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Ten things that build a Healthy Home

“Let there be light!” The Creator regarded ‘light’ as the foremost pre-condition for a place to be habitable. The paramount role of light in making a place livable is incontrovertible. And yet, where do we place it as a factor in designing our ideal home, today? An indispensable link exists between health and dwelling. An ideal modern home is a “healthy home”, but what factors make a home healthy? While a home is built on love and care, on a purely practical premise, there are a host of factors as well. It is the sum total of all these elements put together that leave a lasting impact on the built environment, and therefore, on making a home 'healthy'. Let us take a look at Ten Factors that lead to a “Healthy Home”...

Often, in the quest for constructing the perfect house, one misses out on building a 'healthy home'. A modern healthy home is designed to be safe, aesthetically beautiful and efficient in terms of energy, resources and cost. The internal environment is visually, thermally and acoustically comfortable. There are elements that contribute to achieving these intangible benefits and enhancing the value of the built environment. Here are 10 critical factors that show the way to a healthy home...

 

1. Light

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A modern design does not have to divorce your home from surroundings. Artificial lighting has to supplement but not replace daylight in your home. With efficient windows using performance glass and an advanced lighting design, you can reduce the need for artificial lighting and let in maximum daylight into your home, without the glare and thermal stress. Daylight should enter a room from more than one direction. A generous amount of light is known to boost productivity, make rooms look spacious and enhance the look and feel of interiors.

 

2. Ventilation

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Your home should be prudently designed to allow maximum natural ventilation and ensure that the indoor air quality is maintained. All living rooms and bedrooms should have a minimum of two openings and where that is not possible, the doors need to have openings for internal ventilation. Roof vents and high ceilings should be constructed to allow the stale air to escape. 

 

3. Acoustic Insulation

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80 dB is the average noise level of outside traffic in cities. Whereas inside a home, the WHO guidelines recommend noise level less than 30 A-weighted decibels (dB(A)) for quality sleep. Clearly, our homes need to be equipped with insulation to keep away distracting sounds. Choosing the right acoustic insulation technique for walls, ceilings and floors, and installing laminated glass panes with special acoustic PVB layer, effectively help this purpose and improve tranquility within homes.

 

4. Materials Used

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Many building materials contain chemicals (called VOCs or volatile organic compounds) that are harmful for human health and can be released into your home. Be it on walls or floors, materials which have low VOC content, are non-combustible and need low-maintenance are intelligent choices that help create a healthy home. Lacquered glass as a material for wall-cladding effectively fulfills these criteria. Glass panes in your home should give protection from the harmful UV rays of the sun. A glass with low UV radiation also prevents the home upholstery from damage.

 

5. Kitchen

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The family that eats together stays together! It is not just the food from your kitchen that affects your health, but the kitchen itself does.  A judiciously designed kitchen is an essential part of a healthy home. All gas appliances in your kitchen should have a flue to the outside. The electrical layout should help avoid the contact of water with electrical appliances. Materials used in the interiors should be easy to clean and hygienic, which makes glass an ideal choice. A lacquered glass is moisture and scratch resistant, and a contemporary way of adding glamour to the kitchen.

 

6. Security

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A home is where one feels a sense of belonging and therefore has to make one feel secure. Stringent security measures are to be implemented to ensure this. The front door should be fitted with a peep hole that provides 180 degree unobstructed view of outside. Glass panels adjacent to the front door should be laminated.

 

7. Safety 

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Your interiors may be modish or vintage, but do they have any parts with sharp edges which may hurt someone, especially a child? The safety inside a home is as crucial as the security outside. Smooth-surfaced handrails should run along the entire length of staircases and around immediate landings for safety. Balcony Handrails and Balustrades present an extremely high standard of aesthetic appearance when built with glass. It is also integral that the glass in these applications is laminated to ensure the safety of the occupants and the persons in the vicinity of your home.

 

8. Storage

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A healthy home is one that is clutter-free and has a place for everything and everyone. Storage spaces should be provided in each bedroom, bathroom and in the kitchen and laundry area. Storage areas need to be well-lit. Storage need not be designed only for utilitarian purposes, but could be the face of the aesthetic appearance in your home. Lacquered glass, as the fascia for your cupboards and closets make the cupboards easy to clean, hygienic and have the premium appearance. Adequate storage provisions definitely go a long way in de-stressing inhabitants.

 

9. Accessibility

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Easy access into and out of a home is vital. Stairways should be well-lit and divided into short flights. All doors should be locked alike and the main exit path should be unobstructed for swift evacuation. High threshold levels of doors may pose tripping risks.

 

10. Strength

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A home is for a lifetime. Hence it has to be resilient enough to withstand the vagaries of nature and be able to adapt to different climatic changes. Punctilious design of key components helps ensure longevity of your home.

 

Constructing a healthy home is a concerted endeavor to bring together elements of nature, sustainable resources and prudent man-made design. A synergy of these 10 factors will contribute to not just healthier homes, but more importantly, happier lives. 

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