As heat waves continue to bombard Americans this summer, millions of people are looking for ways to stay cool. One of the best – and most cost-effective methods – is to use electric fans to circulate air and bring cooler air into the arm. While fans can do a good job at making a room feel cooler, especially during bedtime, experts are now warning against the use of electric fans overnight because they might induce asthma and allergy attacks in vulnerable people.
Electric fans circulate much more than just air. Their blades can also get pollen particles and bits of dust blowing around the home, which means that those who suffer from allergies or asthma might need to worry about flare-ups.
The Sleep Advisor warns: “As a fan moves air around the room, it causes flurries of dust and pollen to make their way into your sinuses. If you’re prone to allergies, asthma, and hay fever, this could stir up a whole lot of trouble.”
Fortunately, there is an action you can take.
The experts suggest, “Take a close look at your fan. If it’s been collecting dust on the blades, those particles are flying through the air every time you turn it on.”
Fans can also do damage to your skin if they’re left on for too long or overnight. According to one report, fans can make your skin look and feel dry. And the constant stream of air from the moving fan can also do a number on your eyes or mouth – especially for those who sleep with their eyes or mouth partially open.
Experts also warned people about the possible negative effects of sleeping with a fan pointed at your face or head. The constant stream of air might inhibit the quality of sleep, making people wake up feeling stiff and out of sorts.
“‘This is because the concentrated cool air can make muscles tense up and cramp,” the Sleep Advisor experts explained.
Fans can also cause sinus problems in some cases.
However, experts admit that sleeping with a fan can have some benefits.
First off, the white noise from the fan might help you sleep better. The generic hum of the fan can block out other sounds that might distract you from getting a good night’s sleep. Using a fan can be a cheap and cost-effective way to get the white noise you need to help support the sleep you desire.
Fans can also help make a room feel less stuffy.
In the end, experts suggest that “the only reason to completely avoid one is if it’s causing a health concern. If it is triggering allergy and asthma attacks or it’s drying out your skin or sinuses, you might need a different model. Sometimes the equipment also gets excess buildup of pollen and particles that are impossible to remove. If that’s the case, consider an upgrade.”
Have you ever experienced any of these health issues when using an electric fan? Do you prefer another way of staying cool during the summer?