Is your flooring making you sick?

26 03 2008


According to the American Lung Association, most people spend 60% to 90% of their time indoors and 50% of all illnesses are either caused by, or aggravated by, polluted indoor air. New research gives strong evidence that the type of flooring selected can make a big difference in our indoor air quality.

Flooring has the potential to be harmful to our air quality in 2 ways: the collection of endotoxins and through toxic chemical emissions. Endotoxins are bacterial chemicals particularly found indoors.

According to Darryl C. Zeldin, M.D., Senior Investigator at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, “the likelihood of having recent asthma symptoms is nearly 3 times greater among individuals with exposure to high levels of endotoxin in their flooring.”

One way to avoid toxic chemicals is to make sure that you choose flooring that doesn’t use formaldehyde glue or binders and that has been off-gassed in the factory (off-gassing is the name of that “new floor smell” and is a chemical by-product of the manufacturing process). Research has also shown that green buildings have employees with lower turnover rates, fewer sick days and higher productivity; children in green schools demonstrate higher test scores, lower absenteeism, and heightened academic enthusiasm among students.

Choose healthy flooring! To learn more about the health benefits of cork oak visit our website at

Till next week,

Team Wicanders

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One response

31 03 2008
Rob McNealy

I have heard many illness complaints as well from people using acid based finishes on their hardwood floors.

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