Just about everyone has heard about carbon monoxide poisoning and knows it can be deadly. Fewer people are aware that CO poisoning doesn’t have to be fatal to cause health-related problems. November is Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month, so Merts Heating & Air conditioning wants to be sure you are CO aware.
NON-LETHAL LEVELS OF CO GAS
Recent research shows that long-term exposure to non-lethal levels of carbon monoxide can cause multiple health problems, including but not limited to:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Memory problems
- Rapid heartbeat
- Shortness of breath
HERE IS WHERE THINGS GET TRICKY
Remember, for the purposes of this article we are talking about non-lethal levels of carbon monoxide. I want to emphasize these symptoms can also be early warning signs when the concentration of this odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas is at life-threatening levels. If these symptoms come on suddenly, you should suspect CO poisoning and leave your Steger, IL or Crown Point, IN home immediately.
HOW DO YOU KNOW IF IT’S CARBON MONOXIDE?
Of course, many of these problems can have multiple causes. For now, let’s assume the symptoms have come on slowly and don’t seem to get any worse. How can you tell if they are being caused by carbon monoxide? Start with the obvious. Do the symptoms disappear when you leave your Illinois or Northwest Indiana home? If that’s the case, it’s very likely you are dealing with carbon monoxide exposure or another indoor air quality problem.
PROTECTING YOURSELF & YOUR FAMILY
Protection starts with regular preventive maintenance on your furnace or any other fuel-burning device in the house. It takes a trained professional to diagnose a cracked heat exchanger or improper combustion of fuel, two of the leading causes of CO poisoning.
CARBON MONOXIDE MONITORS & DETECTORS
The best protection against non-lethal CO poisoning is to install carbon monoxide monitors. They measure the concentration of CO gas continuously so that you know whether it’s going up or down and whether the level should concern you. Merts recommends having carbon monoxide detectors, but they are designed to sound an alarm only when the CO gas reaches a life-threatening level. They will not alert you to non-lethal levels that can cause long-term health problems.
TRUST MERTS TO HELP
Please use Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month to make sure you and your family are aware of the health risks associated with this poisonous gas in your Illinois or Northwest Indiana home. If you would like more information or to learn more about the importance of indoor air quality, Merts Heating & Air Conditioning is always available to help. Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to learn more about the services.