London, Dec 12:
People living in more energy efficient homes have a greater risk of asthma, new research has found.
“We have found that adults living in energy efficient social housing may have an increased risk of asthma,” said researcher Richard Sharpe from University of Exeter Medical School in Britain.
“Some people, particularly those living in fuel poverty, are unlikely to heat a building enough – or ventilate it sufficiently – to prevent the presence of damp and mould, factors that we know can contribute to asthma,” Sharpe explained.
The research team assessed data from the residents of 700 properties in Cornwall.
The researchers pointed out that poorly ventilated homes are also likely to increase people’s exposure to other biological, chemical and physical contaminants.
The study pointed to other possible factors which can affect health in homes with high humidity, such as house dust mites and bacteria.
Besides, the behaviour of occupants can increase the indoor humidity at a property, a problem which is sometimes worsened by energy efficient efforts to seal cracks and gaps, the researchers noted.
The study appeared in the journal Environment International. (IANS)