For seniors and those with lung conditions such as COPD, maintaining the ideal air quality in the house is vital. Air that is too dry, for instance, may cause or exacerbate health issues; for example:
- Dry, itchy, or chapped skin
- Nose bleeds
- A sore throat
- Dry eyes
- Aggravated allergy, asthma, and flu/cold symptoms such as congestion
- And much more
Yet air that is too humid can cause mold and mildew to develop, which can cause a number of health problems along with causing damage to the house.
So, are humidifiers good for COPD and older adults?
Humidifiers, when used correctly, can help maintain the perfect degree of moisture in the air (between 30 – 50%), and especially for anyone with a chronic lung disease, can foster eased breathing, reduced irritation of nasal passages, and also the ability to more efficiently expel phlegm in coughing.
Furthermore, using a humidifier during the night can ease snoring and congestion, help minimize the amount of any allergens, viruses and bacteria in the air, even relieve a dry scalp. Again, use caution to be sure the level of humidity does not exceed the ideal range, which could bring about disrupted sleep patterns.
There are different types of humidifiers available:
- Central humidifiers, that are built into the home’s central air conditioning/heating unit; the most costly option, but one that benefits the whole home rather than just one room
- Impeller humidifiers, utilizing a cool mist, which is a safer alternative because it can’t cause burns; it could, however, trigger allergic or asthmatic problems if overused
- Evaporators, blowing air through a dampened filter; an economical choice, but can be a problem if allowed to add too much moisture into the air
- Ultrasonic humidifiers, using vibrations to create mist in either a cool or warm option; offered in a number of sizes
- Steam vaporizers, which are typically the most affordable and most portable option; water is heated and then cooled before being expelled into the air
Check with a doctor about the advantages of a humidifier in your loved one’s specific circumstances, and which kind is preferred.
Responsive Home Care, the top-rated caregiver in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and surrounding areas, is here to assist individuals with chronic health problems like COPD, or simply just the challenges inherent in normal aging, through a variety of home care services. Contact us at 954-486-6440 to see how we can help you breathe easier with reliable in-home support.