Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Your Home
Carbon monoxide has no smell, it’s invisible and if inhaled in large amounts it is lethal. What makes it even more concerning is the fact that it can silently seep into your home and go completely undetected until you or your loved ones show symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Causes Of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning In The Home
Poorly maintained cooking, heating or ventilation systems in your home can lead to carbon monoxide leakage. Some of the more common sources include:
- Leaking chimneys and furnace/heater systems
- Kerosene heaters
- Fireplaces and wood-burning stoves
- Gas cooking ranges
- All types of generators
- Gasoline fuelled appliances
- Gas heaters
- Fireplaces with poor venting
- Tobacco smoke
Signs And Symptoms Of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide poisoning is a life-threatening medical emergency, depending on the exposure level there may be some immediate short term effects such as weakness, headaches and dizziness which can quickly lead to more serious symptoms like nausea, vomiting and Loss of muscle co-ordination.
Breathing in large quantities of carbon monoxide can lead to unconsciousness and death.
Common Symptoms Include:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Blurred vision
- Shortness of breath
- Loss of muscle co-ordination
- Loss of consciousness
Carbon monoxide poisoning can seriously affect intoxicated or sleeping people and may cause irreversible brain damage or death before you realize there is a problem.
If you or your loved ones show any signs or symptoms, or you are concerned that there may be a carbon monoxide leak in your home get everybody out of the house and into fresh air immediately, call an ambulance or see your doctor to confirm any exposure then have your house tested for carbon monoxide leaks to be certain.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention
To reduce the risk of carbon monoxide in your home, follow these tips:
- Get good quality carbon monoxide detectors for your home
- Never use the fireplace with the flu closed
- Do not leave your car turned on in the garage – even for a short period of time
- Be sure that your wood burning stove doors close tightly
- Maintain all gas appliances and make sure that they are working properly
- Maintain your furnace or other heating system
- Do not use charcoal grills or petrol powered machines indoors