More Danger than Discomfort: Health Risks of a Cold House
Winter is here, and we’re all starting to feel the chill enter our homes. After a few months of trying to find ways to cool the house down, we now have to find ways to heat it up! For some, it’s as easy as turning the central heating up. For others, they have to use a few clever life hacks to keep themselves warm. Whatever the case, it’s essential that you do warm the house up.
There are a lot of people out there who don’t focus so much on keeping the house warm. They are content to put on a few extra layers and stay warm that way. This sort of approach does make a lot of sense in a way. Some may accuse them of not being practical enough – after all, how hard is it to turn the heating on? But many of these people are more concerned about saving some money by not having the heating on! There’s also the environment to think about, which is becoming an increasing concern for many people.
But there is a problem with this approach. The fact is that a cold house actually carries quite a lot of risk with it. You may think that warming yourself up with extra layers will prevent you from “catching a cold”. But a cold environment doesn’t in and of itself cause colds! The health risks associated with a cold house actually go beyond that of the risk of the common cold.
The World Health Organization have weighed in on this. They say that the minimum indoor temperature should be 18°C, or about 64 degrees Fahrenheit. If an indoor environment drops below this, then problems can start to emerge. One of the most common is the spreading of damp. You may not think that damp in the home is that big a problem. You may think that the worst it can do is ruin your walls. But damp leads to the breeding of a lot of pathogenic bacteria. It’s what eventually leads to a mold problem. This can create respiratory problems. If your immune system isn’t strong, this could lead to very uncomfortable illnesses.
You’ve also got to think about the health of your plumbing. Temperature can affect the pipes in your home more than you may think. In general, these pipes can handle very hot temperatures. But in very cold temperatures, things can start to go awry. Freezing pipes become a common problem in households with below-optimum temperatures. This causes damage to the pipes, which affects how they function. This can lead to dirty water, or waste not being taken away from the home correctly.
So the issue is more dangerous than you may think. It’s not just a case of discomfort. If you’re having trouble heating your home, you should really think about solving the problem. Double glazing is a popular solution for homes that find their heating system isn’t enough. There are other insulation solutions that people look to, such as additional wall insulation. This, of course, is because the heat can escape from the house easily if it’s not properly insulated. If your heating is on the fritz, don’t ignore the problem. Get it fixed!