2. HUMIDIFIERS VS. DIFFUSERS
Which one do you need? Research shows BOTH! Let's talk about why.
The average house -- unless you live in one of those few truly wet climates in the USA -- is dry. Optimal humidity should be somewhere between 30-45%. If it drops beneath 30%, it's too low. Above 50%, it's too high. Why? A few reasons! First, various germs and bacteria either thrive in a very dry environment or a very moist environment.
Studies indicate various viruses thrive at low humidity levels. Those "winter illnesses" we've all come to know season after season are exacerbated by our indoor, dry, stale environment. Mucus membranes that dry out are simply more susceptible to viruses and bacteria invasion.
Fungi, mites, molds, and mildew will flourish in high humidity. Mite populations, for example, will explode around 80% humidity, but decline rapidly below 50% humidity. Most fungi need humidity around 60% or above to thrive.
If you want to keep them at bay, stay in that optimal zone throughout the year -- which can be tricky in the winter if you run a heater as those will dry out your house pretty quick! In those moist areas like Florida, check into a dehumidifier!
Humidifiers work by either releasing cool or warm mist in the air. Neither is truly "better" than the other. Most people have the simple portable units that can be refilled and placed in any room. Whole house humidifiers are available, too. It works by adding a fine mist to your air system, circulating it throughout the house. You can also get a hygrometer. They are cheap and effective at monitoring your indoor environment.
I've been asked repeatedly over the years if I put essential oils in my humidifier. I don't and sure don't recommend you do, either! See, water is a large molecule. When it exits a humidifier, it doesn't really rise and circulate. It flows up briefly because of your device, but then it falls to the floor and works to humidify as it evaporates.
Essential oils on the other hand, are so small, they are measured in Daltons (lighter than air particles like smog or city pollution but healthy). They rise up in the air and circulate throughout rooms. Putting them in the humidifier will do little more than anchor them to your carpet with the water, slowly evaporating over time.
Your essential oil diffuser is a MUST have for your oils! Make sure if it's not a diffuser from Young Living, that it has a stainless steel ionizing tablet in the bottom of it. The little coin acts as a dispersing agent vibrating at an ultrasonic frequency of 1.7 million waves per second, infusing the water with essential oils and creating a fine particle mist which will be incorporated into the air around you and circulate with your central air system, fans, and even your movement! Note: if you have Feather the Owl diffuser, you won't see this plate. This cute little guy uses a newer structural design and all you'll see is a hollow core in the center.
We've got both going pretty much all fall and winter and find them to be a necessity for our health and wellness. If you don't have a humidifier, remember you can just set on a tea kettle, run the shower, or run through your house with a spray bottle misting everything like a fairy. 😂