Skip to content
Air Purifiers for Allergies

Air Purifiers for Allergies

The air we breathe contains millions of microorganisms and nanoparticles that can cause allergies to flare up in some people. 

There are many reasons for that, like living in a polluted region of the city or near an industrial facility. Pollen, mould spores or dust mites or even having pets indoors can trigger your allergies. 

There have been many successful studies on the benefits of air purifiers for the relief of allergy symptoms. So can an air purifier at home really protect you from allergies? Let’s find out in our article below.

What Causes Allergies?

Allergies are a result of airborne allergens like pollen, moulds, pet hair and dander as well as dust and dust mites. When you breathe in these particles, they can trigger allergic reactions. 

These reactions are due to the immune function going into overdrive to get rid of the particles that entered your system. Common symptoms of allergies include watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing, coughing, and sore throat.

Allergy sufferers often consume medications that ease their symptoms, but these aren’t always the best option as they might cause unwanted side effects. 

Do Air Purifiers Help With Allergies?

The Environmental Protection Agency states true HEPA filters can remove 99.97% of dust, pollen and any airborne particles with a size of 0.3 microns or smaller. The National Centre for Biotechnology Information suggests the use of air purifiers with true HEPA filters work well for allergies.

By using a premium quality air purifier you are eliminating airborne allergens that can trigger allergies but it is important to note that the air purifier you choose has to use a true HEPA filter and preferably an activated carbon filter for VOCs to be truly effective.

Cheap, generic air purifiers are not very effective for allergens as they do not use true HEPA filters and the activated carbon filter, if included, does not contain enough carbon to filter VOCs properly so they will not be very effective in relieving you of your allergy symptoms. 

Do Air Purifiers Provide Allergy Relief for Pet Related Allergies?

Many people are allergic to pet hair and dander but what you might not know is that dander isn’t just pet hair, it is also dried saliva and skin particles. In other words, even if your pet doesn’t shed much, you might still develop an allergic reaction to its dander. 

Pet dander particles can be as small as 2.5 microns, so you won’t even notice them when you inhale them. What makes things more complicated is that they can be suspended in your air for long periods of time, which is the primary reason that they can invade your respiratory system in the first place. 

Even when they fall down, they will  land on the items you use every day, like clothes, furniture, carpets and drapes and when these are disturbed they can be re-distributed back into the air.

If you want to protect yourself from pet allergies, consider getting an air purifier powered by a true HEPA filter. This filter is capable of eliminating all airborne particles including pet dander. 

Only true HEPA filters have what it takes to get rid of particles as small as 0.3 microns or smaller. And while pet dander particles aren’t usually that small, a true HEPA filter will ensure that these particles are completely filtered out of your air.

Air Purifier for Asthma, Do They Help?

Asthma attacks may happen for a wide variety of reasons, and allergies are one of them. Allergies are 50% likely to cause an asthma attack in adult patients and 90% likely to trigger an attack in children.

Our range of Winix Air Purifiers are approved and endorsed by the National Asthma Council of Australia. The European Respiratory Journal also recommended the use of true HEPA Filters to reduce the symptoms of allergic respiratory diseases.

If you’re able to identify the cause of the allergies, you might want to consider eliminating its source with a quality air purifier. For example, dust, pet hair and dander, pollen, dust mites, pollen and other airborne pollutants.

There’s one thing to keep in mind, though: an air purifier in the room doesn’t necessarily mean that inhalers are gone for good. An asthma patient might still need medical treatment even when using an air purifier. 

Choosing the Best Air Purifiers for Allergies

Air purifiers do an excellent job at removing allergy-causing particles from the surrounding air in the room. 

Generally speaking, there are two factors that you need to keep in mind when shopping for an air purifier: room size and filter. 

Almost all air purifier manufacturers specify the recommended room size for each of their models, so make sure to check it out before purchasing a specific purifier.

As for the filter, there’s a wide range of filter types that can be found in air purifiers. This primarily depends on what type of particles you want to filter out. 

Filter types like true HEPA filters, ion filters, and UV air filters are often used. And while these filters excel when it comes to eliminating mould, dander, and dust particles, they don’t do anything to unpleasant odours in the room. Using an air purifier with a high quality activated carbon filter will help eliminate VOCs and unwanted odours.

Nevertheless, it’s important to keep in mind that allergies are caused by particles, not odours. 

On the other hand, carbon filters eliminate odours and certain particles, but they fall behind when it comes to getting rid of dust and pollen particles. 

Here’s a more in-depth breakdown of the different types of filters and what they’re good for:

  • HEPA filters. High-efficiency particulate air or HEPA filters remove most particles from the air, but not odours. 
  • Activated carbon filters. These are particularly good for removing gases. 
  • Ioniser filters. Ioniser filters are filters that utilise a high-voltage carbon brush or wire to eliminate particles from the air. The negative ions stick to the air particles, making them heavy enough to fall to the ground. Ionisers on their own are not a very effective form of filter as the particles are not trapped in a filter but rather fall to the ground. When used in conjunction with other filters they can be effective.. 
  • Electrostatic precipitation filters. These filters induce a charge in the particles, making them easier for filters to trap them in the HEPA filter.
  • Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) filters. These filters emit UV light which inactivates microbes, UV on it’s own does not filter the air nor does it do anything for non organic microorganisms. These can be effective when used internally in an air purifier to kill trapped microorganisms. 

Final Thoughts

To recap, an air purifier can make it less likely for you to develop allergic reactions by eliminating allergens from the air in your room.

However, it’s worth noting that air purifiers can only filter out airborne particles. If such particles have already landed on your furniture or carpet, using a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter is a good way to remove them.

To learn everything you need to know about air purifiers, have a look at our ultimate guide to air purifiers here.

Previous article Air Purifiers for Smoke
Next article Best Benchtop Water Filters