Many people with asthma and allergies are unaware that indoor air quality is sometimes worse than outdoor air. Common allergens and irritants in homes or workplaces include mold, dust mites, cockroaches, pet dander and cigarette smoke.

How to ensure a safe inside environment for you and your family?

National Institutes of Health (NIH) asthma guidelines emphasize that patients should avoid allergens that cause symptoms. One way to reduce indoor allergens and irritants is to use an air cleaner.

Air cleaners with high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters remove the majority of airborne allergens and are most often recommended by allergists.

New technological advances add to the wide range of air cleaners on the market. One such advance is biohygienics, a filterless, organic, water-based system that destroys airborne allergens as well as other particulates, viruses and odors. Most bio-hygienic systems are large-scale operations, but a portable, room air cleaner is now available, the O2 Air Purifier.

Bio-hygienic technology captures and breaks down pollutants, entrenching them in a water bath, and then uses microbes to digest them.

It removes three types of airborne pollutants, with no limitation to size: 1) particulate pollutants such as pollen, pet dander and dust mites; 2) biologic pollutants such as viruses, mold and mildew; and 3) gas pollutants (called volatile organic compounds, or VOCs) from paints and varnishes, cleaning supplies and office equipment, among others.

“Several VOCs have been implicated in worsening asthma, and now as a possible cause of asthma,” said David Brown, MD, president of Allergy Partners, P.A., the nation’s largest allergy practice. “The O2 is an innovative and easy way to reduce or eliminate these potentially harmful substances from the home environment.”

Remember that air cleaners play just one part in an overall strategy to avoid and reduce allergens and irritants indoors. Some measures include encasing pillows and mattresses with dust mite allergen covers, fixing leaks to stop mold growth and vacuuming with a HEPA filter.

For more family friendly ideas and tips to clean the air you breathe, download the free “Indoor AIRepair™ At Home, School and Play

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