Is Your Environment Making You Sick? Part III

damp environment

This series has covered the dangers of environmental wind and cold, but what about dampness?

In Colorado we don’t often consider the health impacts of a damp environment. After all, when we are blessed by a summer rainstorm, the water on the sidewalks typically evaporates within twenty minutes of the storm’s passing. Our environment is naturally hot and dry, but your indoor environment may be much wetter than you imagine.

Damp environments, whether hot or cold, can impact your body tremendously. Whether the dampness is coming from a leaking pipe or the natural dampness of a basement, wet environments cause their own set of health problems. Dampness, with its heavy, immovable quality, is the perfect conduit for heat and cold. When you have both cold and damp, or hot and damp, you may experience double the difficulty.

Fuzzy-headedness, stuffy noses, headaches, and musculoskeletal aches and pains are common ailments associated with damp environments. If dampness is not properly vented, it hangs in the air, potentially leading to an overgrowth of mold. Mold impacts the lungs and can irritate the skin as well. This kind of thick air also traps other pathogens, like dust, pollen, and pet dander.

Controlling damp environments requires vigilance. Using a dehumidifier in the basement is a good idea, and looking for ways to naturally open the space, either through a window or a fan system, may help. Dampness responds well to circulation, but because it is such a heavy substance, it requires a bit of artificial “lifting” through human measures.

If you are living in a damp environment, it is important to not compound the impact by creating a damp environment in your body. Ways to control dampness, whether hot or cold, are to avoid sugar, alcohol, dairy, refined grains, and processed food. Make sure you get plenty of exercise in fresh air, which will help you transform systemic dampness.

Living indoors often causes us to forget the affect climactic factors can have on our health. If you think your environment is causing you to feel sick, take this insight seriously. No matter what you put in your body, or how much exercise you get, living or working in an environment that makes you ill has a profound impact on your ability to gain traction in your recovery.

If you have questions about your constitutional climate, schedule an appointment with us to see if acupuncture and herbs might be able to help you optimize your environment for better health.