Do Humidifiers Help to Relieve Allergies?

Humidifiers: Great Appliances for Relieving Allergies

How does humidity play an important role in easing allergies?

Allergies can be described as abnormal reactions caused by people’s immune system as they encounter some harmless substances. And now allergy cases have become common in our daily lives. For example, allergic rhinitis can often cause irritation, nasal congestion and inflammation. Apart from the discomfort caused by the allergy itself, taking medicines to control allergic symptoms may also cause other discomfort, such as a dry mouth.

humidifier and allergies, women-ALLERGY
humidifier and allergies

If you have allergies and happen to live in a place where the weather is often changing, you may feel allergic symptoms more strongly. Fortunately, higher levels of humidity in the air can help you breathe more smoothly and delay allergic symptoms, discomfort and the side effects of medicine.

In addition, dust mites (the biggest and most common cause of allergies) can thrive in a house where the humidity of the air is beyond certain minimum levels. So, maintaining a lower humidity in the air can prevent house dust and mold from thriving, which in turn reduces the cause of allergies significantly and can help to avoid asthma induced by perennial or severe allergies.

It’s very clear that humidify levels have great impact on those who suffer from allergies. Not only they help the development of allergies in the first place, they can can affect the treatment of them as well. But any excess of humidity levels is not good for allergies, whether too high, or too low. Too low humidity can lead to great dryness in the air, which causes unhealthy discomfort, while too high humidity in the air is able to cause excessive dampness that encourages mold growth. So the key point is to maintain a balanced level of humidity.

What’s a balanced humidity level? And how is it maintained?

Humidity, usually called relative humidity, is expressed as a percentage to measure the amount of moisture in air. Theoretically, it can range from 0% to 100 %, or higher, but indoor humidity usually fluctuates between 20% and 70%.

Recommended humidity levels
Recommended humidity levels

Generally, how comfortable people feel is partially decided by humidity. When humidity is higher, people feel warmer air at a specific temperature. But when the humidity is lower, people can feel cooler, even when at the same temperature. So it’s better for you to maintain the humidity level of your home higher than 30% in winter, which can help you feel warmer.

We know that high temperatures between 75 ºC to 80 ºC and high humidity from 70% to 80%, provide wonderful conditions for arthropods to thrive, such as bacteria and house mites. And eliminating these arthropods is almost impossible by manual cleaning. But it’s absolutely possible to reduce the quantity of house mites by adjusting the humidity levels. Usually, when humidity levels are below 50%, house dust mites are unable to thrive.

Thanks to modern humidifiers, maintaining a  balanced humidity level has become very easy. Typically, humidifiers include an integral gadget, usually a built-in hydrometer, to measure the humidity of the air. Just turn on your humidifier and regulate the setting between 40% and 48%, and then you can manage the balanced humidity levels in your home. Dust mites will be supressed substantially and you will feel more comfortable.

Choose a good Humidifier

allergies and humidifier
Honeywell Humidifier

There are multiple types of humidifiers on the market. Some can humidify the air of one room, while some can provide adequate humidification for several rooms. Most people prefer point-to-use humidifiers because they are often portable, meaning that they that don’t require installation onto an air conditioning or duct system.

Among all humidifier types, evaporative humidifiers are perhaps the most popular and common ones. This type is generally composed of a water tank, a wick and a filter and generates cool mist, so evaporative humidifiers are also known as cool mist humidifiers.

Noticeably, some humidifiers that do not require filters in order to run may build up minerals in the rooms, because the minerals or dusts that are present in the water can become airborne and sent into the air with mists. So these humidifiers, such as ultrasonic and impeller models, are not good choices for treating allergies.

Choosing the ideal humidifier is critical to maintaining balanced humidity levels easily, but the maintenance of your humidifier also plays a great role in the moisture of the air. In general, the water tank of a humidifier needs to be refilled and cleaned regularly. If your humidifier has a filter, you also need to replace it periodically to prevent mold and bacteria from growing.

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