Date Published: 02/14/2020 [Source]
Healthy Homes, which is designed to help Kosciusko County families detect any health hazards in their household by pointing out links between home contaminants and homeowner health, is free and available to families of all income levels.
While homes are often viewed as safe havens from the dangers of the world, household contaminants often exist in houses unnoticed. Radon, carbon monoxide, asbestos, lead, pests, asthma triggers, secondhand smoke and allergens are all potentially dangerous threats that are tested for on a Healthy Homes visit.
Radon is of particular concern, as research is now showing that "pockets" of the radioactive gas tend to form within communities. In HOW's initial Healthy Homes run, several pockets were found within Kosciusko County.
At each visit, trained Grace exercise science interns will go to a family's home, perform several tests for toxins and fill out a questionnaire to discover anything that might be adversely affecting a family's health. When a threat is found, HOW works with the family to find solutions, either via home repairs of lifestyle changes.
"We are thrilled to be working on the Healthy Homes project," said Christina Walters, director of exercise science at Grace. "This is the perfect opportunity for students to learn about the community, promote health and wellness, and gain experience in research. Healthy Homes is going to help teach our students about much more than collecting data. The assessments and project goals will provide an experience-based learning environment that will give shape their ability to impact the community they ultimately reside in one day."
In addition to directly helping families detect dangerous substances, all data gathered from Healthy Homes will be compiled into a study that will go to help medical professionals and healthcare advocates; this information will give them gain a greater understanding of the link between home health and personal wellness.