Abstract Details
Abstract Title
Air ions, well-being and cognitive performance: results of a cross-over experiment in children
Abstract Text
Background Studies indicate that higher concentrations of air ions may have a positive influence on wellbeing and health. In this study, effects of increased indoor levels of air ions on wellbeing and cognitive performance were investigated within an experimental indoor setting. Methods and material Healthy volunteers (n=10; 8-10 years) participated in a randomized, double-blind, cross-over experiment in two identically adapted living rooms. The increase in air ion concentrations was achieved by a mineral based wall paint. Subjects were exposed to different levels of air ions for two hours each (one week apart). Wellbeing and cognitive performance were assessed by standardized questionnaires (self-condition scale by Nitsch) and tests (general performance test by Horn). Levels of air ions, volatile organic compounds, CO2, and indoor climate factors (temperature, humidity) were determined by standardized measurement procedures. Results Measurements of air quality and indoor climate in the two test rooms did not reveal any significant differences except in concentration of air ions: Average total air ion concentration in room B (with special wall paint) was 2,800 per cm³ versus 1,200 per cm³ in room A. With regard to self-condition, in both settings almost no changes in tension but a significant decrease in readiness for exertion and recuperation of the test persons was observed during the experimental sessions. Tension and recuperation were significantly higher in test room B. Furthermore, one out of seven subtests of cognitive performance was solved significantly better, and for another subtest a tendency for better performance was observed in the room with the higher ion levels. Conclusions Higher levels of air ions might be associated with a less pronounced decrease in arousal during prolonged mental activity. This could lead to a better cognitive performance.
Author(s)
Hans-Peter, Hutter
Inst. Environmental Health, Med Univ Vienna
Hanns, Moshammer ( presenting )
Inst. Environmental Health, Med Univ Vienna
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