What Role Does a Humidifier Play When You Have a Cough?

What Role Does a Humidifier Play When You Have a Cough?

It’s cold and flu season and you can’t stop coughing. You’ve heard a humidifier might help, but you’re not sure how. What does a humidifier do for a cough? Does it help or hurt? Here’s what you need to know.

What Does a Humidifier Do for a Cough?

Flu viruses thrive at a certain humidity level — below 30%. That’s why the more dry winter months are also cold and flu season. Among other symptoms, this dryness in the air causes a dry, scratchy throat and a persistent cough.

A humidifier can put some of that missing moisture back in the air. Raising the humidity in your home stops the spread of viruses. It also helps to lubricate your dry throat and nose, allowing you to breathe more easily and to stop coughing.

Problems with Using a Humidifier for a Cough

A humidifier only helps your cough if you keep the humidity between 30% and 50%. Particularly with small, single-room humidifiers, it’s easy to push humidity levels too high, particularly in Georgia, which has notoriously high humidity for much of the year.

When the humidity is too high, it fosters bacteria and exacerbates allergies and asthma. Additionally, if you clean the humidifier improperly or not often enough, mold and bacteria can grow and be blown into your air. A humidifier should be cleaned every couple of days with distilled water, and the filter should be changed weekly.

The Solution

If you want to manage your cough without making yourself sicker, the solution is a whole-house humidifier/dehumidifier. What does a humidifier do for a cough? It lets you set your preferred humidity level and keep it in the Goldilocks zone: not too high and not too low. It keeps you breathing easy and reduces the risk of viruses and bacteria, as well as allergy and asthma attacks — thus preventing your cough.

Additionally, unlike a single-room humidifier, a whole-house model is easy to maintain. It only requires annual maintenance, which your HVAC technician can perform at the same time as your annual furnace tuneup.

For help finding the right humidifier for you and learning more about what does a humidifier do for a cough, contact us at Powers Heating & Air. Peachtree City’s home-comfort needs are our top priority.

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