As the scorching summer heat continues in Texas, many people seek refuge in air-conditioned spaces for relief. For some individuals, however, this otherwise pleasant respite can lead to a dreaded air conditioning cough. An air conditioning cough is somewhat common; there are many reasons why air blowing from your air conditioner (AC) might make you cough.
Why Does Blowing Air Make Me Cough?
Several factors can contribute to the phenomenon called air conditioning cough. When exposed to blowing air, particularly from air conditioners, many people experience a cough as a consequence of factors such as dry air, airborne dust and allergen particles, and cold air shock.
Dry air can lead to air conditioning cough for some people since air conditioners tend to reduce humidity levels indoors. When we breathe in dry air, it can irritate the respiratory tract, causing throat dryness; this can trigger a cough reflex. As for dust and allergens, they can accumulate in air conditioning systems, especially if not adequately maintained. When the air blows through the system, these particles circulate in the indoor air and may irritate the respiratory system enough to cause coughing. Cold air shock can also occur due to abrupt exposure to cold air that can cause the body’s airways to contract, narrowing air passages such that coughing results.
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Air Conditioning Cough Symptoms
The symptoms of an air conditioning cough can vary from person to person, but there are some common signs. A persistent dry cough that lingers when you spend time in air-conditioned spaces is the most obvious telltale sign. But other things such as having a scratchy or sore throat, wheezing or shortness of breath, and experiencing coughing fits can be signs that you suffer from air conditioning cough.
How to Get Rid of an Air Conditioner Cough: 5 Tips for Relief
There are several effective strategies to alleviate or prevent air conditioning cough. Consider the following five tips:
- Maintain Proper Humidity Levels: Keep indoor humidity levels optimally between 50-55% to help alleviate dryness.
- Ventilate the Room: Allow fresh air to circulate by opening windows and doors when the weather permits.
- Regularly Clean and Change Filters: Ensure your air conditioning system’s filters are cleaned or replaced regularly to reduce the buildup of dust and allergens.
- Use Air Purifiers: Consider using air purifiers equipped with HEPA filters to capture dust particles and other allergens in the air that can contribute to coughs.
- Gradually Adjust Temperature: Avoid abrupt temperature changes by gradually adjusting the thermostat to reduce any shock on your respiratory system.
BONUS: Get AC Units Serviced: Schedule regular maintenance for your air conditioning units to ensure they operate efficiently and do not release excessive dust or pollutants into the air.
Understanding the causes of air conditioning cough and taking preventive measures such as these can help mitigate coughing in response to blowing air from your AC.
Do you have questions about your AC system? Do you just need maintenance or are you considering replacing your AC instead? If you are in Austin, Texas, or the surrounding area and want answers to these or other AC-related questions, call on the experienced heating and cooling professionals at The Coolest LLC. The Coolest is your go-to professional HVAC installation and maintenance company based in Austin, with competent technicians on staff who can address any concerns you have regarding your HVAC system. The skilled experts at The Coolest will help you assess your heating and cooling needs for comfort you can count on all year round. Contact The Coolest LLC online at any time, or by calling 512-468-6140 during open hours.