Allergies can be a tricky ailment as there are so many variables that could cause an allergic reaction. Most allergic reactions can only be stopped by a medication of some sort or expensive prescriptions from your trusted healthcare professional. But with so many horror stories in the media today of long-term effects certain medications can have, it is no wonder people would prefer to choose an organic method to both avoid common allergens as well help reduce the severity of an allergy attack.
What if there was an appliance that would be good for helping you and your family reduce the amount of allergens that are currently polluting your home? A humidifier can help! Not only does a humidifier balance the humidity levels in your home, it can offer long-lasting relief to those who suffer from allergic reactions.
But “do humidifiers help allergies?” you may ask. Well’s let’s find out together!
What are Allergies?
Allergies are defined as a normally harmless agent that can cause a negative effect on the immune system. Pollen allergies and asthma attacks can present themselves as respiratory or flu-like symptoms such as a running nose, sneezing, coughing, and itchy eyes. They can also be seen in the form of rashes or hives, leaving the skin bumpy, itchy and swollen. The most severe allergy attacks can affect a person’s breathing, constricting airways and potentially leading them into anaphylactic shock.
What is a Humidifier?
A humidifier is a household device or appliance that controls the humidity levels in your home. They should generally feature a reading screen that will test the levels of humidity in the air at any given time.
Humidifiers can be purchased in the following types:
These humidifiers are portable and run via an electrical source in only one room. They can be moved from room to room but will not control the humidity levels of your entire home.
This type is installed directly into your home’s central air system and will control the humidity levels in every room of the residence.
Humidifier types also come with a variety of options for the device, such as:
Cool Mist Humidifier
– this device will omit a cool mist to the air while in operation.
Warm Mist Humidifier
– this device will also omit a mist to the air but it is warm in temperature. This option can cause burns, so caution is advised, especially when it is being used in a child’s room.
– this device dispels moisture into the air through ultrasonic vibrations and they can be quieter than their mist counterparts.
– this device will blow wet air through the use of a filter and fan to control the humidity levels in the home.
– this device produces a cool mist, which is created by a rotating disk at a high speed to create condensation.
How a Humidifier Can Help with Allergies
So, how do humidifiers work for allergies? The ideal level of humidity in the home ranges from 30% to 50%. This percentage means the particles of moisture in the air of your home at any given time. Air that is too dry or below the 30% mark can aggravate allergies because airways are restricted and can cause a dry, hacking cough along with a scratchy, raw throat. Air that is too moist or over 50% can block airways and create damp conditions that leave you struggling to breathe through an allergy attack.
The majority of mites and bacteria that can cause an allergy attack thrive in damp conditions, allowing them to multiply and survive longer than in a home that has peak humidity levels.
A humidifier will adjust the levels of your home to the optimal levels, allowing for peak breathing conditions, just damp enough to loosen any mucus build up on your chest due to an allergy attack.
If your allergies present themselves in the form of dry, itchy or rashes breaking out over the skin, then dry air will remove moisture from your skin even further. This allows the allergy symptoms to manifest themselves quicker and allow them to linger longer, even when using a prescription cream.
Allergies that cause itchy and rash-covered skin can also become irritated and allergy attacks more frequent when the air is too moist. When the air is too damp, it can become warmer, and your body will naturally produce more sweat. When you produce a higher amount of bodily fluids, your skin becomes damp as well. These damp conditions allows the rashes’ bacteria to spread to other areas of the body and spots will take longer to “dry” out.
The top way that a humidifier can help with allergies though is through the use of a filter or air purification system. The majority of humidifiers either filter the water through a screen or with the use of patented purification systems to remove allergens directly from the source. It is important to note that cleaning your humidifier and the filter (air purification system) as per the instructions is the best way to ensure that your home has clean moisture in the air. Make sure you clean both the internal and external parts of the unit, and use a gentle but disinfecting cleaning solution.
So we have just discovered how a humidifier can help a person who lives with allergies manage their condition in a natural and soothing way. Not only does a humidifier help a person breathe easier, you can add essential oils in the diffuser (if your unit has this option) which allows the air in your home to carry a soothing scent that also opens up airways. The majority of essential oils also carry numerous health benefits from muscle ache relief to skin condition relief.
So, what type of humidifier is best for allergies? If you or someone in your household suffer from allergies, why not pick up a single-room humidifier the next time you are at your local department or health store? The cost of the humidifier may be upwards of $100 (depending on brand, size, etc.) but the relief is priceless!
If you found this article helpful in any way or you know of a family member or friend that could benefit from this information, feel free to share! Do you currently use a humidifier in your home for allergy relief? Tell us in the comments below.