What is Ozone?
Ozone may be helpful and dangerous to humans depending on where it is produced. The Earth’s upper atmosphere contains natural ozone, which protects humans from the sun’s UV radiation. Air pollutants (like those from cars, power plants, and chemical plants) react chemically in sunlight, forming harmful ozone forms at ground level.
At higher temperatures and with the help of sunlight, the chemical reaction of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) produces ozone. Vehicle and industry emissions are the major sources of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). As for Indoor Ozone, it is created by two basic mechanisms: via outside air that penetrates your interior space, and via electrical devices that generate it. Some air purification devices, certain air cleaners, and office equipment such as laser printers and copiers generate ozone as a byproduct.
Why do we need to monitor ozone Levels?
By inhaling ozone, humans can suffer. Ozone poses an environmental hazard as well. Analyzing ozone concentrations at our location can determine air quality trends, public notifications, and compliance with national standards.
It is important to monitor and regulate the levels of ozone due to the many risks it poses to human health. Ozone can cause respiratory irritation. A cough, sore throat, or stiffness or pain in your chest after taking a deep breath are all possible symptoms. Having a reduced lung capacity may make it harder to breathe deeply and efficiently. This is particularly true while working out at higher altitudes. Ozone exposure may also make the lungs more susceptible to infections, allergies, and other air contaminants. There may be long-term health effects even when ozone exposure has ceased.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends maximum ground-level ozone concentrations that are safe for human health. WHO recommends a maximum ozone concentration of 100 g/m3 based on eight-hour average intervals (47 ppb). Ozone health alerts are based on EPA air quality index readings.
What are the benefits of reducing Ozone levels?
On hot, bright days, when ozone concentrations may soar to dangerous levels, inhaling ozone can be hazardous to human health. Low amounts of ozone have been shown to impact human health negatively. Several studies have demonstrated that decreasing ozone levels has a positive impact on several areas:
Benefits to Health and Well-Being
Several scientific studies have connected ozone exposure to a range of health concerns, including coughing and a sore or scratchy throat, difficulty breathing deeply, discomfort while taking a deep breath, and inflammation, similar to a sunburn on the skin. Improving ozone levels and other indoor air quality elements such as temperature and sunlight exposure might reduce those health concerns.
Preventing Exacerbation Of Existing Conditions
Although asthma and other chronic respiratory disorders are not caused by ozone, they increase the lungs’ vulnerability to its effects. Those who suffer from illnesses are more susceptible to the effects of ozone even at lower concentrations than those who do not. Increased medicine usage, trips to physicians, and hospitalizations may result from these conditions. Ozone has also been linked to respiratory deaths in studies conducted in areas with high gas concentrations. Reducing the amount of ozone concentration will lessen the chances of worsening symptoms from these conditions.
Ozone concentrations that are too high may harm fragile ecosystems and vegetation. Ground-level ozone exposure may limit photosynthesis, delay plant development, and raise the plant’s susceptibility to potentially harmful causes, including disease, insect damage, weather damage, and even the detrimental impacts of other air pollutants. As such, monitoring and controlling ozone levels are critical for this not to happen and to achieve a healthier environment.
What can be done to improve ozone levels inside the home?
The manner you handle the ozone in your home is influenced by the source of the ozone. As a result, if you discover ozone in your house, the best line of action is as follows:
- Using either a Carbon filter or Photoelectrochemical oxidation (PECO) technology in an ozone-removal air purifier may help decrease indoor ozone levels.
- Avoid going inside a room for at least 30 minutes after using any equipment that generates ozone, or use it only when no one is in the room.
- Fresh air from the outdoors can immediately dilute the ozone in your home, so be sure to leave your windows open. Even if you don’t use an air filter, ozone ultimately breaks down into ordinary oxygen because of its reactivity.
- Don’t leave your car idling near your house or inside your garage.
How does uHoo help to improve ozone levels at home?
To ensure that you are informed and act immediately on any difficulties, uHoo can give a reliable real-time assessment of ozone levels at home and for all other key air pollutants. Aside from that, you can use it to keep track of your home’s air quality, get alerts when anything goes wrong so you can fix the problem right away, use the uHoo Virus Index to analyze your risk for virus survival and transmission in real-time, and simply link it with your HVAC and cooling systems to better control your indoor air quality.
- Health & Environmental Effects of Ozone | California Air Resources Baoard. (2020, November 6). Retrieved May 5, 2022, from Ca.gov website: https://ww2.arb.ca.gov/resources/fact-sheets/health-effects-ozone
- Zhang, J. (Jim), Wei, Y., & Fang, Z. (2019). Ozone Pollution: A Major Health Hazard Worldwide. Frontiers in Immunology, 10. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2019.02518
- Effects of Ozone | SCDHEC. (2019). Retrieved May 5, 2022, from Scdhec.gov website: https://scdhec.gov/environment/your-air/most-common-air-pollutants/about-ozone/effects-ozone
- Health Effects of Ozone Pollution | US EPA. (2015, June 5). Retrieved May 5, 2022, from US EPA website: https://www.epa.gov/ground-level-ozone-pollution/health-effects-ozone-pollution
- Ozone Effects on Human Health – Air (U.S. National Park Service). (2018). Retrieved May 5, 2022, from Nps.gov website: https://www.nps.gov/subjects/air/humanhealth-ozone.htm
- Ozone Monitoring. (2021). How We Measure Ozone – Air (U.S. National Park Service). Retrieved May 5, 2022, from Nps.gov website: https://www.nps.gov/subjects/air/howwemeasure-ozone.htm#:~:text=Ozone%20is%20harmful%20to%20humans,assess%20compliance%20with%20national%20standards.
- Actions You Can Take to Reduce Air Pollution | Ground-level Ozone | New England | US EPA. (2022). Retrieved May 5, 2022, from Epa.gov website: https://www3.epa.gov/region1/airquality/reducepollution.html
- Fisk, W., Spears, M., Sullivan, D., & Mendell, M. (2009, September). Ozone Removal by Filters Containing Activated Carbon: A Pilot Study. Retrieved May 5, 2022, from Osti.gov website: https://www.osti.gov/biblio/1050670
- Cros, C. J., Morrison, G. C., Siegel, J. A., & Corsi, R. L. (2011). Long-term performance of passive materials for removal of ozone from indoor air. Indoor Air, 22(1), 43–53. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0668.2011.00734.x