Even the simplest everyday actions can generate toxic particles in our homes. Cooking, painting, keeping pets, and using detergents can leave behind particles that have repercussions to our health. Irritants and allergens at home can have an impact on your daily wellbeing and long term health. It is therefore good to be informed and pay attention to what you use or spray in your home.

Dr. Francesca Puggioni, pneumologist in Humanitas, discussed home pollution as a guest at the studio of Time & Money on Rai 1.


What happens when we breathe the vapors of harmful chemical agents?

” The high and low respiratory tract are certainly affected by irritants in our homes. Also our hands and mucous membranes come in contact with chemicals. Burning and discomfort to the nose as well as watery eyes are often the first symptoms”, says Dr. Puggioni.

“The chemical agents act as surfaces which clean, irritate and burn, making our mucous membranes and airways more susceptible to infection. They create little holes in our barriers (skin, mucous membranes, respiratory tract) and in addition to the symptom that is felt, they can cause infection because viruses and bacteria can penetrate the body. Sometimes some cases of pneumonia are a result of exposure to these fumes. For example, if we mix detergents with hot water, fumes and steam coming from our bucket are very dangerous. Furthermore, you should never mix cleaning agents as you do not know their composition and the mix could be very damaging”.


Allergies to pets

“Before adopting a pet, for the sake of the pet and our own health if we have even the slightest suspicion that there are allergies in the family, it is advisable to undergo an allergy test. If no problems emerge, then you should only take a couple of precautions. Regarding cats, we point out that we arent allergic to cat hair itself but to the allergen of the cat that is in its saliva, of which the hair is only a vehicle. The allergen spreads throughout the house and is always present in the air”.
It is important to be aware and very careful, but do not be alarmed. In fact dr. Puggioni explains “All substances have a risk and a danger but are dose-dependent, homes generally dont have toxic emissions that are severe enough to put us at risk”.