IoT's role in healthy homes
Americans spent almost half of their day at home in 2020, according to The New York Times. And, for folks working remotely, it's reasonable to assume they're in their house or apartment even more than that. That's a lot of time spent in one house or apartment! With this in mind, it should be obvious why keeping our homes safe is important to our health. Technology has made doing that easier than ever with an almost unfathomable array of smart home devices. So, how is internet of things (IoT) tech keeping us in tip-top shape at home? Let's take a look.
A brief introduction to smart homes
In a now-bygone era, if you felt a bit chilly, you got up and closed the windows, turned on a heater or started a fire. Should you find yourself sweating, you walked over to the fan and switched it on. Too dark or too bright? You closed or opened the shutters or curtains, manually turning the lights on or off.
Now, almost all of these things can be done digitally without lifting a finger, except to tap a few toggles on our phones or tablets. As Forbes explains, IoT sensors and technology that connect our domestic infrastructure to our smart devices make it possible for us to alter our home's environment at just the touch of a button. Here are a few ways this technology is being used to improve our health and comfort in our homes:
Previously, we needed to change our thermostats on the wall. Then, remote controls made that possible without having to fiddle with a keypad. Now, the aircon linked to our devices means we can alter a room's temperature from anywhere in the home. Proper cooling or heating is vital for good health as it affects metabolic processes (how our bodies use energy), and IoT has made controlling temperature easier than ever before.
First, there were candles, then gas lamps. Next, electrical lighting with manual switches. With IoT, we can control all our electric lights from our smart devices, turning them on or off or adjusting dimmers. IoT has even made it possible to open and close shutters remotely. Proper lighting is essential for regulating our circadian rhythms (our natural sleep-wake cycle) which dictate our sleeping patterns and energy levels. Smart home devices help keep us in the dark and show us the light when needed.
Apart from food and water, we need oxygen to live. Even the slightest variation in atmospheric composition can have hugely detrimental effects on our health. We can't control the air outside, but we can control it in our homes. Per Analytics Steps, carbon monoxide sensors connected to our smart devices tell us if there's a fire and smoke nearby, and gas detectors can alert us of a potentially dangerous leak somewhere. Humidity smart tech can tell occupants if there's been a sudden change in air moisture. All of these are able to work together to make sure the air we breathe at home is safe.
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