Throughout the world, nine in 10 people inhale highly-polluted air. So, it’s no wonder that air pollution has become a leading cause of disease and mortality. It’s also for this reason that you’d want to ensure that you, and everyone you care about, have access to clean air.
This is especially true for indoor air. Studies found that it can be two to five, sometimes even 100 times more polluted than outdoor air. This is something you should care about, as most people spend at least 90% of their time indoors.
The great news is, there are several things you can do to prevent more air pollution. Some technologies can also help you clean the air inside your home.
Ready to learn more? Then let’s dive right into it!
Get Clean Air by Planting More Plants
Plants have incredible gas absorption properties, as they need these for photosynthesis. They require lots of sunlight and carbon dioxide so they can grow and survive. They then convert CO2 into oxygen, which humans and animals need to live.
That, alone, should be enough reason to make you fill your home with shrubberies.
However, indoor plants can also absorb many other gases, like volatile organic compounds. VOCs are notorious indoor air pollutants known to cause many diseases. In addition, potted greens have shown to absorb benzene and even formaldehyde.
Studies have also found that rooms filled with plants have fewer molds and bacteria. Compared to those without plants, flora-filled rooms had 60% fewer molds and bacteria.
So, not only are plants super pleasant to look at, but they also clear the air.
Note, however, that there are some plants that clean the air better than the others. To get the most VOCs out of the air, go for Boston ferns, spider plants, and peace lilies. These are among the most effective air-purifying plants; plus, they’re beautiful.
Enjoy Clean Air by Using an Air Purifier
An air purifier is a device that reduces the number of harmful organisms in the air. You can think of them as an air “sanitizer,” getting rid of pollutants, toxins, and allergens. Depending on the type you choose, the device can eliminate mites, pathogens, and pollen.
When air passes through the purifier, the machine captures its harmful contents. The purifying device then further sanitizes the air before blowing it into your home.
In this way, air purifiers are different from filters. Keep in mind that filters only remove unwanted particles in the air.
Air purifying systems do function like regular air filters too. However, filtering is only a part of their technology. They take the process several notches higher by completely eradicating the pollutants.
Know When to Dehumidify and Humidify
Dehumidifiers are machines that help reduce indoor humidity levels. They remove excess moisture in the air, which is vital to control dampness problems. High levels of humidity can make your home more prone to molds, the spores of which can mix in with the air.
Dehumidifiers can be helpful if you live somewhere that has a relative humidity rate of over 70%. The same goes if you have indoor dampness issues. Molds thrive in places with an indoor relative humidity of 70% or higher.
Humidifiers, on the other hand, do the exact opposite: they add pure moisture to the air. They can be instrumental during the winter when the air becomes too cold and dry. Dry air can irritate many parts of the body, and can also trigger asthma and allergic diseases.
While these devices don’t purify the air, they can help make it resistant to contaminants. So, in a way, they can supplement your at-home “clean air act.”
Don’t Forget to Change Your Air Filters
Your air conditioner and heater come equipped with air filters. These products filter the air that the AC or the heater takes in and then circulates into your home. They help your cooling and heating systems perform efficiently.
More than that, they trap airborne particles so that you can breathe in fresh, clean air.
Over time, however, filters can get clogged up with dirt, debris, and air pollutants. If this happens, they can no longer trap more contaminants. They can then cause these airborne particles to flow and float around your home.
That’s why it’s best to change or wash your HVAC filters at least once every two or every three months. If you have pets or live somewhere quite polluted, you should do this every month.
Besides, giving your HVAC system a filter change can help you cut your cooling or heating costs by 5% to 15%.
Freshen up the Air by Diffusing Essential Oils
Studies, albeit limited, link the use of essential oils to clean air. Previous research, for instance, found that thieves oil reduced airborne bacteria levels. These include the microorganisms P. aeruginosa, M. luteus, and S. aureus.
According to the researchers, diffused thieves oil reduced P. aeruginosa bioaerosol by 96%. This is a pathogen known to cause conditions like dermatitis and lung infections.
S. aureus is the bacteria that causes staphylococcus aureus infections. Most of these are skin infections, but the bacteria can also get into the bloodstream. From there, it can spread to organs and also cause diseases.
M. luteus is not pathogenic, though, which means that it’s often harmless.
With that said, you may want to use essential oils as a sort of air purifying “supplement.” Thieves oil is a blend of essential oils, including cinnamon, clove, and eucalyptus. You can buy them individually and mix your own, but you can also get them pre-mixed.
Use a diffuser to introduce the oils into the air inside your home. Even if they do little to clear the air, they do smell great.
Start Breathing in Clean Air With These Strategies
There you have it, some of the best ways that you can turn polluted air into clean air. As you can see, breathing in fresh, healthy air isn’t rocket science; it can be as simple as getting more plants. If you live somewhere with high air pollutant levels, though, you may want to get an air purifier, too.
Do you want to learn more about clean air, environmental issues, and how these can affect your health? Then please feel free to browse our other blog posts! We have more useful guides and how-tos that can help make your home healthier.