Are you feeling less than productive recently?
Pollution in the air you are breathing might just be the culprit. And not just outdoor air, but more so the indoor air you breathe.
When we think of pollution, our mind may instantly go to outdoor pollution and think of chemical plants, smoke, exhaust from vehicles and so on. But the reality is indoor air is actually 2 to 10 times more polluted than outdoor air. And, all those pollutants are kept trapped inside and keep recirculating. What’s worse is 25 percent of outdoor pollution can still get indoors, which compounds the problem even more.
Harvard Study Links Poor Productivity to Indoor Air Pollution
A recent groundbreaking Harvard Study has linked productivity, indoor air pollution, and ventilation.
Joseph Allen, director of the Healthy Buildings Program at the Harvard Center for Health and the Global Environment and who led the researchers, said, “People who work in well-ventilated offices with below-average levels of indoor pollutants and CO2 have significantly higher cognitive functioning scores — in crucial areas such as responding to a crisis or developing strategy — than those who work in offices with typical levels.”
Humans breathe an average of 3,000 gallons of air each day, and 9 out of 10 breaths we draw are likely drawn indoors. In fact, most of us spend about 90% of our time indoors. A majority of this time is spent at work where buildings are becoming more airtight keeping pollutants inside and flourishing. Allen says we’ve been ignoring the 90 percent and indoor environmental quality and its impact on health and productivity are often an afterthought for businesses.
The Sick Building Effect
In the 80s, the sick building effect gained a lot of attention and brought indoor air pollution into the spotlight. Since then government departments and agencies have been working to address issues with indoor air quality.
Here’s a look at how indoor air quality effects you.
With every breath you take inside, you inhale air pollutants from your beauty products, dander and hair from your house pet, chemical vapors from your furniture and cleaners, CO2 from your stove, molds, spores, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. Yuck!
These pollutants have side effects. They can cause nausea, headaches, fatigue, shortness of breath and irritation of eyes, skin, nose, and throat. You may also find it difficult to concentrate… which leads us to your productivity. All of these symptoms have a direct effect on your productivity.
When we have trouble concentrating and just can’t get our thoughts in order, often we attribute it to work overload, or restless sleep from the night before, or a chaotic morning trying to get the children off to school. However, the reality is the air we are breathing is the culprit and it’s not going anywhere so the symptoms will continue and likely get worse.
Clean Air Solutions Reduce Air Pollution
If you want to improve your indoor air quality at work or home, consider an air filtration system. They are designed to capture even the smallest particles and keep them from recirculating back into your home or office building. The system works silently in-line with your HVAC system to make the air you breathe healthier.
If you want to learn more about the shocking statistics with indoor pollution and its effect on your home or work environments, download our Breathe Fresher & Healthier eBook. or call us for a free, no-obligation consultation. We’ll get you feeling better and more productive in no time.