Friday, 22 December 2017

Is Your Air Conditioner Making You Sick?

Most of us are extremely thankful for air conditioning – especially those who live in California where high temperatures make it a necessity and not a luxury. That being said, there is a downside to air conditioning that many people are not aware of in terms of health issues. The causes are usually simple and so too are the solutions if you know what needs to be done. These are a few of the most common of them and the fixes.

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Breathing Problems

The stuffiness you feel in your nose or the congestion in your chest may not be simply due to having the temperature set too low. It could be due to the fungi and bacteria that have collected in the air conditioner filters and are being blown around the interiors. Air conditioning units are also high moisture environments that are a breeding ground for black mold. Inhaling the bacteria, fungi or mold can cause all kinds of respiratory problems which, if not dealt with in time, could become serious.

The solution to this problem is a very simple one – ensure that the unit is cleaned regularly and air filters are changed on schedule.

Fatigue, Headaches and Feeling Low

Many people find that after spending a full day in an air conditioned environment they tend to feel more tired than normal and often have headaches or a feeling of general fatigue. Studies have shown that a common cause for this is having the temperature set too low which places an unnatural strain on the metabolism.

The fix is to turn the thermostat up a bit. If that does not help, have it checked by an expert. If it is defective, the room may over cool no matter what the setting is.

Dry Skin and Nasal Passages

The cold dry air that an air conditioner produces causes the natural oils of the skin to dry up and this leads to dry skin and soreness of the nostrils. The more time you spend in an air conditioned room the drier your skin gets.

You  can prevent this from happening by drinking lots of liquids while in an air conditioned environment and by applying moisturizer to the skin.

Colds and Coughs

Studies show that people who spend long hours in air conditioned rooms are often more prone to colds and coughs. The reason for this is not simply that the room is too cold, although that could be part of the problem. What many people do not realize is that just because an air conditioned room restricts the entry of dust and dirt, it does not completely stop it. This dirt can collect in carpets, curtains and crevices, besides collecting in the air filter units. The more time spent in a room with this hidden dust, the more you will be prone to coughs and colds and the more medication you take, the more resistant to it you will become over time.

Like any other appliance, an air conditioning system needs regular maintenance to not just keep it working smoothly and efficiently but also to ensure that the indoor climate it creates is a healthy one. Having your air conditioner regularly serviced and maintained by an air conditioning specialist is the simplest way to be sure that your air conditioning will keep you both comfortable and healthy.