Over 2.3 million Australians suffer from asthma, and of those, nearly 40,000 are hospitalised for their condition every year. Despite this, however, only 20% of asthma sufferers have steps in place to prevent a flare-up of their condition. Installing an air purifier in your home is one such step that is easy to implement and is proven to be effective.
As any asthma sufferer knows, asthma triggers can take many forms, including many things that would be harmless to most people. Here are four asthma triggers that air purifiers can help you avoid.
According to Asthma Australia, upper respiratory infections such as colds and influenza are the most common asthma triggers. During bouts of colds and flu, the body releases a protein called IL-25, which narrows the airways and sets off asthma symptoms. In winter, most of us keep our windows and doors closed, and the stale air that this creates provides an ideal breeding ground for airborne viruses.
Air purifiers provide an extra line of defence against common respiratory illnesses, in addition to the usual precautions of frequent hand-washing and staying away from sick people. Many air purifiers contain a UV lamp, which kills airborne viruses that pass through. If you are especially susceptible to colds and flu during the winter months, consider choosing an air purifier with a UV sanitising feature.
It is said that many asthma sufferers can tell when spring has begun simply by listening to the sound of their chests. Spring pollen is a common asthma trigger, and is made worse by high winds that carry pollen through the air. Inhaling pollen particles causes the body to release hormones that increase mucus production and contract the muscles in the chest, causing the wheezing sound that is all too familiar to asthma sufferers.
Air purifiers work by trapping small particles, such as pollen, to help improve the quality of the air you breathe. While air purifiers are not 100% effective against all types of airborne pollen, they are proven to reduce the prevalence of pollen particles in the air, and in turn, the frequency of asthma attacks at home.
Another asthma trigger commonly found in the home is the wide variety of chemicals commonly found in household cleaning products. Studies have linked a range of common household products, such as bleach, glass cleaner and even some detergents to asthma symptoms. Unfortunately for asthma sufferers, many of these products can be difficult to avoid—try finding a toilet cleaner that does not contain bleach, or dishwashing liquid with no detergent!
If you have noticed a connection between the use of household cleaning products and a worsening of your asthma symptoms, consider an air purifier with activated carbon (charcoal). These purifiers not only trap small particles such as pollen, but help remove the thousands of kinds of chemicals common in household cleaning products as well.
In November 2016, more than 8,000 Melbourne residents were hospitalised and eight people died during a freak thunderstorm event that swept through the state of Victoria. However, the cause was not flooding, lightning strikes or any other kind of natural disaster commonly associated with storms—it was asthma.
'Thunderstorm asthma' is a condition unheard of in many parts of the world, but common in some areas of Australia.
The humid conditions that often precede thunderstorms cause plant saps, ryegrass pollens and fungal spores to gain moisture and eventually burst, releasing hundreds of kilograms of particles into the air.
Obviously, there is nothing you can do to avoid thunderstorms, but air purifiers are an excellent first line of defence against the small particles that lodge themselves deep inside your lungs. Plant sap particles, for example, attach themselves to dust particles inside your home, can be effectively trapped by air purifiers that use hydroxyl radicals or a static charge.
Asthma is a common condition that affects 1 in 10 Australians, but of these, very few have steps in place to combat their condition. Get in touch with Air Cleaners Australia, the air purifier and filter specialists, today to find an air purifier that meets your needs.