Many of the improvements in health that were made in the 20th century were from improvements in the nation’s housing. Yet poorly maintained housing still exists. Such housing increases the risk for injury and illness, and continues to affect the health of millions of people of all income levels and walks of life.
Some people are affected more than others in terms of health and housing issues. For example, childhood lead poisoning, injuries, respiratory diseases and quality of life issues have been linked to the more than 6 million poorly maintained housing units nationwide. Residents of these units are also at increased risk for fire, electrical injuries, falls, rodent bites, and other illnesses and injuries.
Other issues of concern include exposure to pesticide residues, tobacco smoke and the burning of oil, gas and kerosene, which can release a variety of combustion products, including carbon monoxide, into the indoor air.
Everyone can take actions to protect themselves and their families from health hazards inside their homes.