Articles

Chemical Allergies and Air Purifiers

We live in a chemical-filled world. Most chemicals with which we come in contact are not part of the ‘natural’ world and thus are considered ‘foreign’ to our bodies. Thus, many people suffer from something called Multiple Chemical Sensitivity or MCS. What Exactly Is Chemical Sensitivity? Increasingly our society is based on chemistry. After World War II petrochemicals were developed and used in a variety of consumer goods. Plastics are the most ubiquitous of petrochemical products. In addition, petrochemicals began to appear in almost every household product including cleaning products, pesticides, detergents and perfumes/scents. Synthetic fabrics, carpeting and building materials were made with petrochemicals as well. These items tend to give off toxic fumes, especially when Read more [...]

Is My Air Purifier the Cause or Cure of My Headaches?

Headaches have many different causes, but one of the main causes can be traced to airborne allergens in the environment. The major type of allergy headache from airborne allergies is the sinus headache. Headache, Headache, Go Away The paranasal sinuses are paired open cavities in the skull that surround the nose and eyes. Everyone has four pairs of sinuses: one pair below the eyes and next to the nose (sinus maxillaris), one pair above the eyes (sinus frontalis) and two pairs between the eyes (sinus sphenoidalis and cellulae ethmoidales). When the membrane in the sinus cavity is inflamed, sinusitis and headaches result. The membranes in sinuses are similar to those in the mouth, throat, eyes and nose. If a person is allergic to an airborne particulate substance such as pollen, mold Read more [...]

Best Air Purifiers for Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)

Do you ever walk into a room only to be hit with a wall of odor from someone who decided to bathe in perfume? Or how about walking into a smoker’s house? Most people are sensitive to some type of airborne chemical, but people who suffer from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) are extra sensitive to a large number of chemicals in very small quantities. MCS - A Frustrating Condition MCS is not recognized as a true medical condition. Further, there are people who will say that MCS is a psychosomatic response. But those who suffer from MCS *really* suffer. Some of the symptoms of MCS include nausea, headache, scratchy throat, itching eyes, runny nose, sleepiness, dizziness, abdominal cramping, joints aching, ear aches, confusion, etc. Some substances that often cause MCS are tobacco smoke, Read more [...]

Charcoal Air Purifier, Charcoal Filter, Chemical Air Purifier

The Truth about Charcoal Air Purifiers A charcoal air purifier or charcoal filter, also commonly known as an activated carbon air filter, works by absorbing the gases and odors in the air. However, the cost and size of a charcoal purifier filter varies considerably. Charcoal that is marketed as activated carbon has been treated with oxygen to open up millions of pores in between the carbon atoms. This works so well because the millions of tiny cells that are in the charcoal in addition to being very porous also attract and capture odors and gases. A carbon air filter is also often used in military gas masks and water purifiers. This is because it is capable of absorbing toxic gases in air as well as chlorine and other chemicals in water. When the available cells are full of absorbed Read more [...]

Nail Salon Air Purifier, Chemical Air Purifier

Cleaner Air in Your Nail Salon Many people are exposed to chemical fumes on a regular basis. Some are sensitive to the molecular pollutants that are floating around in the air and suffer asthma attacks, allergic reactions or other respiratory issues when exposed to pollutants in the air, such as those found in a nail salon. A nail salon air purifier helps to keep the air free of the molecular pollutants that cause adverse respiratory reactions. When unclean air is trapped indoors where it circulates, it becomes dangerous, even more so for people with an acute sensitivity to fumes and other air hazards. Since nail salons are public places, they must be cautious about the quality of air within their spaces. Anyone who enters the salon will be exposed to the contaminated air, causing a Read more [...]

VOCs and Indoor Air Quality

VOCs are volatile organic compounds. This simply means they are chemicals that will evaporate into the air at room temperature. Depending on the concentration, their presence may be noticeable, as when you smell gasoline, or they may be scentless or at a low enough concentration to escape notice. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),  In the factory, several commercial, custom air cleaner solutions exist. Manufacturers are required to remove toxic substances with a fume extractor or air extractor to prevent or minimize release into the environment. This doesn’t help with volatile chemicals that may be trapped in the product when it is sold to the public. What is outgassing? The classic example of outgassing is what we call the “new car smell.” Although clever auto Read more [...]

Air Purifiers Remove Office Chemicals

We tend to think of the office environment as neat, tidy and clean. With regular janitorial services, to the eye it certainly appears so. However, there are often undetected chemicals in the office environment, but that do have health effects. In fact, it is enough of a concern for the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (a department of the CDC) to devote an entire section of their website to the problem. And, unfortunately, it isn’t enough for building management to use air duct cleaning or normal air filter systems to fix all the problems. Air filter systems installed as part of the air handling equipment for a building will help reduce dust accumulation, as will regular air duct cleaning. What these procedures will not do is remove most chemical contaminants from the Read more [...]

Formaldehyde Exposure

Formaldehyde is a very small molecule, about the size of a single molecule of water. However, even though it is extremely tiny, it packs a big punch. It’s probably best known to the public for its preservative properties – solutions containing formaldehyde have been used to preserve biological specimens and even in embalming. The reason it is so effective at stopping bacterial growth is the same reason we don’t want it in our air; it is extremely poisonous. The cells in our bodies can be killed by formaldehyde as easily as bacterial or fungal cells are. Of particular importance is the concentration of formaldehyde in the air. Measurements are given in parts per billion (ppb). One ppb means one molecule of formaldehyde in a billion molecules of air. The section below on formaldehyde Read more [...]

New Home Chemicals

In 2001, a phenomenon hit the news that had been largely hidden until that time. Drywall, imported from China and used in new home construction, was releasing sulfur compounds into the air. The toxic gasses – carbon disulfide, hydrogen sulfide and carbonyl sulfide – were generated by the drywall itself. The high sulfur content of the gypsum was reacting with moist air and releasing these chemicals. The Consumer Product Safety Commission got involved, and finally, in early 2012, a settlement has been reached. However, this example was just the visible tip of a huge iceberg, a gourmet menu of problems with new home construction and the materials used. And homeowners were under the mistaken impression that a high quality furnace air filter would help – it doesn’t. Only a carbon air Read more [...]

Asbestos

Asbestos is a mineral that occurs naturally. It is composed of silicon in glass-like threads. The properties that make it dangerous are also the properties that made it useful in construction and manufacturing. Primarily, asbestos fibers are inert. They will not naturally degrade from chemicals, sunlight or even high heat. This is also why they are so dangerous when inhaled. Because the human body cannot break down the fibers, they can accumulate in the lungs, causing irritation and eventual damage. Asbestosis and mesothelioma are two of the serious consequences of chronic exposure to asbestos. Asbestosis is a progressive lung disease caused by the physical damage and scarring that the sharp fibers can cause. Mesothelioma is a type of cancerous tumor that is triggered by exposure to asbestos. Read more [...]