Everything you need to know to protect yourself from Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
What is Carbon Monoxide?
Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odourless, colourless, tasteless gas that can be deadly. It can be produced from a number of sources such as automobile exhaust, woodstove, and natural gas/propane filed equipment that is not operating properly or adequately vented.
In the Province of Ontario, it is the law to have a CO monitor installed and working properly in your residence.
What are the symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
If CO is inhaled, it depletes the amount of oxygen in your red blood cells and this will result in specific symptoms. Depending on the amount inhaled and the length of exposure, symptoms may include the following:
- At low concentrations: slight headache and/or shortness of breath during moderate physical exercise.
- At higher concentrations: severe headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, confusion, weakness, blurred vision, collapse, fainting, loss of muscle control, and drowsiness.
- At extreme concentrations: Unconsciousness, brain damage, death.
How do I know if there is Carbon Monoxide in my home?
An important thing to always remember is that you cannot see, taste, or smell carbon monoxide, which makes it something to always be cautious of. However, there are some signs that carbon monoxide may be in your home that you should be aware of.
- Stuffy, stale, or smelly/acrid air.
- If you have already taken steps to reduce moisture production and water condensation is appearing on your window. This could also mean the humidifier is set too high.