Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas. Given how deadly it is, this is not a good thing. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), carbon monoxide poisonings peak in the winter, with seniors being particularly susceptible. Most of these incidents can be traced back to home heating appliances. Here are some general tips for avoiding carbon monoxide poisoning.

  • Invest in a carbon monoxide detector: Like a smoke detector, these can let you know if carbon monoxide levels rise too far. If your detector is constantly going off, evacuate the area and call for help.
  • Have a technician inspect the house: Once a year, have a technician come and inspect the home to make sure all gas, oil, and coal-burning appliances are in working order. Also, have them check the ventilation system to make sure it’s up to code.
  • Never use power generators or other gas and oil burning devices inside the home: Also, when using them outside, make sure they are not near any windows.
  • Keep vents uncovered: After a snowstorm, check around the outside of the house to make sure all outside vents are open and uncovered by snow.

The general symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include nausea, headaches, and dizziness. These are common issues, but if they tend to get better when leaving the house, then that is a sign that it could be carbon monoxide. Seek treatment immediately if this is true.

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