Winter is flu season
The winter puts a strain on every immune system, regardless of your age. That is why we need to take good care of ourselves. Healthy eating, plenty of fresh air, sun and a good room climate are particularly important in winter when we spend most of the day indoors. This time of year puts a considerable strain on children’s health in particular: their immune system is not fully developed yet and because of this, their defences are not strong enough either. As a result, a child can contract up to 12 infections a year.
Sick children and sleepless nights
Runny nose, cough, fever, watery eyes and dry mucous membranes causing irritation of the airways – every parent probably knows the symptoms of a cold, flu or even bronchitis only too well. Being woken up in the night by a child crying because they can’t breathe properly. By a child wanting a drink because their throat is hurting from coughing so much. Or a child whose runny nose needs to be wiped every half an hour. Having just got back to sleep, you are woken up once more and the whole thing starts all over again.
When children are ill, the adults suffer too. It’s particularly difficult for very young children as they can’t really tell you what symptoms they have got. Parents will try everything to provide their little ones with relief – from putting a raw sliced onion in the room to nasal spray with saline solution and raising the mattress at the head end. Nothing helps.
How dry air affects children’s well-being
In all the effort to nurse a sick child back to health, the most fundamental things can sometimes be forgotten. For there are various factors which determine whether a child remains healthy or becomes ill. Indeed not many people are aware of the importance of having an optimum room climate, especially in relation to children’s physical condition. The health of a child is not only dependent on temperature but also on relative humidity. If the air is too dry for a long period of time – which is often the case in winter when you have the heating on – it will dry out both the skin and also the airways. In turn, dry mucous membranes are conducive to infection with viruses such as influenza or rhinoviruses as drying out impairs our defences.
It is important to know that fluctuations in room climate affect children much more than adults as the water in a child’s body constitutes up to 75% of the child’s body weight. Besides irritation of the airways, dry air can also cause other unpleasant symptoms: dry, burning eyes, dry and itchy skin as well as scaling and rashes, worsening of neurodermatitis symptoms, headaches and sleep disturbance.
Which humidifier to use in a child’s room
A dry indoor climate also favours small particles such as viruses that fly around in the air: in a dry environment, viruses are able to spread much quicker and remain active for longer than they do in a room with optimum humidity of between 40 and 60%. This leads to an increased risk of infection. When there is optimum humidity indoors, small particles such as cold viruses become bound to the water droplets and then fall to the ground so that they can no longer be breathed in. So a humidifier can help to reduce the spread of viruses.
Now it is a matter of deciding which is the best humidifier for a child’s room. When it comes to electronic devices in a child’s room, the most important factor is the safety of your little ones. Therefore you should choose a humidifier that presents the least risk – and that is why we recommend that you get an evaporator. The advantage of an evaporator is that it only emits cold water vapour so there is no risk of scalding. During the evaporation process, the air only absorbs as much water as it needs for the current temperature. The moisture-enriched air is released back into the room, thus ensuring a better indoor climate.
And that’s not all: an evaporator is energy-efficient and extremely quiet which can be vitally important in helping a child sleep well. Stadler Form evaporators are particularly suitable for a child’s room as they all have dimmable LEDs. In addition, it is possible to add essential oils which can also have a positive influence on the healing process.
See how our evaporator Oskar humidifies the air.
An ultrasonic nebuliser can also humidify the air in a child's room very effectively. Because it only blows cold mist into the air, there is no risk of being scalded by hot vapour or water. However, the following points must be heeded when using a nebuliser. A nebuliser must be refilled with fresh water every day and needs to be cleaned on a weekly basis. In addition, the anticalc cartridge must be replaced regularly in order to ensure good hygiene and act as a barrier to germs.
Relief for cold and allergy sufferers
If, besides the dry air, a child also suffers from allergies, it is wiser to use an air washer rather than a conventional humidifier. An air washer enriches the air with moisture too – but it also cleans dirt particles from the air at the same time. The evaporator discs turn in water and filter contaminants and particles – such as dust or pollen, for example – out of the air. We would recommend our air washer George as he is super low-maintenance since you can put his disc pack and water base in the dishwasher.
Watch the following video to see how air washer George humidifies and cleans the air at the same time.
What is even more important than using a humidifier if a child is already ill is using this type of device preventively. It is important to have a good indoor climate to start with in order to prevent viruses and bacteria from settling at all. That means ensuring that the humidity is always between 40 and 60% as with sufficient humidification, mucous membranes are better able to act as a barrier to viruses and bacteria.
Find out more about choosing the right humidifier in our blog article "How to choose a humidifier, tips and recommendations to purchase". You can also contact us directly for personal advice. We would be pleased to advise you over the telephone or by e-mail so that in future, you can enjoy restful sleep again and your children will be able to start the day well-rested.