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7 Reasons to Consider Indoor Air-Quality Testing

Air isn't as light as it seems. It's pushing on your skin right now with up to 15 pounds of pressure per square inch, a weight so familiar you can't feel it. Your lungs feel it, though, especially when it's bogged down with toxins. And while we tend to think of air pollution as an outdoor threat, it can be even worse inside the buildings where we live and work.

The causes of indoor air pollution vary from region to region, house to house and even room to room. Contaminated air seeps in from outside, but it also wafts up from a smorgasbord of indoor sources like construction materials, consumer products, mold, insects and pets. Poor ventilation can let it accumulate to dangerous levels, a problem that often spikes in fall and winter as we seal up buildings to conserve heat.

Air Pollution Tied to Lung Cancer in Non-Smokers

(Reuters Health) - People who have never smoked, but who live in areas with higher air pollution levels, are roughly 20 percent more likely to die from lung cancer than people who live with cleaner air, researchers conclude in a new study.

"It's another argument for why the regulatory levels (for air pollutants) be as low as possible," said Francine Laden, a professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, who was not involved in the research.

Though smoking is the number one cause of lung cancer, about one in 10 people who develop lung cancer have never smoked.

"Lung cancer in 'never smokers' is an important cancer. It's the sixth leading cause of cancer in United States," said Michelle Turner, the lead author of the study and a graduate student at the University of Ottawa.

Previous estimates of how many non-smokers get lung cancer range from 14 to 21 out of every 100,000 women and five to 14 out of every 100,000 men.