Updated: Sep 10, 2021
A minute ago, I emerged from a north-facing room to make a late lunch and discovered it’s too, too smoky in the kitchen and living room. I had the instant sensation that I was eating smoke—it’s a very strange and scary experience, and not at all satisfying. ;)
Tiny smoke particles easily enter through the smallest airspaces around windows, doors and electrical outlets. To reduce smoke entry, I've tucked towels into the bottoms of almost every door. I’ve also sealed off two especially leaky doors with blue painter's tape and I plan to do the same with some of the windows.
Two afternoons ago, a wildfire began west of us and rapidly spread north. This is the 3rd wildfire this summer to threaten homes and ranches in my area. In fact, I'm still packed from last month's Patton Meadow fire.
Yesterday morning, Vern and I received a Level 1 Evacuation Warning, meaning watch and pray while packing. This photo taken of our home, a few hours later, shows the horribleness of it.
Since every imaginable necessity and treasure is safely tucked into moving boxes and bags, we're using this time to make sure we have every item that's truly precious to us ready to fly out the door. Suddenly, a lot of things aren't important or wanted. They're in a donation stack for a local charity.
The amount of smoke inside my house today is unbelievably terrible. The wind has blown it through every little crack. Until moments ago, my Levoit air purifier was in the (mostly) smoke-proof bedroom with me. Appropriately nicknamed, "The Smoke Eater," it's now in the living room running on its highest setting. I'll wait in my small, sealed-off space for the "smoke eater" to rid the air of smoke particles and to amaze me like it has amazed me during other indoor air quality crises.
For the rest of this letter, I'm going to share with you what I've learned from doctors to prevent your lungs and health from being harmed for wildfire smoke. I feel the importance of this and I hope that you do, too. Is there someone who has been in an area of a lot of wildfire smoke that you're concerned about? Sharing this information with them can truly help.
Please take care of your health. Breathing wildfire smoke can weaken the immune system and you need your immune system at top performance right now. A robust immune response in those who contracted Covid prevented them from being hospitalized and worse. Also, smoke inhalation can lead to asthmatic conditions, COPD or cancer.
What to Do for Your Health When You Live or Work Where There’s Wildfire Smoke
· Drink 10-14 eight-ounce glasses of water a day to keep your respiratory tract moist and to wash smoke particles from your throat.
· Your immune system is working extra hard to clear away toxins that are in the smoke. Give it some support by eating foods rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients, like those that you get from raw fruits and vegetables, lightly steamed vegetables, and freshly made juices.
· Take quality supplements to support your immune system.
· Cleanse your nose with a Neti pot filled with purified, warm water.
· Run a humidifier or put a pot of water on the stove to add some moisture to the air. This moistens your mucus membranes, making it harder for smoke particles to adhere to them.
· Sleep 7-9 hours each night, because sleep is the fountain of youth and rejuvenation. Your body does most of its healing and restorative work while you sleep.
· Use an air purifier that is tested and proven to remove wildfire smoke from the air. Avoid purifiers with Ozone. It's a toxin. Go with a purifier that has 3 filters, including a certified HEPA filter and a charcoal filter. An expensive purifier isn’t necessarily a better purifier. Here's an affiliate link for the air purifier that I use. It's currently in stock and on sale. https://amzn.to/3jVFG36
· For houses that are not air tight: use painters tape along cracks and crevices. It goes on easy and it comes off without leaving sticky residue or harming surfaces. Also, towels and blankets are perfect smoke stoppers when placed along the bottoms of doors.
Now that my “smoke eater” has purified my home’s air, I’m heading back to the kitchen to whip together a big salad with the lettuce, cucumbers and beets that I picked this morning from the garden.
If you're in an area with smoke, as much of the west is, remember that you have two lungs and neither are replaceable. Care for them and they will care for you.
God bless and keep you safe,