What are PM 2.5 Particles and Why is Dangerous?

What are PM 2.5 Particles
By | December 23, 2023
5 min read

PM2.5 refers to tiny particles, which are 2.5 microns or less in width. A micron is a unit of distance measurement. To better visualize – imagine 3% of the average human hair diameter.

How does PM2.5 affect my health?

PM2.5 can penetrate the respiratory tract through the nose and throat, reaching the lungs.

Short-term exposure to small particles leads to eyes, nose, throat, and lungs irritation, coughing, sneezing, runny nose, and shortness of breath.

Long-term exposure to PM2.5 shows in the development of chronic bronchitis decreased lung function, and increased death from lung cancer and heart disease.

Those with respiratory and heart problems, children, and the elderly are at most sensitive to PM2.5.

Does an air quality standard for PM2.5 exist?

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for PM2.5 in 1997. The last revise was in 2012.

The short-term standard (24-hour or daily average) is 35 micrograms per cubic meter of air (μg / m3), and the long-term standard (average annual) is 12 μg / m3.

A microgram is a unit of weight. There are a million micrograms in a gram, and a pound is approximately 450 grams.

Ways to reduce my indoor exposure to PM2.5

You can start by learning how bad the situation is.

Step one is to check the air with a laser particle counter.
Step two is to check if the current filters are capable of removing PM2.5 from the air.

HEPA purifiers remove PM2.5—even the smallest particles of PM2.5.

If your house is far from a plant or roads with dense traffic and high car emissions, keep windows open for 15-20 minutes a day.
Duct cleaning and ERV system installation will be a great option to make. But if you are not sure of the need, start with Air Ducts and filter change.

The founder, CEO, and author of articles for the Green Ductors blog. Dedicated to his work, Dmytro strives to make people more aware of the importance of maintaining the best possible air quality. By treating readers like friends, he communicates even the most complex information in an easy-to-understand way to make your reading experience not only useful but also enjoyable. Check out the articles written by the hand of our founder Dmytro.

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