Did you know that 98,5% of all particles in the air we breathe are so small that we cannot even see them and we breathe around 15,000 – 18,000 litres of air a day. Most viruses and bacteria capable of causing illness and aggravating asthma are so small that a specialised air filter is required to clean the air. On average we spend around 90% of our time indoors and this air is generally up to 6 times more polluted than the outdoor air.
The importance of good indoor air quality is often overlooked even though it can be one of the largest contributors to colds, flu, asthma, fatigue, lack of concentration, headaches and more serious issues like lung fibrosis, asbestosis and lung cancer.
The smaller the particle the higher the potential to do harm as it is able to penetrate into the deepest part of the lungs. In offices and many homes in which we depend on air conditioning and heating systems a specialised air filter is essential.
The indoor air will almost always be far more polluted than the outdoor air and so opening windows is one of the simplest and easiest ways of improving indoor air quality. Indoor air is so much more polluted than outdoor air because building matrials are off-gassing, toxic paint, underlay, timber floor finishes, perfumes, synthetic air fresheners, cooking, gas stove tops, pest sprays etc. Designing a house so that there is good cross ventilation can take care of many potential indoor air quality issues in the future.
The key is to think more long term.
By investing a little bit more into the healthy design of your building you can prevent all sorts of medical expenses due to health issues down the line. Building Biologists work very closely with designers / architects to ensure that the building is as healthy and environmentally sound as possible.