THE SICK BUILDING SYNDROME
Sick building syndrome or SDS is the condition when the people occupying a certain building or part of a building start getting various nonspecific symptoms that occur in the occupants of a building and the symptoms directly correlate with the amount of time they spend in the building.
This generally increases sickness absenteeism and also decreases the work productivity of the people in the building.
The symptoms are characterized into -
1) SBS or Tight Building Syndrome
2) Building-related disease, when the symptoms of diagnosable illness are identified
and attributed directly to airborne building contaminants.
3)Building- associated Symptoms
Signs and symptoms of the sick building syndrome
The sick building syndrome leads to a lot of problems and symptoms including headache, dizziness, nausea, irritation in the eye, fever, and less productivity among the people working in the building, among other things. Generally, in the case of the sIck-building syndrome, the cause of these symptoms is not known. It just happens that you see repetitive symptoms and problems in people repeatedly which are called Building - associated symptoms
Signs and symptoms of the building-related disease
There are some diseases that can be attributed directly to the health of the building and these are called building-related diseases
Legionnaire's disease - Legionnaire disease happens when the cooling tower is infested with legionella organisms. Legionella organism is also responsible for Pontiac disease which majorly affects the young occupants of the building while legionnaire’s disease affects the elderly.
Apart from this, Humidifier fever is caused by breathing in water droplets from humidifiers heavily contaminated with microorganisms causing respiratory infections
As clearly seen from the above statements, the causes of these diseases are from contaminated air, i.e. air from an infested source.
The contaminants can be from outdoor sources i.e from the exhausts of cars, from exhausts of buildings, etc.
The most common contaminant of indoor air includes volatile organic compounds (VOC).
VOCs include upholstery, paints, and generally anything that has an aroma for eg: sanitizers, alcohol, deodorants, perfumes, coffee, etc. all come under VOCs, and VOC buildup inside a building has been deemed harmful.
Contaminants of air can also be biological contaminants such as bacteria, fungus, etc. which can cause fever, chills, cough, chest tightness, muscle aches, and allergic reactions
PREVENTION AND CONTROL
Increase the ventilation rates and air distribution. The heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems should be designed to meet ventilation standards in the local building codes. The HVAC system should be operated and maintained properly to ensure that the desired ventilation rates are attained.
Removal or modification of the pollutant source can be carried out by routine maintenance of HVAC systems, replacing water-stained ceiling tiles and carpets
Air cleaning can be a useful addition to controlling air pollution. Air cleaning can be performed by ensuring uncongested interiors. This can be done by installing filters in the AHUs ensuring that clean air circulates throughout the building
We at Clairco have built systems that take care of biological contaminants as well as systems which take care of the outdoor and indoor contaminants
Our patented product, Nanoclair takes care of the decontamination and depathogenization of biological contaminants, and our filters filter out the indoor and outdoor contaminants in the air. Thus making the air you breathe free of contaminants and free of pathogens.