The Long-Term Health Risks of Ionized Air

This article explores the potential health risks associated with using air ionizers and provides viable alternative solutions to address indoor air quality issues.

The Long-Term Health Risks of Ionized Air

The discussion surrounding the potential health hazards of air ionizers has been ongoing for some time. While some skeptics argue that air ionizers emit dangerous levels of ozone, which can be detrimental to health, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) advises against using ozone generators, except for approved industrial purposes. Not only are ozone generators ineffective at purifying indoor air, but inhaling ozone can be hazardous to people and animals. This article will explore these health risks and provide viable alternative solutions to address indoor air quality issues. In a controlled environment, air ionization has been demonstrated to reduce the concentration of fine particles (PM) by 70% to 75%.

However, a 6-month study found no statistically significant difference in peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR) between active ionization and placebo/non-ionizer environments. Additionally, the effect of ionized air on the sensitivity of inhaled histamine was inconclusive and joint symptoms did not improve when arthritic patients were exposed to negative air ion therapy. The primary purpose of air ionizers is to disperse negative ions capable of cleansing the surrounding indoor air from various contaminants that are detrimental to health. In an experiment conducted by Zylberberg and Loveless, 16 asthmatic men and women were exposed to ionized air particles for two periods of 120 minutes each. The authors found no appreciable effects on lung function at rest.

Moreover, five babies were exposed to negative air ion therapy for two hours during a two-week period and their weight gain, heart rate, and body temperature did not change significantly. Air filters that use ionizers and electrostatic precipitators are other types of devices that emit ozone, but they do so as a by-product of their design and function. To reduce the presence of microbes, micropollutants, and allergens in indoor air, consumers are encouraged to eliminate or reduce sources of indoor pollution and to ventilate areas with outdoor air. Furthermore, they should consider purchasing an air filter that uses an ionizer or electrostatic precipitator. In conclusion, the literature provides no reliable evidence of the effects of negative or positive air ions on pulmonary, respiratory, or metabolic measures. While some studies have reported a variety of pulmonary benefits after exposure to negatively charged air ions, others have reported some mildly unfavorable pulmonary responses after exposure to positively charged air ions.

Therefore, it is essential for consumers to be aware of the potential risks associated with air ionizers before making a purchase.

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