October 2, 2018
Are you looking to improve your overall health, but don't know exactly where to start? Keeping up with a healthy lifestyle can often seem daunting, especially with a busy schedule. An easy way to live a little healthier is by adding a clean air routine to your day.
Taking a few moments to make sure the air around you is healthy can have a profound impact on your health. Breathing clean air has proven to improve concentration and productivity, help slow the process of skin aging, improve eczema and hives symptoms, alleviate allergies and asthma, and even improve your quality of sleep.
Unfortunately, we’re exposed to unhealthy air much more than we may realize–especially when we’re indoors. In fact, indoor air can be 5x more polluted than outside, due to everyday factors like paint, furniture, carpet, air fresheners, toys, and much more.
Don’t worry–it’s much easier to make sure the air around you (whether you’re at home or in your office) is healthy by adding a few small habits to your daily routine. To help you get organized, we’ll share our favorite tips for easily improving the air around you as you move throughout your day.
If you haven't already, we recommend getting started by reading our Healthy Morning Routine. If you've already committed to healthier air in your mornings, read on for our tips for a healthy afternoon:
As you move throughout your workday, you'll want to be mindful of how your workspace enviornment is affecting your health--especially with the number of chemicals lingering in your building.
Offices can be notorious for spreading germs (especially during flu season), and to combat many office managers will typically have workspaces cleaned often by a cleaning crew.
Unfortunately, the type of products cleaning crews use to disinfect offices can contain harmful chemicals known as VOCs, which will evaporate from desks long after they’ve been cleaned. VOCs can give you flu-like symptoms, including dizziness, headaches, nausea, coughing, and sneezing.
Advocate for your office to use safer alternatives to common cleaning products, including VOC-free disinfectants.
Dust can quickly collect around an office on desks, shelves, and more, and it can cause more discomfort than we realize, since dust can irritate your eyes, skin, and ability to breathe–in some cases, too much dust can also trigger allergies, asthma, and eczema.
To help you stay comfortable and focused, wipe down your desk regularly with a damp cloth (try to avoid dry dusters, since they’ll spread dust into the air). If a cleaning crew vacuum’s the office, be sure to let the room air out for a while before you and your coworkers enter, since vacuuming spreads dust that was previously trapped in your office’s carpet into the air.
Temperature obviously plays a major role in our overall comfort, but it can also affect our productivity. Too high or low temperature in your office can be distracting and will not allow you to focus and function properly.
If you can, advocate for your office temperature to be within the productivity sweet spot: between 70°F and 77°F.
Each person exhales about 2.3 pounds of carbon dioxide every day, and while it’s not necessarily a toxic gas, it can have a big impact on your ability to focus. This is because carbon dioxide is notorious for causing drowsiness, lack of concentration, and confusion.
Conference rooms filled with a team are at risk for high levels at carbon dioxide. To make sure you’re getting the most productivity out of your meetings, keep your CO2 levels low by opening a window or door. Allowing fresh air from outdoors to ventilate through your classroom will help keep your students alert and ready to learn.
Managing the air quality of your workspace can feel like a full-time job. Let an indoor air quality monitor, like Awair, do the work for you. Awair tracks invisible fine dust and chemicals in your air and gives you personalized recommendations to help you stay safe and healthy.
In an interview with NPR, dust expert Heather Stapleton confirms that “[our] understanding of how much dust a person is exposed to is very limited.” It seems there may be more to dust than we realize — even though these particles play a major role in our health. To help you get a few facts straight, we rounded up three more little known facts about dust:
Is the indoor air quality at universities impacting student health and academic performance? Unfortunately, there’s a good chance that the answer is yes. A big reason for this is the widespread presence of mold in classrooms.
Indoor air quality in schools has always been important. IAQ heavily impacts alertness and cognition, so it has a direct relationship to the well-being and performance of students. In addition, the topic has now taken on an all-new level of urgency during the COVID-19 pandemic.