If you suffer from breathing problems that result in cracked lips, a dry sinus and bloody nose, then it’s an indication the air you breathe in is dry and not well ventilated. A humidifier can help regulate these symptoms and other breathing hazards.
Many people are unfamiliar with humidifiers and have no idea what they do. And hardly get to the top of their shopping must-haves. But those with a medical condition, including asthma and other respiratory attacks, know how soothing it can get when the indoor dry air is expelled and replaced with moist-laden air that eases breathing discomfort.
But be warned! Owning a humidifier in the home is a good idea. But If indoor humidity levels stay too low or too high, you can quickly fall sick. And if you leave them maintained for long stretches, you get exposed to frequent colds, coughs and throat infections. So, if you are already using or plan to buy one, be sure to monitor humidity levels and maintain it regularly.
If your home has high humidity, it can feel hot and uncomfortable. The warm air can cause condensation on the floors and the walls, making them breeding grounds for bacteria, molds and dust mites. These breed allergens that can cause respiratory problems.
And if your home has low humidity; it can irritate your nasal passages and cause dry skin. Your throat will also feel dry, and eyes feel itchy.
What is relative humidity?
Relative humidity is the amount of water vapor pressure in the air. It is a percentage of the amount of moisture contained in the air. It is a combination function of the real moisture content of the air, the barometric pressure, and the temperature. Vapor in the air increases with temperature. If the percentage of relative humidity is high, the more moist the air feels. While a low percentage feels drier. Saturation happens when the air holds the highest amount of water vapor possible at the existing pressure and temperature. So, saturation is equal to 100 percent relative humidity, and the scientific term for this is precipitation. How humidity is measured.
If you're looking to measure the humidity in your home, you may need to buy a hydrometer. It is designed like a thermometer and is used to measure the amount of moisture in the air. They're available in department and hardware stores throughout major cities in the US. But most humidifiers these days come with built-in hydrometers. So, you may consider buying a humidifier with a built-in hydrometer.
So, what is a humidifier?
A humidifier is a device that emits steam or water vapor to increase moisture levels in the household air. The amount of water vapor in the air is called humidity. And it varies depending on the season. During winter months, humidity levels are low and high during the summer months. If humidity is too low, it can cause problems. And if humidity is too high, there are problems as well. Ideally, the right humidity levels in your home should be between 25 and 50 percent.
There are several types of humidifiers. Here are the major classifications:
a. Steam vaporizers
A steam vaporizer uses electrical power to generate steam that cools before circulating in the house.
b. Central humidifiers
A central humidifier is designed to circulate moist air inside the whole house. It incorporates the heating and air conditioning system in the home.
An evaporator uses a fan to blow moist air through a filter or belt that is attached to a wet wick.
d. Ultrasonic humidifier
Ultrasonic humidifiers use ultrasonic vibrations to produce a cold mist from a rotating disc.
The most widely used humidifier is the Evaporator. It is simple and self-regulating. A reservoir contains cold water and passes it into a basin. In the basin, a winking filter absorbs the water from the basin. A fan is then used to blow the air through a moistened filter. As the air passes through the filter, it leaves some of the moisture there. If the relative humidity is high, the harder it will get to evaporate water from the filter, and this explains the reason the humidifier is self-regulating. As humidity gets higher, the water output decreases.
It is common for an Evaporator to be hooked up with the heating and cooling system of a home. Both work in a similar way. A wire mesh or screen is located in the duct that comes from the furnace. When water from the homes pipes flows through the screen, it collects moisture.
Debunking myths about humidifiers
Because humidifiers are not ranked in the same category in the home as microwaves, hoovers and washing machines, there are plenty of myths surrounding their use. Many people do not consider them must-have household accessories and are uncertain about their overall value in the home. Although some of these myths are partially true, most of them can get easily debunked. Here are some common myths;
1. Your allergies will get cured forever
Installing a humidifier only relieves the allergy. It doesn't cure the allergy, but assists in soothing the symptoms. It's also effective in ridding the home of dust, mites, pollen, and mold that may cause allergies in the first place. People who suffer the nasty hay fever find a humidifier crucial in purifying the air.
2. If you suffer from dust mite allergies, you must buy a humidifier quickly
You don't have to buy a humidifier immediately you're diagnosed with dust mite allergies. Instead, seek out dust covers for your bedding, since this is where dust mites form. If you promptly cover the dust mite area with a dust mite cover, it will kill the dust mites.
3. Humidifiers banish odors in your home
Humidifiers do control unwanted odors from your home, but they do not eliminate the source of the odors. Most homeowners with humidifiers assume the gadgets will take care of odors emanating from rotting food, the pet's litter and ignore to take out the trash. A humidifier does not solve the problem of inadequate hygiene. Rather than getting illusions that buying a humidifier will resolve your hygiene issues, you can solve the problem by taking out the trash, giving your kitchen a thorough cleaning or merely flushing your pet's litter down the toilet.
4. You don't have to clean a humidifier
Whatever type of humidifier you choose to buy, it is imperative to clean it regularly. When deposits are collected inside the humidifier, it becomes a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. And the same bacteria will eventually get released to the indoor air through the humidifier. If you plan to buy a cool mist humidifier, you can replace the wick filter and clean the water tank with vinegar. If you buy a warm mist humidifier, you can also use vinegar to remove mineral deposits. Make sure to read the user’s manual and adhere to the maintenance schedule and cleaning instructions. Most humidifiers also come with warranties. Ignoring to clean a humidifier can cause serious health issues. For instance, if you have asthma, inhaling mineral content found in tap water can worsen your symptoms and result in a full attack.
5. Humidifiers and infants don't mix
If you're planning on having a new baby, then adding a humidifier to his room is the best thing you can do for him. Baby's immune systems are weak and fragile and not able to ward off bacteria and viruses in the air like adults. Their respiratory systems are also affected by the humidity and temperature in the room.