Different Reasons to Use a Humidifier
On a scale from 1 to 10, how comfortable is the air in your home?
If you're constantly feeling clammy or sweaty, it could be that the air is too humid. At the same time, excessive dryness could signal the opposite.
If your skin is flaking, your sinuses are congested and you're tossing and turning at night, a humidifier can make a world of difference. Designed to gently release water vapor back into your indoor air, it's an ideal way to sleep better, breathe easier and feel healthier in your home.
Today, we're sharing the top reasons to use a humidifier so you can decide if it's time to invest in one for your home. Read on to learn why this might be your best home purchase to date!
1. Instant Skin Soother
Have you noticed that your lips tend to get chapped more during the winter months than during the summertime? Likewise, your skin might turn tight, ashen and ultra-dry, becoming itchy and irritated.
That's because, during those colder months, there is less moisture in the air than normal. Lower temperatures naturally cause a slight downtick, while overuse of heaters and furnaces contributes to the rest of the decline.
While you might notice these issues more during that time of year, the reality is that the air in your home could be too dry at any time. Most people feel comfortable when their relative humidity levels fall between 30% and 60%.
Relative humidity refers to the amount of actual water vapor present in the air compared to the maximum amount it can hold. If your levels reach 100%, this means they are at peak capacity and if they go over any more, precipitation will occur.
When your forced air is running at full speed, it can cause the relative humidity levels in your home to dip below that 30% threshold. That's when you'll first begin to notice those skin woes.
Your lips and hands are particularly vulnerable to this issue, as the skin in these spots is thinner and has fewer oil glands. While you could carry around tubes of lotion and lip balm everywhere you go, a humidifier is the answer to quick, long-lasting relief.
2. Clearer Sinuses
No one likes waking up or going to bed with a stuffy nose. Yet, if the air in your home is too dry, this could be your year-round reality. Especially if you already suffer from underlying conditions such as asthma or allergies, sinus congestion can wreak havoc on your daily life.
Thankfully, a humidifier can provide much-needed relief.
A bulk of sinus irritation occurs because the mucus membranes in your nasal passages dry out and become swollen. Not only is this uncomfortable, but it can also lead to more serious symptoms including pressure and sinus headaches. In some cases, the swelling can even cause a blood vessel in your nose to break, leading to a bloody nose!
While it might seem that adding moisture into the air would exacerbate the issue, the opposite holds true. The water vapor emitted from the humidifier helps the phlegm lodged in your nasal passages loosen and release. This way, you can sleep more comfortably and breathe more easily.
3. Coat Your Throat
Another uncomfortable symptom of dry air is the burning sensation you feel at the back of your throat. It might start out as a tickle, but it can quickly snowball into a full-fledged sore throat if left untreated. Soon, you're waking up with what feels like an entire head full of cotton!
In addition, when the mucus or phlegm in your nose gets blocked due to irritation, it can drain down the back of your throat, making it even scratchier.
The good news? You don't have to drink tea all day and eat lozenges like they're candy. There's a kind of relief that's much more direct, targeted and effective.
If your vocal cords are feeling especially hoarse lately, a humidifier can help relieve that strain. By optimizing the humidity levels in your home, you can help your throat feel naturally soothed and lubricated.
4. Ward Off Flu Germs
When flu season hits, people everywhere start looking for ways to help ward off the virus germs and keep themselves as protected as possible. Did you know that the secret to staying healthy might be your humidifier?
One study found that the influenza virus was less likely to exist and be transmitted in humid conditions.
Specifically, the researchers discovered that when the absolute humidity levels in the air were lower than standard, the virus was more likely to survive. It was also easier to spread among populations. The addition of moisture into the air effectively reversed this trend.
While we recommend running a humidifier in your home year-round, they're especially important to use during the dreaded flu season. While more research is required before an absolute correlation can be claimed, it's worth adding this step to your wintertime flu prevention routine.
Of course, you should still practice proven flu prevention measures to stay as healthy as possible. These include washing your hands regularly and disinfecting shared surfaces, such as doorknobs and sink faucets, in your home.
New studies are also showing that decreased levels of humidity can also be associated with the spread of the recent COVID-19 coronavirus. This post explains how adding humidity to your environment can offer additional protection against the condition.
5. Strengthen Your Nasal Defense
Did you know that one of your body's most important defense systems lies within your nose?
It's true! The microscopic strands inside of your nasal passages are called cilium and they're more powerful than you might think.
Working in tandem with your mucus membranes, these whisper-thin cells help trap pollutants floating around in the air you breathe. Then, they filter them out so they don't wind up in your lungs. You also have cilium cells in your lungs, respiratory tract and middle ear that serve the same purpose.
