When we hear the word ozone, we usually associate it with the layer of blanket above us that protects the Earth from the harmful ultra-violet light of the sun. That’s why all of us are constantly urged to do our share to keep the ozone layer intact. But did you know that there’s another kind of ozone and it’s a pollutant? Apparently, when we come into contact with it, it can have potentially harmful effects on our health.
According to the fact sheet published by the Connecticut Department of Public Health, “Ozone, or O3, is a molecule made from three oxygen atoms. The three oxygen atoms form an unstable toxic gas that is highly reactive with other gases in the air. Ground level ozone is a major component of smog. Ozone found high up in the atmosphere, called stratospheric ozone, protects us by shielding us from harmful ultraviolet (UV) light. This “high in the sky” ozone and its beneficial effects should not be confused with the harmful “low to the ground” ozone, or smog.”
Ozone possesses major characteristics that make it an intense cleaning and bleaching agent as well as a disinfectant. However, these powerful properties are harmful to living organisms. For humans, ozone is especially harmful when it attacks our lungs. It can cause inflammation and damage to the cells lining our airways.
Factors That Influence High Ozone Concentration
- Industrialized and Populated Areas – Highly industrialized and populated areas have higher ozone levels because they have more traffic and more factories that produce ingredient gasses (VOC’s and NO2). More so if the area is has predominantly hot and sunny days all year long.
- Warm Sunny Days – During a cloudless, sunny day, ozone concentration will continue to increase all day long then drops quickly after sunset. This is because heat and sunlight provides energy for ozone formation and ingredient gasses (VOC’s and NO2), which emits ozone, are at high levels during the day contributing to more ozone formation. But after sunset, the energy for ozone formation disappears and there are less ingredient gasses that’s why ozone formation becomes less concentrated.
- Products and Equipment – There are various products available today that are known as “ozone generators” which means that when utilized, these products emit the pollutant ozone. Included in the list are: office equipments such as photocopiers and laser printers, industrial manufacturing process of ozone treatment for bottled water and certain kinds electric or ion-generating air purifiers for clear air rooms and spaces.
Not All Air Purifiers Purify
Air purifiers are an important staple in many households and offices today. If you want to improve the quality of air inside your home or office and maintain a healthy lifestyle, then installing an air purification system may seem to be the best choice. But be careful. You may be unwittingly polluting the air with a purifier that intentionally produces ozone, which can potentially lead to adverse respiratory effects.
Let’s take a look at the possible risks associated with ozone-generating products such as air purifiers.
- Airway irritation resulting in cough, throat irritation or a general feeling of discomfort in the chest area
- Affects allergy control efforts because it aggravates and worsens asthma attacks
- Decreases ability to breathe deeply or energetically
- Worsens effects of bronchitis, COPD and emphysema
- Increases risk of infection in the respiratory system
- Permanent lung damage
Symptoms may occur as an effect of ozone exposure. And your lungs can even continue to deteriorate even after the symptoms are gone. On the other hand, harmful effects may take place without you knowing. Children and people with respiratory problems are especially at risks. So it’s better to start being safe today and be mindful of the products you use in your home or office. Whilst we cannot avoid the ozone pollution outdoors, there’s no need to take it indoors as well.
Good thing there’s PURE air purifiers for asthma, clear lungs and clean space. These products do not emit any amount of ozone at all so you and your family are assured of breathing-in nothing but purified air indoors. And when you travel, you can simply stay in one of the many PURE rooms in hotels across America. This way, you can steer clear of ozone as much as possible while being in a clean and allergy-free environment. For more information, visit www.pureroom.com