keep you safe from the toxins created in industrial areas.
For example, the radioactive cloud from Chernobyl reached all the way to Japan!
Our environment contains at least 12 chemicals that are known to be extremely harmful to human beings, and the air currents are spreading them everywhere. Rivers of Dust have become Rivers of Toxins. Man-made pollution is spreading to the farthest corners of the world! Is there anywhere left with clean, breathable air?
Nowhere to hide!
Air pollution affects everyone. We can’t hide from it. We are still surrounded by pollutants and toxins wherever we breathe, especially in our own homes!
The level of air pollution inside the home can be 2, 5, up to 100 times worse than the air outdoors!*
With each breath we inhale from 40,000 to 75,000 dust particles.
One gram of dust contains 700 million different component particles, which together pose a huge threat to our health. Over the course of evolution our organisms have adapted to fight dust, but today, dust has a totally different structure and is far more harmful. Because of this, the EPA ranks poor indoor air quality among the top five environmental risks to public health!*
- Indoor pollution can be 100 times higher than outdoors
- We spend 90% of our time indoors
- We inhale from 40,000 to 75,000 dust particles with each breath
- Health effects may be experienced years after exposure
* (Source: American Lung Association and 3M survey, 2002)
As long as we are breathing, air pollution will affect us!
We spend up to 90% of our time indoors** - that’s 90% of our time breathing recycled air. Recycling the air, especially in normal ventilation systems, means that dust, molds, bacteria, viruses, cigarette smoke, various chemicals and other toxins are building up, their amounts increasing as the air is reused!
The human body is not designed to combat these invasions of our health!
The effect is slow and silent. We might not experience the true damage done to our bodies until years after exposure! **
** (Source: EPA, 2002)
Health should be treasured not breathed away!
Has breathing become hazardous to our health?
How do we know if we are affected by our environment? What are the signs that our bodies are under attack from the air around us?
Have you ever had headaches or an irritated nose and throat that would not go away? Allergic skin reactions? Dizziness and fatigue, even after a good night’s sleep? These symptoms can be easily ignored or explained away. Over-the-counter medicines, such as aspirin or cold medicine, hide and mask them, keeping us from looking for their cause!
- Persistent cough, conjunctival irritation, headache
- Fatigue, dizziness, allergic skin reaction, weakness
- Asthma onset, frequent upper respiratory infections
How do we know we are being poisoned?
Exposure to solvents, cleaning agents, pesticides, and other volatile organic compounds can cause all of these symptoms, plus nausea, epistaxis, and dyspnea.
Heavy metals in the atmosphere, like lead and mercury vapour, can affect the gastrointestinal tract and cause muscle cramps and tremors, weakness, personality changes, hearing loss… the list goes on!
Biological pollutants, such as animal dander, molds and dust mites can also help spread diseases and infections. Plus they can be a cause of chest tightness, persistent cough, and rhinitis.
Stoves, space heaters, furnaces and fireplaces can also make us ill. Dizziness, headaches, eye irritation, and increased frequency of angina in persons with coronary heart disease, plus many of the other symptoms already mentioned, can be caused by these combustion sources.
Air pollution: a local problem or a global issue?
Observations made by NASA have revealed expansive clouds of carbon monoxide and other air pollutants spreading worldwide.
With this new information, John Gille, head of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, stated that:
"With these new observations, we clearly see that air pollution is much more than a local problem. It is a global issue."
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has declared an "epidemic of polluted air." For more than 20 years the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN Environmental Program have been fighting against polluted air. Billions of dollars have gone into the fight, but the air is still getting worse! What does this mean for us? How can we help ourselves breathe?
- A Global Epidemic: Air Pollution is Spreading Worldwide!
- Our Environment Contains Harmful Chemicals!
- A Local Problem. It’s OUR Air!
The breath of a child should be a breath of life!
Do you live with a smoker?
Environmental tobacco smoke, or second-hand smoke, is just as harmful as smoking itself, if not more so, as smoking itself. Conjunctival irritation, wheezing, snoring, exacerbation of chronic respiratory conditions, heart disease, and cancer are some of the health risks due to second-hand smoke, especially for children!
All of these pollutants have a common result – they irritate and possibly even contribute to the development of asthma. Research in the USA indicates that every ten years, the number of people suffering from asthma increases by 50%!
Asthma accounts for 14.5 million lost work days, and 14 million lost school days for children annually. This amounts to billions of dollars in health care costs per year in the US alone!* Pollutants, and decreasing indoor air quality, can trigger these attacks. It’s not just asthma that is on the rise - allergies and cancer cases are also on the rise, and can be correlated to the decrease in air quality.
Source: MMWR Surveillance for Asthma, March 2002
Can a building be sick?
As technology increases and we build newer and fancier buildings - but with cheaper materials - a new form of illness has been documented.
- Sick Buildings are making us sick – as many as 20% of us each day!
- Because of pollution, every ten years the number of asthma sufferers increases by 50%
- Asthma accounts for 14.5 million lost work days and 14 million lost school days annually!
- Office furnishings emit high levels of toxic fumes!
It is called "Sick Building Syndrome".
High amounts of toxic substances are emitted by flooring, carpets, plastic necessary for their production, furniture, adhesives, paint, varnishes, modern construction materials, synthetic fabrics and many other sources. It is estimated that as many as 60% of the buildings in the United States are affected by Sick Building Syndrome, including the Environmental Protection Agency’s own building!
As many as 20% of workers say their performance is hampered by the symptoms of this syndrome. One–fifth of the workforce cannot function at their full potential due to the low quality of indoor air!
Sick Building Syndrome causes persistent coughs, irritation, headaches, fatigue, dizziness, allergic skin reactions weakness, asthma irritation, respiratory infections… it’s not the buildings that are getting sick – it is the PEOPLE who are getting sick!
Uncontrollable surroundings in our own homes
Uncontrollable surroundings in our own homes.
Many things that make life unpleasant are out of our control. The buildings we live in are sometimes old and filled with mildew and mold. Walls can be crumbling, and dust from old paint and plaster can fill the air.
Maybe you live in a building with many families all making their own "personal" smells. Or you have a big family all living together in a small space, adding to the stuffiness of your home. Different smells can easily invade our personal space. Cooking, cleaning and hygiene habits all add to the "atmosphere" around us.
More and more, our workplaces are becoming international. Germs and microbes from all around the world are being brought together. Different perfumes and scents combine and mix to make a smelly mess.
Plumbing can be old, storage areas musty, and the neighbors keep piling their trash under your windows. A forgotten bag of potatoes in the pantry, or laundry filled with old socks can fill an entire apartment with a horrible stench!
Unpleasant smells tell us when there is something wrong, but we cannot always change the problems.
Plug your nose, or move out?
There are many ways we can try to deal with these unpleasant odors. Unfortunately, most methods only mask the smells. In fact, these "masks" often make the problem worse. They hide the odors by adding toxins and pollution into our homes!
Incense makes it hard for our lungs to function normally, causing headaches and disturbing your sleep. Depending on the ingredients, it can be even worse for our health!
Scented Candles are popular, but they also create soot that adds to dust and dirt, and to the pollutants in the air. Plus, they can produce toxic lead, depending on how they are made. They might smell nice, but the potential hazards to our health make them costly and dangerous!
Spray deodorants only mask the problems in our houses. With so many chemical pollutants in the air already, why would you willingly add even more? In addition, certain aerosols produce chemicals that add to the destruction of an already sick environment!
- Chemical aroma "masks" are a health hazard!
- Soot and smoke give us headaches, make us lethargic, and disturb ourwell-being.
- Odiferous home products and unnatural scents can keep us from sleeping well.