How bad is indoor air quality when there is smoke outside? The first results are not promising

Smoke hides the skyline in Salt Lake City on August 6th. A new Utah study aims to better understand how poor indoor air quality is related to outdoor air quality standards. (Christine Murphy, Desert News)

Lake Salt City – Experts know that wildfires can lead to health problems.

Utah doctors noticed an increase in respiratory cases last month as California and Oregon fires entered the hive. Even a study released this year shows that hospitalizations during the days of high wildfires are higher than those of other sources of pollution.

But is there one aspect of wildfire that researchers are still working on – how much – and other external pollution – will it end up in your home? This is in response to a new study launched by researchers in Utah Health and University of Salt Lake County in August.

Researchers recently installed air quality monitors in 10 homes of “families at risk” across the Salt Lake Valley. Supervisors have the ability to monitor micronutrients, ozone and radon. The team plans to collect indoor air quality sampling data in early 2022 and compare it to outdoor air quality indicators.

This project will be the first opportunity for a real-time analysis of air quality in the homes of Salt Lake County Green and Healthy Homes participating in Inive TV, where we will receive high quality measurements before and after program interventions and updates. Scott Collingwood, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Utah Health University, said in a statement on Tuesday.

Dr. Daniel Mendoza, an assistant professor of research and an assistant professor of internal medicine at the American Department of Climate Science, said the study was intended to better understand the differences in indoor and outdoor air quality. Since its inception, researchers say that wildfires in California have contributed to unhealthy microorganisms in the home.

That is not surprising. Mendoza previously found that indoor air pollution in government-affiliated laboratories in Tylerville had increased by about 78% during the days of high-intensity wildfires, and indoor air quality by 30% during the winter months. That was published in February in the whole of science fiction.

Mendoza told KSL.com in March to look at how indoor air quality from cooking or dust to indoor air quality – all you can follow in his new study.

“There is a misconception that indoor air quality is very different from outdoor air quality and is always better,” he said in a statement on Tuesday. Unfortunately, activities such as cooking and drying can make indoor air quality worse outdoors. From the wildfires we are currently experiencing, very small particles can work indoors in any small cracks and openings.

Indoor pollutants such as particles and gases can cause shortness of breath, chest tightness, shortness of breath, cough and chest pain, he said.

Meanwhile, the Salt Lake County study begins with researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, concluding another study on indoor air quality associated with wildfires.

Researchers there have found that even when using indoor air quality filtering techniques, the amount of trace elements is three times higher than in wildfire days. However, residents who close their homes and use household cleaning methods are still able to halve the amount of particulate matter in their homes.

The results, published Tuesday in the United States National Academy of Sciences, are based on data collected from more than 1,400 indoor air sensors and many more outdoor air sensors in the cities of San Francisco and Los Angeles.

“It shows that people are taking action to protect themselves when they have information about the smoke coming from their streets,” said Alan Goldstein, a professor of environmental engineering and environmental science, policy and management at the university. , And senior author of the study, in a statement.

The new Utah study is expected to help Salt Lake County leaders find ways to improve indoor air quality for residents.

“Not only do we need to improve the air we breathe, but we also need to understand and improve the air that is most vulnerable in our homes,” said Salt Lake County. In a statement by Mayor Jenny Wilson.

Utah experts say residents can improve indoor air quality without buying air purifier apartments, which can be expensive. Residents are advised to inspect radon, wash bedding and vacuuming regularly, clean mold, fix drains, and use cleaning products that do not contain “hard” chemicals. More tips can be found here.

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