Are these 6 dangerous health hazards in your home?

There are an innumerable number of potential hazards in Australian homes and as leading home builders on the Sunshine Coast and in Perth, we do our best to build safe and healthy homes for our customers.

There are however, measures that home owners can take themselves to reduce these hazards in their home, once you know that they exist.

NOTE: These hazards can even exist in new homes unless the builders are aware of them and take measures to prevent or limit them as much as possible. Thompson Sustainable Homes are committed to building homes that are sustainable, energy efficient and healthy for our customers.

6 Potential hazards in your home

1. Allergens

These allergens can come from dust and dust mites, as well as pets and pollens. In the past 25 years, the incidence of allergies has doubled in western countries and scientists are at a loss to explain this phenomenon (Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy).

Health statistics reveal a disturbing story:

  • Peanut allergies have more than doubled in the past 5 years.
  • 1 in 4 children now have asthma.
  • Hospital admissions for anaphylaxis, which is a potentially life threatening allergic reaction, have increased by 700%.

An allergy is an abnormal, overreaction of the body’s immune system to a substance which under normal circumstances is harmless and most authorities agree that environmental factors play a major role in asthma.

2. Chemicals

These can include chemicals from pesticides, building materials and paints, and household furnishings, as well as personal care and cleaning products. These volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are responsible for much of the indoor air pollution commonly found within a home. As a Perth, Brisbane and Sunshine Coast builder, we make sure that all our building materials are VOC free, so that our clients have a healthy home.

3. Drinking Water

This includes bore or well water, bottled water, tank water and tap water. The quality of our drinking water is something that most of us take for granted, but can we afford to be so complacent in our own home?

Australians often brag that they have one of the cleanest drinking water supplies in the world and theoretically this assumption is correct, but only if you drink from protected forest catchment areas. As this is not permitted in Australia, the chemicals that are consequently added to ‘purify’ our water and the hundreds of kilometres of pipes through which it must travel, affect the quality of water that ultimately comes out of your tap.

3. Toxic Gasses

Combustion gases such as carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides and sulphur dioxide produced from gas appliances and non-flued gas heaters are a serious health hazard within our homes. New energy efficient homes are most at risk, because if passive ventilation is compromised, these gases can build up to levels that could cause serious health problems, such as asthma. At Thompson Sustainable Homes, we make sure that all of our house and land packages in Queensland and West Australia are free from toxic gases and focus on optimising passive ventilation.

4. Lead Dust

Lead paint is responsible for the majority of childhood lead poisoning and up to the 1950s, Australian paint could contain as much as 50% lead! This percentage was eventually reduced to 0.1% in 1997, where it currently stands; many of these paints are marketed as ‘lead free’. As ecologically aware builders in Queensland and West Australia, all of the paint we use, both inside and outside your home is lead free.

5. Mould

Mould is fungus that grows in homes under the right conditions of dampness, darkness and poor ventilation: e.g. bathrooms or kitchens, cluttered storage or basement areas, flooded areas, plumbing pipes and outdoors in humid environments. In addition, walls, timber, carpet, furniture and fabrics can harbour mould if they stay damp for extended periods of time.

Children are very susceptible to the adverse health effects of mould as their lungs and immune systems are still developing. At Thomson Sustainable Homes, we make sure that all of the damp proofing and ventilation in our Perth and Queensland house and land packages is perfect, so that your family is kept safe at all times.

6. Germs

A lot of bacteria is beneficial to us, for example they play an integral role in our digestion, in our immune system and in reducing the development of allergies (this is not surprising given that 70% of our immune system exists in the gut). So why has our society become so obsessed with eliminating germs? Obviously, this obsession is because there are some bacteria that need to be avoided in the home, including E. Coli (found in faeces), Salmonella (raw meat, eggs and dairy) and Listeria (soft cheeses, dairy and raw food).

Keeping your family healthy is a top priority and at Thompson Sustainable Homes we make sure that all of the building materials used in your Queensland and West Australian house and land packages are environmentally friendly and free from toxins.

To contact Thompson Sustainable Homes – the leading West Australian and Queensland builders of healthy, energy efficient and toxin free homes, call us on 1300 90 40 40.

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