You may not realize it, but the air in your home can greatly impact your health. In the winter months, when the air is drier, it’s essential to improve the moisture levels in your home. One simple and effective way to do this is to use a humidifier. Keep reading to learn how using a humidifier in the winter can help you sleep better and what to consider when buying one.
Benefits of Using a Humidifier
Winter can be difficult for everything from allergies and other respiratory issues to dry skin. One way to help alleviate these problems is by using a humidifier to add moisture to the room where you’re sleeping. Here are just a few benefits of sleeping with a humidifier during the winter.
Prevents Dry Skin and Chapped Lips
One of the most common complaints in the winter is dry skin. When the air is dry, it sucks the moisture out of your skin, leaving it parched and cracked. This can also lead to chapped lips. Using a humidifier can add moisture back into the air, which will help prevent dry skin and chapped lips.
If you share a room with someone who snores (or if snore yourself), you know how frustrating it can be. Luckily, there’s a simple solution: use a humidifier at night. Dry air can contribute to snoring because it dries out the nasal passages and throat. By adding moisture to the air with a humidifier, you can reduce snoring and get a better night’s sleep.
Prevents Static Electricity
It’s not something you usually think about when preparing your home for the winter, but another problem that many people experience during the winter is static electricity. When the air is dry, static electricity becomes more prevalent because there aren’t enough particles in the air to dissipate the charge. This can result in your hair standing on end or getting shocks every time you touch something made of metal. Running a humidifier will increase the moisture in the air and help to prevent static electricity from becoming an issue in your home.
Help Prevent Respiratory Infections
Viruses and bacteria thrive in dry conditions. To help prevent the risk of infections, you can use a humidifier to aid moisture to the air. This can help keep your nasal passages and throat from drying out and becoming infected. Plus, when the air is more humid, these pathogens are less able to survive and proliferate.
Ease Asthma Problems
Asthma is a condition that affects the airways, making it difficult to breathe. Symptoms include shortness of breath, wheezing, and coughing, and can be triggered by a number of things, including cold air. One way to help ease asthma symptoms is to use a humidifier while you sleep. By adding moisture to the air, a humidifier can help to reduce inflammation and mucus production in the airways. This can make it easier to breathe and help to prevent asthma attacks.
Buying a Humidifier
Now that you know the benefits of using a humidifier, it’s time to learn a little more about what to think about when buying one.
Types of Humidifiers
There are several types of humidifiers available on the market, each with advantages and disadvantages. Here are a few options:
- Ultrasonic humidifier, which uses ultrasonic vibrations to generate a fine mist. This humidifier is very quiet and doesn’t use heat, making it a safe choice around the vulnerable.
- Evaporative humidifier, which uses a fan to circulate air through a moistened wick. They’re relatively quiet, though because the water isn’t heated, cleaning the system becomes more important.
- Impeller humidifier, which uses a disk to create a fine mist. These humidifiers make slightly more noise than others.
Safely Using a Humidifier
Start by reading the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Ensure you understand how to operate the humidifier and clean it properly. If it’s a humidifier that uses steam, keep it out of reach of children and pets so that they don’t get burned. Once you’ve chosen a safe location to set it up, put the humidifier on the correct setting — you don’t want the room to be too humid, or condensation on the walls could lead to having to remove mold.
How to Maintain a Humidifier
It is important to maintain your humidifier to prevent the growth of mold and bacteria. After unplugging it, the first step is to empty the water tank daily and rinse it with clean, fresh water. At least once a week, you should also clean the inside of the tank with a mild vinegar solution, or whatever is suggested by the manufacturer. You’ll also want to check the filters or cartridges and change them whenever necessary.
Sleep Better This Winter With a Humidifier
A humidifier not only improves your sleep quality, but can also reduce snoring and help with congestion due to allergies or the common cold. If you have trouble sleeping during the winter months, try using a humidifier in your bedroom for relief. You may just find that you sleep better than ever before!