What You Breathe Determines How You Think: Investigating Productivity and Indoor Air Quality


Working environments can have a huge impact on the work that we do: without a doubt, the air that we breathe can deeply affect the way in which we think. Clean, balanced air fuels the minds of your employees while in the workplace. Indoor office environments are certainly at risk for air pollution and excess amounts of carbon dioxide, which can lead to decreases in work efficiency. As managers and supervisors become more and more focused on promoting productivity, it is also important to continue cutting costs elsewhere in the business. Repairs and maintenance of your office heating, cooling, air conditioning and ventilation should be performed often to help you control of the air quality in your workplace – and to keep your employees alert and active while at work.

air quality

Indoor Air Quality: Fueling Your Brain for Productive Thinking and Working

Studies have shown that poor air quality – specifically, the high carbon dioxide levels in a crowded room such as an office – can greatly affect your ability to be productive and make intelligent decisions. As individuals in the crowded room continue to exhale, the levels of carbon dioxide rise – and the study discovered that it is increasingly difficult for humans to compete strategic management tasks in such a situation. It is possible to refresh and condition the air with the installation of equipment expressly designed to constantly maintain the chemical composition of the air. Optimization heating, cooling and ventillation equipment to increase productivity can have fantastic long-term effects – yet some companies find such equipment out of their short-term budget range.

If your company cannot currently cover the cost of new equipment, one of the quickest fixes is to have your current equipment inspected by a professional. In fact, perhaps you already have the proper equipment installed to maintain a healthy indoor environment, but it is not well-maintained or needs thorough, professional cleaning. Other options for promoting productive thinking and working are keeping windows open to let fresh air in, or bringing hearty houseplants into the working environment to digest the excess carbon dioxide into the air.

How Does Poor Air Quality Affect Your Health?

Indoor pollution can inflame the inner airways, and lead to damage within your lungs. Such damage can impair your immune system’s ability to function correctly, and your immune response levels will decrease, making it difficult to recover from sickness. Also, the oxygen carrying capacity in the body is decreased, which also impedes the process of covering from illness. In fact, two million Americans die each year from illnesses and other poor health conditions that can be attributed directly to air pollution issues. Employees need to be able to focus on their work and fuel the internal chemical reactions that allow their minds to make smart business decisions, so the investments that make better air quality possible are indubitably worth it.

Airborne Aggravants: The Annoyances of Poor Air Quality

Even if you are only exposed to a mild amount of air aggravants, it is important to consider how they may affect your health in the short-term. For example, poor air quality may lead to foul or unpleasant odors in your workspace, which can be distracting even on a subconscious level. Furthermore, any allergies or mild reactions to dust, seasonal plants and mildew can be exaggerated through constant exposure to poor air quality. Employees often take sick days or other leaves from office to recover from these illnesses and allergy symptoms, which can be prevented through proper maintenance of your office environment.

Taking Action: How to Get Cleaner Air in Your Office

When planning to improve the air quality of your office, onsider what particular risks your office faces because of seasonal patterns, climate changes, and allergens that are within your geographic area. Indianapolis heating and cooling specialists will be able to help you determine what kind of risks your office or business space faces in terms of poor air quality – especially taking into account the need for your office workers to be productive and feel comfortable while on-the-job.

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