We’re all trying to be healthier. We exercise more, eat better, and try to get higher-quality rest. These habits are great starts to living happier, healthier lives, but sometimes, despite your best efforts, you still feel sick. The culprit could be something you’d never expect: your own home. Chemical irritants, allergens, and bacteria in your home can cause symptoms ranging from mild irritation to full-blown respiratory problems.
Identifying these contaminants isn’t always easy. A lot of times, they hide in places we’d never think to look. Let’s check out some surprising ways your home could be making you sick so that you can pinpoint the source of your symptoms.
The next time you shower, check your shower curtain liner for small, black spots. If your liner has them, it might be a good idea to throw it out or toss it in the wash. This type of black mold can cause respiratory issues and allergy symptoms, including a runny nose, watery eyes, and coughing. If you notice any other signs of mold in your bathroom, such as a musty smell, it might be time to hire a professional mold inspector. Some levels of mold are safe to live with, but if you have too much of it, it can start negatively affecting your health.
Candles or Air Fresheners
Candles, air fresheners, and incense can mask peculiar smells and make your home smell like honey, the ocean, or anything in between. These items might smell great, but they’re also common irritants. If you’re sensitive to the fumes they create, you can experience allergy-like symptoms, including a runny nose or red, irritated eyes.
Another surprising way your home could be making you sick is something you might find in the kitchen. Neglecting to wash your kitchen towels can lead to a buildup of mold, germs, and even food-borne illnesses. Towels are some of the most contaminated hazards in your kitchen, which makes sense: they touch everything from dirty plates, countertops, and appliances to the floor. Pet owners might even use them on their pets’ food bowls, which are teeming with bacteria, pet allergens, and other harmful contaminants.
Washing your pillowcases on a frequent basis can prevent bugs, dead skin, dust mites, and feces from building up on their surfaces. These lingering contaminants can cause a variety of sicknesses, ranging from the flu to skin infections.