Tips to Keep Your Family Safe From Wildfire Smoke

• Check the air quality on the official AirNow fire and smoke website or app. Crowd-sourced sites such as Purple Air and IQAir can also provide useful data if there are sensors closer to your home.

• Avoid strenuous outdoor activity when the air quality is moderate or worse, and limit time outdoors when it veers into unhealthy ranges, especially for sensitive groups including young children and pregnant women. If you experience symptoms such as coughing or burning eyes and throat, retreat indoors regardless of what air quality monitors say.

• Wear a mask outdoors. While cloth masks may filter out some particulate matter, N95 masks are superior and are more readily available than last summer and fall.

• If you do venture out in poor air quality, shower when you return inside.

• Protect indoor air quality by using an air purifier. If you live in a house with leaky, older windows, you may be able to create a better seal with masking tape. If it is challenging to maintain good air quality throughout the house, consider creating a “clean room.” The Environmental Protection Agency has instructions here.

Janine DeFao is an associate editor at Bay Area Parent.