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How long-term exposure to AC can harm your health?

Monday, 24 July 2023 | 10:03 AM EST

  • microgenhealth


Air conditioners (ACs) have become an essential part of our lives as temperatures have significantly increased over the past few decades. We spend a lot of our time in environments with air conditioning, but there is one small issue. In reality, prolonged exposure to ACs causes more harm than good. It has an effect on our health that is not always obvious. The following are five detrimental impacts of being in an AC room, day in and day out.

1. Infection with breathing issues:

Regular maintenance is required for industrial air conditioners, which are used in factories and large offices. Black mold can flourish in air conditioner filters and vents. They frequently have moisture on their ducts and coils, which can spread diseases through the air. This causes breathing difficulties and health conditions like pneumonia. You might get rhinitis, have a dry throat, or have a blocked nose. Rhinitis is a condition that irritates the mucous film of the nose. It is brought on by an allergic reaction or a viral infection. Your nasal passages may become dry if you stay in the air conditioner for too long. As a result, you will experience irritation in the mucous membrane which can make you more inclined to viral diseases.

The method by which the SARS-CoV-2 virus spreads has been extensively studied ever since the COVID-19 pandemic. The airborne transmission of droplet nuclei (aerosolized particles of 5 m in diameter) is still controversial. Several individuals have been categorized as super emitters as they can release viral particles while breathing, speaking, and coughing. It is known that the virus is primarily transmitted through close contact transmission, specifically when an infected person uses their voice at short distances of 1–2 m.

Other microorganisms, including vegetative bacteria (Staphylococci and Legionellae), fungi (Aspergillus and Penicillium), Mycobacteria (tuberculous and nontuberculous), enteric viruses (noro- and rotaviruses), and bacterial spore formers (Clostridium difficile and Bacillus anthracis), can also be spread through the air. These microorganisms include influenza and COVID-19. These pathogens’ virality is influenced, among other things, by air temperature, relative humidity, and turbulence. In that capacity, cooling can spread these pathogenic microorganisms, particularly when forced air systems don’t have a proficient filtration framework.

2. Fatigue:

You know that unpleasant sensation you get when you walk into a room with air conditioning? This is due to the lack of air circulation, which can result in headaches and exhaustion. It is also known as the “sick building syndrome,” which is a condition in which people who live in a building experience immediate health or comfort issues that appear to be directly related to their time spent in that AC spot.

3. Contamination:

Remaining in shut cool spaces with AC on for quite a while can lead to contamination inside as opposed to outside the room. How? The central air conditioning doesn’t allow outside fresh air which leads to the circulation of old air only. Hence, if somebody sniffles, the microbes will stay in the air.

4. Skin issues:

Your skin may become dry and dull if you spend a lot of time in an air-conditioned room. As per a few examinations, on the web, being in an AC room likewise affects your hair condition.

5. Eye issues:

Conjunctivitis and blepharitis, or inflammation of the eyelids, can also be caused by air conditioning. Additionally, contact lens wearers should avoid prolonged exposure to air conditioning because contact lenses require more moisture to prevent falling off, whereas moisture easily evaporates in a room with air conditioning.

6. Dehydration:

Dehydration rates are higher in rooms with air conditioning than in other rooms. If the air conditioner removes too much humidity from the room, you will feel dehydrated. Think back to a time when the air conditioner was set to a low temperature and you were too cold to drink water.

7. Asthma and allergy:

People with asthma and allergies may experience worsening symptoms from air conditioning. Staying indoors with AC on can help those who are sensitive to pollution because it keeps them away from other pollutants. However, others may encounter the opposite. Your air conditioner may be more susceptible to triggers that can aggravate asthma and allergies if it is not cleaned and maintained properly.

8. Migraines and headaches:

Headaches and migraine can result from dehydration brought on by the air conditioner. When it comes to migraines, dehydration is often overlooked as a trigger. There is a possibility that you will experience headaches if you abruptly exit air conditioning rooms or enter the heat after being in the air conditioning for an excessive amount of time. Additionally, you are more likely to experience migraines and headaches in AC rooms that are not properly maintained.


Do the above-listed cons of AC outweigh the pros? Well, anything is good when practiced in a controlled way. Yet, when you become an AC addict, your body may feel hot even in the winter, and this proves to be very bad for your health.

Be aware of your body temperature and health when you are in a room with the AC switched on. Stop and assess the condition if you notice any health issues.

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