Why drying clothes indoors on a radiator is BAD for health
Washing clothes is something that practically everyone does. But what do most people do when they take them out of the machine? A lot of them will simply leave it to dry on a radiator. Wow… how convenient; isn’t that what radiators are meant for? Drying out clothes and keeping you warm? Well, in this post, you’ll learn why drying clothes indoors on a radiator is so bad for you. If this is something you often do… you may consider stopping. But that’s up to you really. In the first part, we’ll discuss the dangers of drying clothes indoors. Then after you’ll learn some other sources of indoor pollution. Now, if you’re reading this, then I assume you have somewhere you call “home.” So, it’s very important for you to be aware.
Stop drying your clothes on the radiator
Let us get straight to it. You see, drying clothes indoors on a radiator creates moisture. Now, it might not seem like a big deal at first. But this humidity actually provides a breeding ground for mould growth. There’s one particular type of mould called Aspergillus. This mould is quite common in domestic places and most prevalent during autumn/winter. Inhaling this mould can lead to a health condition known as Aspergillosis. Now, most people won’t develop any issues at all. That’s because their immune system is strong enough to defend against it. But, people with a weakened immune system are likely to develop symptoms. The same goes for people with lung problems like asthma or cystic fibrosis.
Aspergillosis can display itself in various forms. This includes short breath, mucinous coughing, weight loss and high body temperature to mention a few. If it’s not treated, it can even become fatal. This is particularly true when the mould spreads throughout the blood to vital organs. Once again, it can become life-threatening to those with very weak immune systems. Asthma UK has revealed mould/fungi being a trigger for over 40% of asthmatics.
So, to avoid any of this, it’s actually healthiest to dry your clothes outdoors. However… you can’t always do that. Just think through it for a moment. Would you really want to do that if it was raining outside? Definitely not. If you’re drying clothes indoors, keep them in a well-ventilated place. For example, opening a window will allow in a natural airflow. This will not only reduce humidity but also help the clothes dry out faster. If you have the money, just get a heated drying rack or tumble dryer instead. This might actually be the best “indoor” option really.
Use candles wisely
In this section, we’ll look at another source of indoor air pollution. However, this isn’t as widespread as the drying of clothes. It’s simply the use of candles at home. Now, it could be for a party, Christmas or whatever, it doesn’t matter. Burning candles and even using incense can negatively affect the quality of air in your house. Oh… and they can be detrimental to health too, and you’ll soon know why. This is because they give off volatile organic compounds (VOCs). These are basically particles which are released from solids and then turn to gases. The main VOC sources are burning fuels (eg coal, natural gas) and various consumer products. Among them are paints, solvents, air fresheners, disinfectants/cleaners, fragranced candles and cigarettes. There are much more, obviously, but those are just common examples.
Now, there are two main ways via which VOCs get into the body. The first is by inhalation. For example, by breathing in fuel emissions, cigarette smoke (direct or passively) etc. The second is by direct contact. That’s if your skin directly touches a material which emits VOCs. There are many long- and short-term health consequences of VOC exposure. But among them, and most notable is their link to asthma. VOCs can trigger asthma attacks in both adults and children. It also puts adults at higher long-term risk of heart disease. Luckily, there are certain measures you can take to guard against this.
Protect yourself against VOCs
The first and most obvious is to limit the use of candles and incense. In my opinion, that’s pretty easy really because they aren’t things you often use. The second thing is to not use them in a compacted space. I’ve seen housemates put multiple incense sticks in the bathroom! Not a great idea. So, avoid lighting candles in a tight/cramped up space if possible. I know it seems cosy, but it’s simply not worth it. The third and final tip is to open your windows after using candles or incense. Even if it’s just for 5 minutes or so. This will really help to reduce the concentration of VOCs in the home.
Keep the air fresh at home
There are many things you can do to keep the air in your home fresh and healthy. Here are some final tips:
OPEN YOUR WINDOWS: The first is to open your windows for about 10 minutes/day. This will help reduce humidity and keep common areas clean. I personally open my room window whilst taking a shower first thing in the morning. This is really good because it freshens up your room right from the start. Your room will also feel clean and healthy when you come back.
CLEAN YOUR WINDOWSILLS: Ever woken up to find water condensation around the windows? Yes, this happens a lot, especially during the cold season. But, if you don’t do anything about it, mould will start to grow from it. So, make sure you wipe your windowsills to remove any moisture/condensation.
WIPE YOUR BATHROOM WALLS: This is pretty much related to the previous point actually. A wet wall surface is a potential breeding ground for mould. That’s why you’ll sometimes see mould in the bathroom. Luckily, there’s a sneaky way to get around this. Simply wipe the tiles on the wall after taking a shower. Yes, a majority of people don’t even think about it. But simply taking two minutes or so to wipe water from the wall makes a huge difference. Just try it yourself and see.
USE AN EXTRACTOR: If you’re someone who doesn’t cook, then this won’t be relevant to you. But if you love cooking like me (lol), then take note of the following. Cooking food, especially in a confined space, can lead to the build-up of moisture. Moisture build-up then leads to mould as you already know. So, try and use your extractor fan whilst cooking. It will also help to remove any unwanted smell too. If you don’t have an extractor, then try opening up a window whilst cooking.
REMOVE ANY MOULD: Lastly, look around your house. Is there any mould growing? If there is, you need to clean it out. Don’t allow it to accumulate and carpet the wall.
The above tips should make it easy to prevent mould growth in your home. That, in turn, will result in cleaner air overall. As you can see, they are things that almost anyone can do. As always, just look out for signs of mould growth and act early.
This post might have surprised you a bit!! But don’t worry… you’re now better informed than previously. The main message to go away with is simple. Drying clothes indoors on a radiator isn’t exactly good for your health. Neither is the excessive use of candles. So, if you’re someone who loves drying their clothes on a radiator, then you need to make a U-turn. At least for your own good health. Please comment below and share, share, share!!