The air we breathe influences our entire life.

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Bad air quality has a lot of negative effects on the human body. From headaches, dizziness to fatigue these are some of the side-effects from short term exposure to high levels of CO2, VOC and particles.

Therefore, the air quality is important in your home as well as your workplace. We spend 90 % of our time inside and the air we breathe decides our physical health.[1] Experiencing headaches or dizziness at the end of the day often means that the CO2 levels are too high and the amount of fresh air entering the office is minimal.[2]

Monitoring the air quality is a way of controlling and improve the air we breathe as it affects our entire life. By monitoring the indoor air quality, any adverse effects that stem from humidity, high CO2 and VOC levels can be avoided.[3]

Indoor CO2 concentrations are driven by a combination of outdoor CO2, indoor

CO2 Levels

breathing, and the ventilation rate of the building. As our society and living standards have developed, buildings and homes have become more energy-efficient and airtight; this means we have less fresh air indoors and the CO2 level tends to spike.[4]

Most ventilation we know today, recycle air to conserve energy, essentially moving the contaminated air around rather than cycling in new air. This results in high CO2 concentrations and poor indoor air quality.[5]

According to studies, people have a much harder time learning, performing simple and complex tasks, and making decisions as CO2 levels rise.[6] This is due to the side-effects from the exposure to the high levels of CO2; headaches, dizziness and fatigue.[7]

 

Along with CO2, the VOCs affect the concentration, learning and working process.

Volatile Organic Compounds are a combination of gasses and odour emitted from many different toxins and chemicals found in everyday products.[8]

VOCs is a large group of chemicals that are found in many products we use to build and maintain our homes. Once the chemicals are inside, they are released into the indoor air we breathe. Some of the products that are sources of VOCs are paint, upholstery, air fresheners, cleaning products, smoking, and fragrance.[9]

VOC levelsExposure to a certain level of VOC has some short- and long-term consequences.

Eye, nose, and throat irritation, headaches, and nausea are some of the most common short-term side effects; these are seen when exposed to VOCs for hours or days. The long-term side effects are chronic and acute; comprising cancer, liver and kidney damage, and central nervous system damage. These side effects can be seen when exposed to VOCs for years to a lifetime.[10]

 

 

Human health is furthermore influenced by the humidity in the building we live and work in. Not only will high humidity levels influence our homes/workplace and health, but low humidity levels are now known to help spread infection.[11]

Low humidity and low temperatures have been found to alter the transmitting of infectious disease particles, such as the influenza virus.

Therefore, low humidity and low temperatures have been found to facilitate the spread of infection, thus affecting the immune Temperature and humiditysystem.[12]

The problem with humid air is furthermore problematized for employers who are said to have received an increased report of itchy, watery eyes, headaches, throat irritation, increased heart rate, and fatigue from employees. This was associated with unfavourable heat, humidity, and ventilation conditions.[13]

 

Recent tests show that temperature and humidity go hand in hand. High humidity and temperatures affect the ability to learn and perform at work. The higher the temperature the greater affection for cognitive abilities. This means the ability to take in and work with new information is compromised.[14]

 

Being able to control the temperature in working environments will optimize efficiency at work. Workplaces should make sure that temperature is kept on a comfortable level to make sure the employees can process information at full capacity. In the UK there is no law for minimum or maximum working temperatures, e.g. when it is too cold or too hot to work. However, the guidance suggests a minimum of 16°C or 13°C if employees are doing physical work.

There is no guidance for a maximum temperature limit, employers most stick to health and safety at work law, including:[15]

–       Keeping the temperature at a comfortable level.

–       Providing clean and fresh air.

Humidity Levels

The CO2, VOC and humidity are all particles that are invisible to the human eye but have a great impact on our health.[16]

Particles are tiny bits of solids or liquids suspended in the air. They are a complex group of pollutants that vary in size, shape, composition, and origin.[17]

The particles found in the air are too small to see and therefore the air seems clean.

Particles smaller than 10 micrometres (PM10) and 2.5 micrometres (PM2.5) can settle in the airway and deep in the lungs and cause health problems.[18]

As the world is dealing with COVID-19 it is seen that the CO2 levels have increased in almost every country. This means air pollution is low and the air right now is cleaner than ever. Though this is the coincidence, the PM2.5 particles in the air increase the risk of COVID-19. If there is an increase of only 1 µg/m³ in PM2.5 is associated with an 8 % increase in the COVID-19 death rate. Therefore, it is important to monitor air pollution as it protects human health both during and after the COVID-19 crisis.[19]

We at Welltek think breathing in clean air should be an option for everyone. Therefore, we are offering a selection of air monitoring brands. These will help you monitor the air you breathe and clean it for the better.

The purifiers continuously monitor the indoor air, letting you know when the particles, VOC levels, CO2 levels, temperature and humidity is too high or too low. With this purifier, employees will always be able to breathe in clean air and therefore better the work efficiency.

As mentioned, we spend 90 % of our day inside, this corresponds to 22 hours a day where we breathe more than 10,000 litres of questionable air. With our selection of air monitor brands, we can help you discover your air quality along with improving it for the better.

 

 

[1] Airthings.com “What are VOCs?”

[2] Airthings.com “What is CO2?”

[3] Airthings.com “Everything you need to know about humidity in your home”

[4] Airthings.com “What is CO2?”

[5] OHSonline.com “Carbon Dioxide detection and indoor air quality control”

[6] Airthings.com “What is CO2?”

[7] OHSonline.com “Carbon Dioxide detection and indoor air quality control”

[8] Airthings.com “What are VOCs?”

[9] Airthings.com “What are VOCs?”

[10] Health.state.mn.us “Volatile Organic Compounds in Your Home

[11] Airthings.com “Healthy humidity in your home office”

[12] Airthings.com “Everything you need to know about humidity in your home”

[13] Airthings.com “Everything you need to know about humidity in your home”

[14] Airthings.com “Higher temperatures impact our ability to learn”

[15] Gov.uk “Workplace temperatures”

[16] Projects.iq.harvard.edu “COVID-19 PM2.5”

[17] EPA.gov “Indoor Particulate Matter

[18] Projects.iq.harvard.edu “COVID-19 PM2.5”

[19] Projects.iq.harvard.edu “COVID-19 PM2.5”

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