Home Health & Personal Care
of carbon monoxide poisoning
Each year, 300
people will lose their life to carbon monoxide poisoning.
Carbon monoxide is also known as the "silent killer".
It is odourless, tasteless, and you can't "tell"
if you have carbon monoxide in your home unless you own a
special carbon monoxide detector.
is produced by burning any type of fuel. Most common sources
of carbon monoxide in the home are:
- oil furnace
- gas furnaces
- gas water heaters
- gas ranges and
- gas ovens
- gas dryers
- gas or kerosene
- using charcoal
- wood stoves
- Vehicles left
running in a garage
For your family's
safety, you should have your heating appliances inspected
by a trained or certified professional at the beginning of
every heating season. Make certain that the flues and chimneys
are connected, in good condition, and not blocked.
The symptoms of
carbon monoxide poisoning are often confused with the flu
or food poisoning, another reason why it is important to have
a working carbon monoxide detector.
At moderate levels
of carbon monoxide in your home, you or your family can get
severe headaches, dizzy spells, mentally confused, nauseated,
or faint. Even at moderate levels, you can die if exposed
to these levels over a period of time. Low levels can cause
shortness of breath, mild nausea, and mild headaches. There
could also be long term health effects from carbon monoxide
If you suspect
you make have carbon monoxide poisoning, get fresh air immediately.
Open your doors and windows if it takes you a minute to gather
up the kids, and leave the house immediately. Do not return
until all possible causes of the carbon monoxide poisoning
have been checked by a trained professional.
Go to the emergency
room at your local hospital, and tell them (and the addmissions
nurse) that you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon
monoxide build up remains in your system even after you are
no longer exposed, and you can still die.