As winter approaches, it is a great time to be having appliances serviced and checked for problems; as well, ensuring that flues are vented to the exterior and that there are no blockages.
There are many things to be thinking about, and today, I wanted to share this with you to prevent issues, and potentially deaths.
Carbon Monoxide – A Silent Killer
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless gas. It is deadly.
It is a combustion gas and can easily build up in the home.
Another common contributor is car exhaust.
CO Poisoning: Health Effects and Symptoms
CO has an affinity for haemoglobin and thus it easily disrupts oxygen transportation within the body.
- flu-like symptoms
- nausea and vomiting
- confusion and impaired cognitive functioning
- tachycardia (rapid heartbeat)
Heath practitioners need to be alert to CO poisoning mimicking influenza – and include this in their differential diagnosis when the whole household is exhibiting these symptoms.
Steps to Prevent CO Poisoning
- Have all gas appliances serviced annually and checked for faults and defects
- Check the flames – are they blue? Great. Are they yellow/orange? Call your gas company as this is a sign that the gas is nor burning properly.
- Only use gas heaters that are flued and vented to the exterior
- Use the extractor fan when cooking on a gas stove top
- Keep your windows ajar to dilute the indoor air
- Avoid idling the car in the garage or near windows
- If you have a garage attached to your house, be sure to close the door and seal it well, and never idle the car in the garage
- Also, ensure that windows are closed when the car is idled in the driveway
- Avoid opening your windows during peak hour traffic (or school pick up and drop off), especially if you live near a busy road
Prevention is Better Than Cure
#carbonmonoxide #gases #environmentalhealth #buildingbiology #gasappliances