The Healthy House office is situated in a picturesque village called Ruscombe, near Stroud in Gloucestershire. There are no carpets in the building, as these tend to trap allergens such as dust mites. Instead, the floor is made from solid maple with an organic varnish.
The walls of the office building are all painted using organic paint, which reduces the risk of chemical 'off-gassing' (the effects of which can last for years). For the same reason, our windows are made from aluminium as opposed to uPVC. Even the toiletries we use (including hand wash, washing up liquid and cleaning products) are as natural as possible and free from harmful chemicals.
We are lucky enough to have a variety of air purifiers in the office to keep the air clean and healthy. Many offices have air conditioning units, which can harbour many allergens and bacteria which will only be re-distributed throughout the room. Air purifiers are healthier options all round, removing impurities from the air such as allergenic dust mite faeces, pet dander, mould spores and pollen spores. Some air purifiers even remove chemicals and VOCs. The Radic8 wall-mounted air steriliser kills viruses and bacteria, ensuring that office colds never get spread around!
During the winter months, many people are prone to S.A.D (Seasonal Affective Disorder). Many of us at The Healthy House have light therapy units on our desks to keep us focused, bright and breezy all day long!
Common allergy causes in the workplace
Do you feel that your office could be making you ill? Here are a few common causes of allergy symptoms at work:
- Dust mites may be hidden in carpets, curtains and furnishings. The allergen from their droppings can provoke sneezing, wheezing and a runny nose when released into the environment. Even walking on carpets can release allergens.
- Poorly ventilated buildings may lead to increased levels of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), pollen and other allergens.
- Dust build-up and mould in air conditioning systems can lead to allergens being released into the air.
- Carpets, MDF furniture and synthetic building materials can emit VOCs which can provoke adverse reactions in those with chemical sensitivities.
- Fumes from photocopiers and printers can cause reactions in asthmatics and those with a tendency towards chemical sensitivity.
- Pet allergens can be brought in on co-workers’ clothing, which may provoke reactions in the estimated 34% of the population with a pet allergy.
- Perfume on co-workers may lead to headaches and dizziness in MCS sufferers.
- Office plants can collect moulds; mould allergy can cause all sorts of symptoms from wheezing and asthma to depression, rhinitis and even panic attacks.
Give us a call for an informal chat on 01453 752216 and we'll be happy to talk you through some of the ways you can make your office more allergy-friendly.