From dust and dander to mold and other irritants, there could be a wide range of these particulates around you at any time. When you're breathing in air that's too dry, your cilium can't do their job as well.
This means they're less able to filter out harmful substances, which could lead to lung irritation and a host of respiratory issues. A humidifier can help add moisture to the air so they can function as expected.
6. Bounce Back From Illness
We've all had those illnesses that seem to drag on forever. You've finished your prescription medicine and think you've turned a corner, but before you know it, you're back in bed where you started.
If you're tired of playing tug-of-war with your body, a humidifier can help you recover more quickly from a health-related setback.
For instance, if you're dealing with a respiratory condition that's led to breathing difficulties, a dry throat and a completely stopped up nose, these secondary symptoms can be even more irritating than anything else.
A humidifier can help keep these side effects to a minimum, so you're able to focus on getting back on your feet as soon as possible. At the very least, you'll be able to get some rest, and your body can initiate the recovery process as you sleep.
7. Add Warmth to the Air
Want to help keep your air moist and cozy during the wintertime without adding additional strain to your heater? While the uptick is minimal, certain warm-mist humidifiers can help warm the air in your room and keep you comfortable.
In general, moister air tends to hold more warmth than drier air. If you run your humidifier during cold months, you can help increase the relative humidity in your rooms to knock off the chill.
In fact, it's recommended that you use your humidifier alongside your heater instead of just running your heater when the temperatures drop.
That device alone can deprive your air of a majority of its natural moisture, and a humidifier helps to gradually add it back in so you don't feel the negative effects. Keep yours maintained all season long so you're ready to bring it out when you need it the most.
8. Keep Your Floors and Furniture Intact
Do your hardwood floors creak and squeak every time you walk over them? The issue could run deeper than normal wear and tear.
When the air in your house is very dry, it can cause the flooring planks to warp and bend. They're also more likely to snap, crack and split.
The same goes for any wooden furniture you have in your home. From the picture frames on your walls to the legs on your favorite armchair, you might see places where the wood joints have started to come apart from one another. This is a sign that it's time to add more moisture to your home.
Another area to check? Your wallpaper. If you have wallpaper in your home that was applied via the traditional glue method, that glue could dry out if your home's air isn't humid enough. As a result, you'll soon start to notice the paper pulling away from the walls and creating unsightly bubbles and tears.
While adding a humidifier now can't help reverse existing damage, it can help you prevent any similar issues from occurring down the road. In this way, consider it an investment in the future resale value of your home!'
9. Sleep With Less Snoring
Are you awoken almost every night by a spouse elbowing you or kicking you under the covers? Studies show that around 40% of adult men and 24% of adult women are habitual snorers.
When you add moisture into the air with a humidifier, you can help the entire family sleep a little more soundly at night. This is because dry air can aggravate your snoring symptoms, making your throat swell and your nose become congested.
When air isn't able to move easily through your nose, your sleeping body naturally reverts to breathing through your mouth. From there, that telltale snoring commences.
A humidifier can address this dryness and add moisture to the air. This way, your nasal passages can stay relaxed and open, and air can move more freely through them. While you might not stop snoring right away, it can help reduce the severity and frequency of the nocturnal habit.
10. Keep Houseplants Happy
Your family members aren't the only ones who can benefit from running a humidifier in your house! Many of your houseplants will also thank you.
There are myriad species of indoor plants that have their roots in the rainforest or jungle. As such, they're accustomed to warm, moist air and thrive best in those conditions. If you're wondering why they aren't thriving in your arid suburban home, the humidity level could be to blame.
The water vapor that your humidifier emits can help return them to their natural state. In return, they're less likely to show signs of despair and nutrient deprivation, which include:
- Leaf loss
- Dry, brown leaf tips
- Drooping leaves or stems
- Stunted growth
If you only plan to run a humidifier in your bedroom at night, bring a few of your plants in there to reap the benefits at the same time!
Use a Humidifier and Reap These Benefits Today
For years, you've seen them sold in stores and online. But, you haven't understood the real reasons why you should use a humidifier until today.
This list of 10 reasons is only the beginning. Humidifiers offer a host of benefits that range from improved health and wellness to a better night's rest for your baby. We encourage you to research these machines as much as possible to find the best fit for your family.
Want a little guidance in your search? You've come to the right place.
We offer a wide range of products designed to make your home as comfortable as possible. From humidifiers and memory foam cushions to essential oil diffusers and more, we carry it all.
Feel free to browse our entire collection and reach out to us today with any questions.