Breathing is a seriously important business, and one which many of us take for granted.
Over the course of the average day, each of us inhales more than ten thousand litres of air. This air is obviously essential to life – but clearly not all air is created equally. If we don’t get air of the required quality, it follows that we’ll be unable to live our lives quite to the fullest.
Fortunately, the modern world affords us access to technology which can get keep the air in your indoor environment as clean as possible. Let’s examine some of the reasons we might wish to make such an investment.
Breathing is an unconscious action which sucks large volumes of air. The lower the concentration of oxygen in the air, the more of it you’ll need to imbibe in order to get the same benefit. The dirtier the air in the home, the more you’ll need to breathe to get the same amount of oxygen. While the proportion of the air made from oxygen is enormous when compared to the proportion made from pollutants, this effect is still appreciable as it will force you to breathe in more dirty air. If the air is clean, on the other hand, you’ll be able to get the oxygen you need with relative ease.
You might think that, if you spend most of your time out of the house, you’ll get minimal benefit from home climate control. After all, when you’re asleep, you’ll breathe less – and you won’t notice any loss of air quality in the same way you might whilst you’re awake. But this thinking is slightly flawed; while we might experience slowed breathing during most of our sleeping time, for the all-important REM stage of sleep, our breathing actually accelerates a point that’s comparable to a waking state. Since this stage of sleep is most crucial to our actual recovery, air quality becomes essential to creating the best possible sleeping environment.
While the precise effects air pollution has on long-term health are difficult to identify, we can be certain that it’s correlated with a reduction in overall lifespan and quality of life. The consequences of indoor air pollution are thought to include headaches, allergies, asthma, rashes and sinusitis – but with the help of a good ventilation system, each of these problems can be avoided.
Elimination of Allergens
If you’re unfortunate enough to suffer from an allergy, then clean air becomes even more important. Certain allergens, including dust, dander, spores, pollen and tiny pieces of insect, are common in homes – and they’ll happily float through the air before eventually leaving a film of dust on available surfaces. While these allergens are airborne, they can be inhaled, which will provoke allergic symptoms.
We can guard against this by regular maintenance of the interior – both by vacuum-cleaning dusty services, and by cleaning the air with a suitable air conditioning system. The filtration part of an air conditioner will remove large particles of allergen before recirculating the newly-cleaned air. Just be sure to regularly clean these filters to ensure the best possible performance in the long run.
As well as directly cleaning the air in your home, an air-conditioning system will ensure that it’s kept at a suitable level of humidity. This effect this has on the subjective experience for the occupant will be startling. We’ve all at one point or another been trapped in a space where the air is oppressively humid; it feels hot, sticky and uncomfortable. This is because the skin gets rid of excess heat through sweat – warmth is transmitted away from the body via sweat. But if the surface of the skin is already saturated with moisture, this process becomes a great deal less efficient, and so staying cool becomes problematic. If you’re trying to concentrate on a piece of work, or drift off to sleep, then this effect might be especially troublesome.
Extra moisture can also have indirect negative consequences. It might lead to your skin becomes irritated, or to your hair becoming frizzy. It might enable mould to grow, and present a favourable environment for household pests like dust mites, ticks and fleas. It’s the damp that can pose the greatest threat to a home, however, and so regulating humidity is great way of preserving the building in the long run.
There are a number of activities in a home which might create a smell. Whether this smell be initially pleasant or unpleasant is largely irrelevant; given enough time, any smell will become unwelcome. No matter how pleasant the cod curry you cooker on Monday might have smelled, if that smell is still lingering in the air by Friday, you’ll probably be sick of it – and your house guests will likely hold an even lower opinion, even if they don’t go out of their way to appraise you of it.
If you’re trying to get something done, then you’ll find the stink of some bad odour or other to be distracting, bringing about headaches and other focus-reducing side effects. But perhaps more importantly than that, bad odours are worth tackling – and proper ventilation is an excellent way to ensure they don’t have a chance to develop in the first place.
Clean air is Inherently Better
Furthermore, leaving aside any health benefits, clean air is simply more enjoyable to breathe. Given the choice, who’d want to breathe dirty air that smells bad and stings your eyes? Even if there difference between dirty and clean air is only minor, it’ll be a difference you’re sure to notice over the long term – which makes investing in adequate ventilation worthwhile all by itself.
If you’re looking for a way to improve the air quality in your home, then a decent ventilation system is a natural weapon of first resort – it’ll immediately remove any troublesome, recurring odours from the air, and help to keep you refreshed and invigorated from the moment you wake – and, in fact, for hours beforehand.