A Swedish invention may clear the air while you sleep to help asthma sufferers breath better without drugs.
Garnering recent buzz in health blogs and on websites such as WebMD, The Health Age, and Health.Infoniac, the Protexo machine, produced by Swedish company Airsonett, is used during sleep. While snoozing under the device, it delivers a flow of pure filtered air to remove common allergens that cause inflammation of the lungs, including dust mites and pet hairs.
In a UK study previously published in the journal Thorax, researcher John Warner from St Mary's Hospital and Imperial College London tested the device in a one-year study of 282 people from six European countries. Those who slept under the Protexo reported a drastic improvement in their quality of life -- and were less likely to be admitted to the hospital due to an asthma attack.
While the device has recently received European consumer safety approval, it is not yet available for private purchase but can be found in some medical facilities. At home use should cost around €2,339 for six months. This week in the UK, asthma experts are urging the National Health Service to begin leasing the device to patients.
"We're doing some further studies, looking at mechanisms, how it's affecting inflammation, how it affects quality of sleep," Warner stated.
Meanwhile, with the colder months ahead, you're likely to spend more time indoors and use your household heating system, which can allow air and particles such as pet dander, dust, and mold to recirculate through the home, providing continual exposure to allergens.
If you suffer from asthma, the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology recommends filtering out dust and other allergens by installing a high-efficiency furnace filter with a MERV rating of 11 or 12, and be sure to change it every three months.
In addition, keep your bedroom as free of allergens as possible by banishing pets and encasing mattresses and pillows with dust-mite-proof covers. Also use blinds instead of curtains.