An Invisible Threat to Indoor Air Quality: Part I – Formaldehyde

An Invisible Threat to Indoor Air Quality: Part I - Formaldehyde

At AirMD, an environmental testing company specializing in indoor air quality testing and building assessments, we know that it’s easy for some of the biggest threats to your family’s health and wellness to sneak up on you. The reason is simple – some of the biggest threats that we test the indoor air quality of your home for are completely invisible airborne gases.

As Simon Hahessy, AirMD’s Founder and Scientific Director, explains, “According to the Environmental Protection Agency, indoor air quality is a greater health hazard than outdoor air pollution with pollutants being up to two to five times higher indoors.”

Gases that Negatively Impact Indoor Air Quality

When conducting a commercial or residential air quality test, there are four principle types of airborne gases that our environmental testing experts screen for:

  1. Formaldehyde
  2. Volatile Organic Compounds
  3. Carbon Monoxide
  4. Carbon Dioxide

Formaldehyde Testing

Formaldehyde is a chemical compound that can be found in the environment and in consumer products.

Your car’s exhaust as well as the output from power plants and incinerators can release formaldehyde and pollute the air. Research, however, has shown that you are more likely to encounter high concentrations of formaldehyde inside your home or workplace. That’s because a number of building materials and household products release the colorless gas, which is used in their manufacture.

You may be surprised to learn how many common products around your home or office contain formaldehyde, including:

  • pressed-wood products, such as particleboard, plywood, and fiberboard
  • glues and adhesives
  • permanent-press fabrics
  • paper product coatings
  • certain insulation materials

“Formaldehyde is also a component of tobacco smoke and both smokers and those breathing secondhand smoke are exposed to higher levels of formaldehyde. One study found much higher levels of formaldehyde bound to DNA in the white blood cells of smokers compared to non-smokers,” the American Cancer Society points out.

Formaldehyde testing is just one aspect of the scientifically based Residential Wellness Air Quality Testing offered by AirMD. If you have concerns about the air your family is breathing, please contact us for more information about our environmental air testing services.

By AirMD | Posted in Indoor Pollutants