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Can air purifiers (ionic) make allergies worse?

When I first started getting some allergies (sinus and skin) I bought an air filter with an ionic feature. I proceeded to have super bad allergies for the last 6 months, they just kept getting worse and worse, I stopped using it for over a month while waiting to get a replacement filter (rinsed it under water instead of vacuuming it out, oops) and didn’t get better. Then I found out I had a dust mite allergies and after eradicating my home of dust on a weekly basis felt much better for the last three weeks.

Well my replacement filter came and I started using my air purifier 4 days ago, all of my sinus allergies are back in full force.

Can part of my allergies be from the filter or ionic setting?

6 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Some air purifiers with ionizers produce ozone as a by product of the ionizing feature. The ozone would most likely be what is making things worse for you. The FDA allows a small amount of ozone to be produced by these machines, but many experts say any ozone for prolonged periods will harm your health. If you can shut off the ionizer, the purifier will most likely stop producing ozone. There are some really great ozone free ionizing purifiers, so if you look for another one, check those out. Or stay away from the ionizer all together to make it simple. Austin Air makes top quality purifiers, great for allergies, which purify a lot of sq. ft.- 1500 per unit. I think these are the best value. Best luck feeling better!

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  • 1 decade ago

    The filter might be stirring up dust and if you are very sensitive to ozone then the ionic setting is another possibility. Try to find out if your air purifier produces any ozone. I would turn it on and off on different days or on only when you are not home and see what happens. How high is the moisture level in your home? Does it have a basement? Excess moisture could help the dust mite population grow. Allergies can be caused by dust mites, mold, pets, and chemicals. has some air purifier ratings and allergy information.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I agree with John with on this about ionizer purifier making particles heavier. In know of many owners of cheap ionizer purifiers who have told me that there house seems dustier after using their purifier. Ionizer are great at moving dust around but not so good at removing it.

    Generally the filter is not to blame unless it needs cleaning/replacing. A dirt filter can cause problems as the dust mite feces are expelled into the air

    You need to get an air purifier that is able to remove at least 97% of air particles bigger than 0.3microns. In a multitude of independent tests the IQair Healthpro plus managed to remove at least 99% of particle of this size which includes all forms of dust mite based allergens.

    My advise is to stop using your cheap ionizer air purifier and move to a purifier that will actually help you allergies. If you don't feel like spending more on a new purifier then i would still try to follow these basic steps:

    1. Change your pillows, duvet and blanket to hypoallergenic versions. Or if you can't afford that then at least get new ones. Old pillows get contain up to 40% dust mite feces which cause your allergic reaction.

    2. Use a HEPA based vacuum to clean carpets or better yet rip up the carpets and have a wood or laminate floor.

    If you do feel like buying a purifier that will solve your allergy problems then i full recommend you read our list of the best purifiers on the market:

    Source(s): I teach customers about how to choose the right air purifier: Feel free to shoot me any question by email.
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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    If your air cleaner has a blower, it is stirring up the air in your home. You may have to find the source of this dust before you get any benefit from any air purifier. Typically, ionizers only change the charge of the dust in your home which is supposed to make those particles attach to more particles, become heavier and fall to the floor. The result is supposed to be cleaner air, but once the particles hit the floor, some of them discharge and become airborne again and the cycle starts over. In my opinion, a gimmick. This cycle of not cleaning the air could add to your symptoms.

    For real air cleaning, take a look at the Sun Pure SP-20C at Easy to understand operation. This system pulls your dirty air through a high efficiency filter and blows the clean air out the top back into the room. This is the same units used in hospital labs for its efficiency and effectiveness. I hope this helps.

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  • 4 years ago

    we've merely gotten a Honeywell Hepa clear out and it fairly works quite. My boyfriend has too much hypersensitive reactions and this has cut back them down extremely lots. i could recommend against an Ionic air purifier because of the fact I actual have heard that the ozone that it creates aggravates hypersensitive reactions and air passages. I pay attention a number of the ionic breezes have ozone guards, despite the fact that it does not sparkling out each and all the ozone.

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  • 6 years ago

    I'm a highly allergic person, who tests positive on IgE for nearly every grass and tree in the US Desert Southwest and the US Midwest. I normally have two or three months of miserable hell during allergy season. I bought this air filter and a Dyson DC25 vacuum, cleaned the living hell out of my apartment, and ran the air filter on full blast for three days straight. My allergy symptoms at home disappeared completely.

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