While the worldwide pandemic may have brought attention to the role pollutants play in the transmission of airborne viruses, we still confront an indoor air safety and health problem for which there is no cure, only prevention – indoor air pollution.
For decades, poor indoor air quality has been a problem in the workplace, posing a variety of health concerns. Office air that is constantly recycled and filled with particles, germs, and hazardous gases has been shown to impact mood, productivity, and job performance. Here’s how you can guarantee that your workplace’s indoor air quality is maintained.
1. Avoid inducing respiratory problems.
It is in the best interests of the company to limit employee exposure to anything that might endanger their respiratory system. Tobacco smoke and dust from sweeping or vacuuming might aggravate underlying respiratory or allergy problems. Emissions from old materials, and furnishings can account for up to 30% of total volatile organic compounds (VOCs), aggravating allergies and respiratory problems in office employees and contributing to Sick Building Syndrome (SBS).
2. Keep things tidy.
You can prevent the build-up of allergens and bioaerosols from coughing, speaking, or sneezing that contaminate surfaces and cause disease by keeping surfaces clean. To keep dust and bacteria at bay, wipe down desks and communal surfaces with a wet cloth on a regular basis. Offices with carpets, which can emit aldehydes and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), might worsen respiratory problems and reduce productivity. To guarantee allergens and dust are effectively eliminated, clean carpets twice a week using a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
3. Separate your office equipment.
Indoor air pollutants such as particulate matter, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and ozone are all linked to SBS symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, and a tight chest5. Printers, photocopiers, and all-in-one office machines are known to emit indoor air pollutants such as particulate matter, VOCs, and ozone, which are all linked to SBS symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, and a tight chest. Boost ventilation to enhance circulation and increase hourly room air exchanges, and keep machinery separate from workers in its own room or designated area if practical.
4. Colds and flu should not be taken lightly.
Because of the increased possibility for contact between healthy and ill people in shared workplace spaces, viral infections spread quickly through contact with infected persons or contaminated objects. According to studies, employees who work in open-plan workplaces with more than six people miss 62 percent more days. Businesses can minimize the likelihood of illness-related absenteeism by creating a good work culture and implementing sick leave rules that safeguard employees’ health and safety while also reducing “presenteeism” (the phenomena in which unwell employees still come to work).
5. Take into account indoor air quality technologies.
Inside, harmful quantities of indoor air pollution can enter through old HVAC systems, which can produce VOCs and harbour fungus colonies.
8 Other indoor pollutants, such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, and ultrafine particulate matter, can have greater negative long-term impacts on productivity and health. To safeguard employees’ physical health as well as their performance, comfort, and quality of life, treating the air requires specialist technology capable of sustaining high levels of indoor air quality at work.
As the hazards of indoor air pollution become more widely recognized, the day will come when the quality of indoor air in workplaces and workstations will be formally controlled. Businesses, on the other hand, may now get ahead of the competition by investing in indoor air safety technologies. Employees will feel confident that their health and welfare is respected if the company openly commits to clean air and provides a safe working environment, and the company will have an obvious advantage when recruiting fresh talent.