Zee Media Bureau/Salome Phelamei
New Delhi: It's been five days since Diwali, but the air pollution in the national capital remained at hazardous levels, breaching safety limits and prompting severe health concerns among the residents, particularly young children, the elderly and people with respiratory conditions and heart disease.
In the wake of excessive pollution, health experts have asked people to leave the national capital if they want to be healthy and said that the levels of particulate matter (PM) are unlikely to go down over the next few days. In case you can't afford or face difficulties moving to a new place, you can still look out for some preventive steps such as buying an air purifier for your home, wearing protective face mask while outdoors.
But, there are few things you need to consider before buying an air purifier to help you find the right air purifier for your needs. For instance, if you have allergies such as asthma, you may consider buying an air purifier designed for allergy relief - HEPA filters, or High Efficiency Particulate Air filters, which are proven to eliminate 99.97% of common airborne allergens as small as 0.3 microns (the breadth of a human hair is about 50-150 microns). These air purifiers are regarded as the most effective air purifiers on the market.
Also, if you are a person who's extremely sensitive to chemicals, you might consider an air purifier for multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS).
Keeping all these things in mind, below are a few reasons why you need to buy an air purifier:
If you have a newborn or are pregnant
Research has shown that fetuses or newborns exposed to chemicals and toxins in the air have an increased chance of developing diabetes, cancer and other diseases later in life. Moreover, research has confirmed that carcinogenic air pollutants inhaled by pregnant mothers can harm the fetuses through the umbilical cord, causing damage to their DNA.
If you have young children
Children are more vulnerable to the toxic effects of air pollution as their metabolisms are immature and don't work like yours do. They also have higher respiratory rates than adults do. Research has shown that exposure to air pollution early in life may contribute to the development of asthma in childhood and adolescence.
If you have elderly parents or are over the age of 60
Older adults are generally more susceptible to toxins and pollutants due to the decline in functionality of their respiratory, immune and other organ systems. As we age, our bodies don't work quite as efficiently as they used to.
Also, seniors often develop pre-existing health conditions such as heart and lung disease that can be aggravated by particulates in the air. It is essential to cleanse the air at home to maintain a healthy, active lifestyle and promote longevity.
If you suffer from asthma or allergies
You're much more likely to feel the effects if you've had asthma because your respiratory system is already compromised. Since,air pollution is a major risk factor for people with asthma, an air cleaner is a must-have tool in any treatment program. Although there is no cure for asthma or allergies, you can improve the symptoms by patients avoiding the allergens that cause allergic reactions. HEPA air purifiers can be used as a part of a full program to help reduce allergens in the home.
If you live near a major roads or industrial areas
Studies have shown that people living close to major roads or industrial areas are at an increased risk from a variety of health hazards including cancer, heart attacks, strokes and respiratory diseases such as asthmatic bronchitis. This is because dangerous fine particles, which penetrate deep in the body, are being released by heavy traffic and industrial activities. Therefore people residing near major roadways and industrial areas should consider air purification systems for their homes.