Humidity and the air we breathe in can impact our health and comfort in more ways than one. High or low humidity that is relative to the current temperature of our surroundings can produce certain effects that we have to manage or overcome.
Otherwise it can alter indoor air, as well as create adverse conditions inside our homes. This is particularly true in homes where there is poor ventilation or inefficient air conditioning systems.
Understanding the Concept of Humidity
First off and before going further, it should be clear that humidity refers to the amount of water that the air holds. This denotes that if the air holds too much water, the humidity is high. Conversely, if there is little water in the air, the humidity is low.
How Does Low or High Humidity Affect Our Health
If there is low humidity, there is less water vapor in the air, which can change the moisture level of air we breathe in. Lack of moisture can dry skin, lips, throat, the mucous membranes and also our hair. As this happens, we tend to experience discomfort such as experiencing itchiness and chapping.
Lack of moisture in arid regions could also cause hyperventilation in the body, which in turn can lead to respiratory illness; or worsen the condition of people with existing respiratory disorder. In colder regions where the body is unable to sweat, too much moisture retention can make that body susceptible to colds and other forms of respiratory illnesses.
Low humidity levels and cold temperature can make the body feel inner chills even when wrapped in warm clothes while in a heated environment.
In the same way, elements we use in our home can be affected by low humidity because lack of moisture can cause wood materials to warp, wallpapers to shrink, peel and loosen. All of which can create gaps where molds and mildew can settle once the humidity level increases.
When temperatures are high and the relative humidity is high, whatever water vapor carried by the air tends to evaporate rapidly. Those are the conditions in which warm outside temperature can cause indoor humidity to condense and turn into water. Indoor water condensation can be seen on window panes and glass panels, which in turn lowers the moisture level of indoor air when indoor humidity increases.
High indoor humidity results in low air moisture that affects our body’s ability to cool itself. That is why such conditions cause discomfort, particularly to people suffering from asthma or heart problems. In severe cases, high temperature and relative high humidity can cause heat stroke.
In order to keep moisture levels at comfortable levels, household use dehumidifiers and/ or Heating, Ventin, Air Conditioning or HVAC systems.
Too much water condensation inside homes and buildings create conditions that promote mold growth and pest infestation. The air feels clammy, surfaces become moist, while the odor becomes musty; conditions that allow fungi and insects including the microscopic dust mites, to flourish inside enclosed areas.
If allowed to exist in homes or enclosures for long periods of time, those harmful organisms pose as additional causes of health problems because they bring in all sorts of bacteria and allergens.
In South Florida for example, particularly in Boca Grande where outdoor temperature and humidity level is high most of the time, the kind of professional carpet cleaning boca grande folks require, often involves the use of steam equipment and strong cleaning materials and disinfectant.
That way, occurrences of spores, mold and/or mildew growth as well as pest infestation, can be arrested or eradicated as soon as possible.