Humidity and human health are closely related. Your health will be affected whether the humidity is low or high. When humidity is low, which is below 30%, you are likely to experience chapped lips, irritated skin and eyes, and aggravation of asthmatic symptoms. When the level of humidity exceeds 50%, you will experience many dangers. These include fainting, general fatigue, and heat stroke, among many others. It is; therefore, clear that humidity affects human health to a great extent. This is the reason why devices such as humidifiers have been created to ensure that the level of humidity remains at acceptable levels.
Effects of high humidity
Fatigue is a subjective feeling of extreme tiredness. It is one of the common problems associated with having too much humidity in the air. This is because too much moisture makes it difficult for your body to carry out its normal functions normally. This is quite evident during summer when the air is warm. You feel hot and stuffy because your body cannot easily release the excess fluids in your body in the form of sweat. Your body has to go into overdrive in order to ensure all functions are taking place. Consequently, you feel so tired yet you have not engaged in any strenuous physical activity.
Another effect on your health as a result of too much moisture in the air is fainting. It happens when a person suddenly loses consciousness. You will lose consciousness if the blood flow to your brain is not enough. A number of factors may combine to reduce the supply of oxygen to your brain. One such factor is too much humidity in the air. Too much moisture may cause your circulatory system to tire out; thereby, failing to deliver enough blood to the brain.
A common effect of too much water vapor in the air is dehydration. When the air is heavily laden with moisture, your body tends to produce too much sweat so as to provide a cooling effect. Consequently, you will end up losing too much water into the atmosphere; thus, becoming dehydrated. Stay safe during the summer by ensuring you take as many fluids as possible.
When your body is dehydrated, you are likely to suffer from muscle cramps. They occur when muscles, especially in the legs, contract and painfully refuse to relax. You may experience muscle cramps if you engage in physical exercises in warm weather, or when you take part in some sports, such as football. However, this is not to say that you should shun exercise in summer. Ensure you are well-hydrated before setting out into the field or gym. Clearly, humidity and human health are closely related: you cannot divorce one from the other.
If you get too hot, as may be the case in summer, you may suffer from heat stroke. Due to too much humidity in the air, the body may not be able to keep up with the process of cooling itself. The air may only hold excess humidity if the temperatures are exceptionally high. Although heat stroke is not common, it is very dangerous. This is because it puts a strain on the kidneys, lungs, liver, and brain. This makes it life-threatening.
Closely related to heat stroke is heat exhaustion. If you become too hot to the extent of losing too much water and salt from your body, you will experience heat exhaustion. You will generally feel unwell. If unchecked, heat exhaustion may result in heat stroke. As you can see, your health will always be affected by the level of humidity in the atmosphere or in your room. Consequently, you have to take appropriate measures to ensure you stay in an environment bearing the right humidity.
Effects of low humidity
The effects of low humidity on your health are just as serious as those of high humidity. Low humidity occurs when atmospheric air is too cold to accommodate water vapor. During winter, you not only need to heat up your home but also need to humidify it. The following are some of the effects low humidity is likely to cause to your health:
Predisposition to flu
Cold air tends to increase the lifespan of some disease-causing pathogens such as flu viruses. Consequently, during times of low temperatures, you will come across many people suffering from flu or common colds. During such times, there is very low humidity in the air. This is because cold air can accommodate water vapor.
Inflammation of the respiratory tract
Low humidity is also responsible for drying out the mucus membrane lining your respiratory tract. This may cause inflammation of the respiratory tract and this affects its ability to protect you from diseases. This mucus membrane is a natural barrier and when tampered with, diseases such as common colds can find their way into your system.
Low humidity will interfere with your nasal congestion. Breathing in dry air causes the drying out of sinus membranes, which may become very irritated. You can avert this trouble by keeping your home properly humidified during the cold season. As your body sucks in air through the nose, a sensation of nasal cooling is experienced. Dry air flowing through the nose may leave behind the feeling of air being obstructed.
Irritation of the eyes and skin
Low humidity in the air can cause your eyes and skin to dry out, leading to parching and chapping. The atmosphere attempts to reclaim its humidity by sucking out some from your eyes and skin. Consequently, you will be left with dry skin and parched eyelids. They will then become very painful to bear. You need a humidifier or two on standby in your house.
To conclude, there is a close link between humidity and human health. Too much humidity will cause you to faint or experience fatigue while too little humidity will predispose you to common colds. Either way, your health will definitely be affected by the level of humidity in the atmosphere.