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AirWell Contaminants Health

Indoor Air Can be Host to Toxic Contaminants

Environmental contaminants are everywhere and can originate from the most inconspicuous sources. Health issues arise when the presence of those contaminants becomes too high and it contaminates your indoor air. Whatever you breathe enters your body, including the toxins released by contaminants in your environment, and can deeply affect your health. Additionally, existing illnesses can worsen when exposed to environmental toxins.

The Health Effects of Common Contaminants

Learn about the health effects and symptoms that can be caused by common indoor contaminants.

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Asbestos

Asbestosis

Breathing asbestos fibers can create a scarring of the lungs which will inhibit oxygen and carbon dioxide from passing through. Thus, breathing becomes more difficult. Asbestosis typically requires high levels of exposure over prolonged periods. Asbestosis may not occur for several years after exposure. 

Pleural disease

 A non-cancerous lung condition that causes changes in the membrane surrounding the lungs and chest cavity (pleura). This membrane may thicken throughout (diffuse pleural thickening) or in isolated areas (pleural plaques). Also, fluid may build up around the lungs (known as a pleural effusion). This may result in breathing difficulties or less efficient lung function.

Lung Cancer

Malignant tumor(s) that invade and block the lung’s air passages. Smoking tobacco combined with asbestos exposure greatly increases the chance of developing lung cancer (50x more likely if smoking while breathing asbestos fibers).

Mesothelioma

A rare cancer of the membrane that covers the lungs and chest cavity (pleura), the membrane lining the abdominal cavity (peritoneum), or membranes surrounding other internal organs.  Signs of mesothelioma may not appear until 30 to 40 years after exposure to asbestos.

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Bacteria

Pneumonia

Lung inflammation caused by infection

Wound Infections

Growth and spread of microbes in or on the skin.

Bloodstream Infections

 i.e. – Sepsis

Endotoxins

Toxins produced by some gram-negative bacteria

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Lead*

Mood Disorder

Cognitive decline

Parkinsonism

Cardiovascular Disease

Renal Disease

Respiratory Issues

Reproductive Issues

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Mold

Cancer

Arthritis

Gastric Reflux Disease (GERD)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Allergic Fungal Sinusitis

Chronic Rhinosinusitis

Aspergillosis

Asthma

Brain Fog

Headaches

Migraines

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Sleep Disorders

Muscle Weakness

Restless Legs Syndrome

Systemic Fungal Symptoms

Candidiasis

Yeast Infection

Psoriasis

Hearing Loss

Vertigo & Dizziness

Meniere’s Disease

Fibromyalgia

ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease)

Chronic Inflammatory

Response Syndrome (CIRS)

Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)

Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS)

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Radon

Lung Cancer

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VOCs

Respiratory Issues

Neurological Issues

i.e. – Loss of coordination, Headaches, Brain Fog

Reduced Fertility

Eye, Nose, and Throat Irritation

Nausea

Damage to liver, kidney and central nervous system

Some organics can cause cancer in animals, some are suspected or known to cause cancer in humans.

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Mold Exposure is the Biggest Culprit

Although many different contaminants can lead to sickness, in our experience, indoor mold exposure is the most common. Mold is unique in that it is an allergen (can make you sneeze or cough), it produces toxins (chemicals), and it can be a pathogen (that may infect). Mold can be visible or nearly invisible when it first begins growing on a surface and when the spores are airborne. Although musty smells can indicate mold growth, mold can also grow without creating an odor.

Mold Exposure Can Cause Chemical Sensitivities

Contaminants in our environment can pose a significant health risk, especially to those who are genetically susceptible. Elevated concentrations of mold spores have been known to produce chemical sensitivities. Chemically sensitive people have adverse reactions to a spectrum of synthetic and natural toxins and toxicants found in their environment, including those produced by mold. It is for these reasons that exposure to common disinfectants, biocides, and fungicides can set off chemical sensitivities in mold-exposed individuals. Natural solutions become necessary to help mitigate indoor mold exposure.

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* Crinnion, W., & Pizzorno, J. E. (2019). Clinical environmental medicine: Identification and natural treatment of diseases caused by common pollutants. Elsevier.

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