Will An Air Purifier Help With COPD? Find Out Here!

May 7, 2021

Does An Air Purifier Reduce COPD Symptoms?

Disclaimer: The content below is written to share our experience and should not be regarded as medical advice. Please consult your Doctor should you have any questions.

COPD is a serious progressive lung disease that is now a very common respiratory infection for people to have in the world, it can affect one's quality of life and is often triggered via air pollutant particles in the air which acts as a lung irritant. 

While an air purifier will never be able to cure COPD, it can prevent symptoms from getting worse and reduce the likelihood of this common disease happening in people who don't have COPD already. This is because air purifiers filter out the ultrafine particle that can make COPD worse due to patients having a narrow airway. 

To help you decide which types of filter you should use with a purifier for COPD, understand more about the progressive disease and whether or not a purifier can be of assistance, we have assembled a short guide below that will give you all the knowledge you need about COPD and purifiers.

Is Bad Quality Air a Trigger For COPD?

Even though one of the primary causes of COPD is smoking, heavy air pollution inside and around you can trigger COPD and even contribute to the lung damage you are battling. Smoke odor in the air to breathing in second-hand smoke are all linked to worsening the symptoms of COPD and will cause common symptom effects such as a narrower airway or constant coughing. 

Will An Air Purifier Help With My Nasal Congestion

Indoor air quality can be up to five times more polluted than outdoor quality and cause difficulties in breathing, we have listed some common air pollutants that link to COPD below which can often be found inside. 

  • Biological pollutants - If the air inside of your home contains pet dander, mold, pollen and even particles from dead insects, then they can trigger your COPD from exposure to pollutant.
  • Radon - Radon gas is found as an ultrafine particle that enters many homes, this gas is radioactive and can encourage COPD to develop from chronic bronchitis.
  • Abestos - This chemical is found in some buildings roofs, flooring and insulation, when inhaled it can make matters worse with irreversible lung damage and difficulty in breathing.
  • Combustible pollutants - Fireplaces and water heaters that use fuel to work can emit harmful gases and chemical vapor in the air which encourage allergy symptom and COPD in some people.
  • Smoke from cigarette - Tobacco smoke can be a severe trigger and damage for person with COPD, even if you don't smoke yourself as someone with COPD, just breathing it in through the air will trigger symptoms.

Can An Air Purifier Help With COPD? 

Since COPD is caused and triggered by airborne pollution particle types in the air, a purifier in conjunction with other proper treatment might be able to help lower the symptoms of COPD when your inside. 

PureMate Multiple Technologies True HEPA Air Purifier review

This is because air purifiers with a HEPA filter type can remove up to 99.97% of tinier particle types that can make symptoms worse of COPD, it also improves general air quality for everyone in your household to breathe in and gets rid of nasty smoke odour or food odour which can be unpleasant.

Which Type Of Air Purifier Should I Choose For COPD? 

Although air purifiers can help control COPD symptoms, this is not the case with every powerful air purifier on the market, some work better than others, and an additional variety of filter types can even be dangerous to use, especially if you suffer from COPD. 

Since the type of filter you choose for purifying the air is important, we've listed the common ones below and whether or not they can help COPD so as you can decide what works best for the condition.

HEPA Air Purifier

A true HEPA filter in a healthy air purifier is the best solution for COPD symptoms as it traps tiny airborne irritant particles which can contribute to breathing difficulty with COPD such as dust mites, pollutants, mould and more.

The mechanical filtration system is also the best on the market as it is safe and does not emit any bad byproduct that makes breathing difficult.

Carbon Air Purifier

Carbon air purifiers are not the best filtration technology for helping people with COPD as they only remove odours from the air in everyday life, but they can take out harmful gases such as VOCs which are known to contribute to difficult breathing. 

This carbon and HEPA combination of filter types can be excellent for reducing triggers of COPD symptoms inside.

Ionizer Air Purifier 

Ionizer air purifiers use electrically charged ions to clean the air by weighing bad ones down, we do not recommend this type of purifier for helping with COPD as it can make the airborne particles stick to surfaces and settle if they are not cleaned properly, it also might emit a small amount of ozone which is very dangerous for people with COPD.

Ozone Air Purifier

Ozone purifiers use oxygen molecules to destroy bad airborne particle types which can worsen COPD, these can also give off dangerous ozone, however, so should not be used if you suffer from respiratory illnesses. 

How Else Can I Better The Air Quality Inside My Home For COPD? 

Air purifiers can help improve the air quality inside of your home to a degree to help reduce COPD symptoms from airborne particle types, but to help with breathing comfort further there are some other successful symptom management techniques you can integrate. 

Pros & Cons Of Using an Air Purifier For Asthma
  • Keep humidity below 50% - Keeping your humidity low in your home is one of the best ways to help a breathing condition, as it stops mould growing and dust mites by making the environment less comfortable. 
  • Never let second-hand smoke enter inside - Cigarette smoke can cause COPD and also worsen symptoms, so you should make sure this smoke never enter your home or it can make breathing difficult and impair lung function in some COPD patients. 
  • Keep it ventilated - Although purifiers can provide powerful filtration, don't forget the power of fresh air which can help move bad types of particle out of your home as the inside of your home is said to be up to five times more polluted than the outside.
  • Have an extractor in your kitchen - Emissions from gas stoves can be dangerous to breathe in and lead to a stressed airway, even in a healthy individual, an extractor can help remove this from the air with efficiency.
  • Vacuum often - Cleaning your home with a vacuum can take out dust mites and dust which make COPD irritation in individual people worse.
  • Remove potent air pollution particle types - Don't use strong kinds of chemicals to clean your home so as you can avoid polluting the air with airborne chemical types, instead opt for a lighter chemical or a natural one.

Final Words 

Overall, people with COPD who use an air purifier in their home will likely see an improvement in breathing thanks to the three-stage filtration system removing common particle types from the air that can make COPD symptoms worse such as breathing and coughing. 

Even though a high-quality air purifier will never cure COPD it can help with a form of treatment to stop airborne particulate irritating COPD patients. 

Kirsten Carter
Kirsten Carter is a freelance content writer who specialises in writing about travel, technology and health. When she's not traveling between her home of Tanzania and England, she writes for her blog Rightminded Travelling and features on a variety of different travel and technology sites.

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