Indoor air pollution can be more toxic than outdoors and treating the air in homes, offices and other interior spaces with essential oils may be effective in countering viruses, bacteria, mould, fungi and dust mites, according to research.
Indoor air pollution levels in developing countries generally exceed the World Health Organisation’s guidelines and is damaging to health, according to an SA government paper on air quality.
The US Environmental Protection Agency says sources of indoor air pollution include mould, pollen, household cleaning products, pesticides, gases and building materials. It notes that “sick building syndrome” may lead to respiratory disease later in life.
The University of Southampton’s Prof Stephen Holgate estimates almost a quarter of deaths from air pollution are from indoor exposure, while Prof Louis-Jean Couderc, a French respiratory specialist, says improving indoor air quality may address respiratory allergies, including asthma.
SA Pharmacist, Giulia Criscuolo says eliminating indoor, airborne allergens by using essential oil sprays such as Puressentiel may counter respiratory allergies, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic when so much time is spent inside.
“Studies indicate that aroma molecules of essential oils may activate nasal passage receptors, triggering an immune response. Essential oils’ chemical structure resembles hormones, making them uniquely useful for respiratory symptoms,” she says.
Healthcare practitioner, Dr Arnike Redelinghuys added that Puressentiel, is classified as a natural biocide and tests show it’s antimicrobial effects may eliminate airborne bacteria (including MRSA and streptococcus) fungal spores, viruses and dust mites.
Research also shows that spraying Puressentiel – which contains 41 essential oils – indoors is safe for asthmatic or allergic patients and may lead to a slight bronchio-dilating effect.
“In addition to hand and surface hygiene and facial masks, aerate indoors by spraying Puressentiel twice a day to ensure the best possible protection,” she said.