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What On Earth Is Building Biology?

building biologyBuilding Biology??

In a nutshell, Building Biology is the science of the way that your building impacts upon your health.

Building Biology, for me, is another set of skills that I can use to improve the health and wellbeing of you – my client.

Sleeping Well – Or Are You?

In my work as a Chinese medicine practitioner, I have had many people tell me that they sleep well. However, a large percentage of them wake up feeling tired.

This can be caused by electromagnetic fields (EMF). EMF can prevent a person from fully resting at night-time, resulting in waking up tired.

The “big picture” view of this is that your body does not get the opportunity to heal properly and regenerate for the next day.

Of course, there are many other aspects to the way that EMF can impact upon your health. Some other examples are:

  • Grinding or clenching your teeth
  • Ringing in your ears
  • A sense of being agitated or restless

As a Building Biologist, I can audit your home – I visit you armed with my meters that measure magnetic fields and electric fields for “extra low frequency” (household wiring, lighting, appliances) and one that measures EMF from high frequencies (mobile phone towers, smart meters, wi-fi)…

Headaches? Frequent Colds? Finding It Hard To Focus Your Thoughts?

Again, your home or workplace could be impacting upon your health.

These can all be caused by the quality of your indoor air.

Did you know that on average, we spend 80-90% of our time indoors.

What is more, indoor air can be 10 times more polluted than outdoor air.

Astounding, I think.

You’ve seen the advertisement where her animal friends compliment Mrs Hippo about the lovely smell of her home? By using the product that she advocates, you are actually ADDING to the indoor air pollution.

Air fresheners act in two ways:

  1. They coat an air pollutant – they don’t get rid of them; and
  2. They inhibit your ability to smell – which means that they are changing your body’s normal functioning.

Mould also contributes to the pollution of indoor air. Mould does not have to be visible to be a problem.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are released into the air from building materials, furnishings, plastics, personal care products and cleaning products. They often have a large impact upon the indoor air quality, and because of their constant presence can contribute to a general feeling of being unwell.

As a Building Biologist, I can identify many causes for poor indoor air quality within your home and workplace. What is more, I can offer you solutions – ones that don’t cost the earth (on any level).

What About A New Building?

With an understanding of embodied energy, life cycle analyses and the ways that building materials and furnishings behave with regards to indoor air quality and EMF’s, I am able to advise you on choosing products that are beneficial to your health – whether it be at home, at school or at work.

How Do I Know If I Need A Building Biologist?

You may relate to many of the symptoms discussed above – this is a good reason to call me in.

Another really clear sign that something within a building that is affecting you is when you feel better once you are out of it.

This of course is different to feeling good because you are not at work (sadly not everyone loves their work as much as I do!). But if your symptoms ease off or disappear when you are out of the building and return when you are there again, we can certainly suspect the building.

Some examples:

“Bob” had a raging headache that became a severe migraine through the day when he was at work. However, by Sunday evening it had eased off. As soon as he got back to work it returned and increased in severity. This happened for three weeks. Then he found out that a “smart” meter had been installed three weeks earlier.

“Samantha” felt “off” every day, she felt that she always had a cold that never quite eventuated. Like Bob, on weekends, she felt fine. It turned out that there was a problem with the quality of the air at her workplace.

“Peter” moved into a new home. After living there for a short period of time, his friends noticed that he was emotional and angry, seemingly without cause. His new home was full of mould.

What to do…

“Sick Building Syndrome” is a term that describes the negative health effects of a building upon the health of the occupants.

If you suspect there is something going on, then I am most happy to come along to provide you with answers and solutions – wherever you are in Australia.

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Author of all content is Lucinda Curran, unless otherwise indicated.