Wildfire Health & Safety: 4 Ways to Protect Your Family From Smoke, Gas & Particles Caused By Wildfires by Elisa Schmitz


Wildfire Health & Safety: 4 Ways to Protect Your Family From Smoke, Gas & Particles Caused By Wildfires

The wildfires that are raging in Canada are wreaking havoc on air quality throughout North America. Even though the fires are blazing in Canada, many of the United States are dealing with the worst air quality they've ever seen because of the drifting smoke and toxic particles swirling across the continent.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), wildfire smoke is a mix of gases and fine particles that can make anyone sick. People with asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), heart disease, who are pregnant, and children and first responders are even more at risk.

Breathing in this smoke can cause immediate health effects such as coughing, breathing challenges, wheezing, asthma attacks, stinging eyes, scratchy throat, runny nose, painful sinuses, headaches, tiredness, chest pain and a rapid heartbeat, according to the American Red Cross. But there are steps you can take to protect your family and pets from the smoke, gas and particles caused by wildfires. First and foremost, it's key to reduce your exposure to the smoke.

"Wildfire smoke irritates your eyes, nose, throat and lungs. It can make it hard to breathe and make you cough or wheeze. Children and people with asthma, COPD, heart disease, or who are pregnant need to be especially careful about breathing wildfire smoke," according to the CDC website.

Here are four ways shared by the CDC to protect your health and safety during these unprecedented fires:

  1. Keep smoke out of your home: close off rooms from outside air and set up a portable air cleaners or filters to keep the air clean even when it’s smoky.
  2. Reduce smoke exposure by wearing a respirator: A respirator is a mask (such as an N95 or KN95) that fits tightly to your face to filter out smoke before you breathe it in. Wearing the right respirator, and wearing it correctly, is key.
  3. If you have central air conditioning, use high efficiency filters to capture fine particles: If your system has a fresh air intake, set the system to recirculate mode or close the outdoor intake damper.
  4. Protect yourself against ash when outside: Wear masks, gloves, long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and shoes and socks to protect your skin. Wear goggles to protect your eyes. Wash off any ash that gets on your skin or in your eyes or mouth as soon as you can.

Read more about how to protect yourself during wildfires and how to protect yourself after a wildfire on the CDC website.

Note: Use of this material, including any links to the materials on the CDC, does not imply endorsement by CDC or the United States Government of 30Seconds, and the material is available on the agency website for no charge.

Note: 30Seconds is a participant in the Amazon affiliate advertising program and this post contains affiliate links, which means we may earn a commission or fees if you make a purchase via those links. The content on 30Seconds.com is for informational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. The information on this site should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, and is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your personal healthcare provider. The opinions or views expressed on 30Seconds.com do not necessarily represent those of 30Seconds or any of its employees, corporate partners or affiliates.

Take 30 seconds and join the 30Seconds community, and follow us on Facebook to get inspiration in your newsfeed daily. Inspire and be inspired.

Related Products on Amazon We Think You May Like:

30Second Mobile, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Air Filters
Air Filters $10 & Up
Air Purifiers
Air Purifiers $25 & Up
N95 Face Masks
N95 Face Masks $10 & Up
Goggles
Goggles $5 & Up

When Wildfires Rage: 4 Mindful Tips to Uplift Your Family During Unprecedented Wildfires

The Danger of Flood Waters: What You Need to Know About the Health Risks From Flooding

14 Ways to Reduce Indoor Air Pollution: Easy Habits to Bust the Everyday Dust in Your Home

Healthy Lung Month: Here Are 4 Easy Ways to Protect Your Lungs & Keep Them Healthy

Cassiday
So scary. We’re getting the smoke by us even though we live nowhere near Canada. Great tips.
Elisa Schmitz
We were in Minnesota as they were experiencing their worst air quality ever recorded. Let's hope these tragic fires come to an end and everyone can breathe easily again!
bepositive
These wildfires aren’t going away so we’re going to need these tips for a long time thank you.

join discussion

Please login to comment.

recommended tips

Skip the Potato Chips: How to Prep So You Grab Healthier Snacks!

The Health Benefits of Cinnamon: Why You Need to Sprinkle This Spice on Everything

Relax About Flax: Simple Ways to Add Flax Seeds to Your Diet!

A Toast to Tea Time: Possible Health Benefits of Drinking Green Tea!