Little monitoring has been conducted of temperature and humidity inside homes despite the fact that these conditions may be relevant to health outcomes. Previous studies have observed associations between self-reported perceptions of the indoor environment and health. Here, we investigate associations between measured temperature and humidity, perceptions of indoor environmental conditions, and health symptoms in a sample of New York City apartments. We measured temperature and humidity in 40 New York City apartments during summer and winter seasons and collected survey data from the households’ residents. Health outcomes of interest were (1) sleep quality, (2) symptoms of heat illness (summer season), and (3) symptoms of respiratory viral infection (winter season). Using mixed-effects logistic regression models, we investigated associations between the perceptions, symptoms, and measured conditions in each season. Perceptions of indoor temperature were significantly associated with measured temperature in both the summer and the winter, with a stronger association in the summer season. Sleep quality was inversely related to measured and perceived indoor temperature in the summer season only. Heat illness symptoms were associated with perceived, but not measured, temperature in the summer season. We did not find an association between any measured or perceived condition and cases of respiratory infection in the winter season. Although limited in size, the results of this study reveal that indoor temperature may impact sleep quality, and that thermal perceptions of the indoor environment may indicate vulnerability to heat illness. These are both important avenues for further investigation.
Sleep Quality Winter Season Summer Season Indoor Environment Outdoor Temperature
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
AQ’s contributions to this work were supported by the US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, via the Interdisciplinary Training Grant in Climate And Health (Grant No. T32 ES023770) and the Center for Environmental Health in Northern Manhattan (Grant No. P30 ES009089). JS’s work was funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (Grant No. GM100467).
Anderson M, Carmichael C, Murray V, Dengel A, Swainson M (2013) Defining indoor heat thresholds for health in the UK. Perspect Public Health 133:158–164CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Arena L, Mantha P, Steven Winter Associates, Inc., Karagiozis AN, Oak Ridge National Laboratory. (2010). Monitoring of internal moisture loads in residential buildingsGoogle Scholar
Bonnefoy X, Braubach M, Krapavickaite D, Ormand D, Zurlyte I (2003) Housing conditions and self-reported health status: a study in panel block buildings in three cities of Eastern Europe. J Housing Built Environ 18:329–352. doi:10.1023/B:JOHO.0000005757.37088.a9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Brauer C, Budtz-Jørgensen E, Mikkelsen S (2008) Structural equation analysis of the causal relationship between health and perceived indoor environment. Int Arch Occup Environ Health 81:769–776. doi:10.1007/s00420-007-0244-6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fouillet A, Rey G, Laurent F, Pavillon G, Bellec S, Guihenneuc-Jouyaux C et al (2006) Excess mortality related to the August 2003 heat wave in France. Int Arch Occup Environ Health 80:16–24. doi:10.1007/s00420-006-0089-4CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Franck U, Krueger M, Schwarz N, Grossmann K, Roeder S, Schlink U (2013) Heat stress in urban areas: indoor and outdoor temperatures in different urban structure types and subjectively reported well-being during a heat wave in the city of Leipzig. Meteorol Z 22:167–177. doi:10.1127/0941-2948/2013/0384CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Heffernan R, Mostashari F, Das D, Karpati A, Kulldorff M, Weiss D (2004) Syndromic surveillance in public health practice, New York City. Emerg Infect Dis 10. doi:10.3201/eid1005.030646
Hess JJ, Saha S, Luber G (2014) Summertime acute heat illness in U.S. emergency departments from 2006 through 2010: analysis of a nationally representative sample. Environ Health Perspect 122:1209–1215. doi:10.1289/ehp.1306796Google Scholar
Klinenberg E (2002) Heat wave: a social autopsy of disaster in Chicago. University of Chicago Press, ChicagoCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Koep TH, Enders FT, Pierret C, Ekker SC, Krageschmidt D, Neff KL et al (2013) Predictors of indoor absolute humidity and estimated effects on influenza virus survival in grade schools. BMC Infect Dis 13:1–8. doi:10.1186/1471-2334-13-71CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Levy JW, Suntarattiwong P, Simmerman JM, Jarman RG, Johnson K, Olsen SJ et al (2014) Increased hand washing reduces influenza virus surface contamination in Bangkok households, 2009-2010. Influenza Other Respir Viruses 8:13–16. doi:10.1111/irv.12204CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Madrigano J, Ito K, Johnson S, Kinney PL, Matte T (2015) A case-only study of vulnerability to heat wave-related mortality in New York City (2000-2011). Environ Health Perspect 123:672–678. doi:10.1289/ehp.1408178Google Scholar
te Beest DE, van Boven M, Hooiveld M, van den Dool C, Wallinga J (2013) Driving factors of influenza transmission in the Netherlands. Am J Epidemiol 178:1469–1477. doi:10.1093/aje/kwt132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tamerius JD, Perzanowski MS, Acosta LM, Jacobson JS, Goldstein IF, Quinn JW et al (2013) Socioeconomic and outdoor meteorological determinants of indoor temperature and humidity in New York City dwellings. Weather Clim Soc 5:168–179. doi:10.1175/WCAS-D-12-00030.1CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thompson WW, Shay DK, Weintraub E, Brammer L, Cox N, Anderson LJ et al (2003) Mortality associated with influenza and respiratory syncytial virus in the United States. JAMA. J Am Med Assoc 289:179–186CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Toftum J, Fanger PO (1999) Air humidity requirements for human comfort. ASHRAE Trans 105:641Google Scholar
Uejio CK, Tamerius JD, Vredenburg J, Asaeda G, Isaacs DA, Braun J et al (2015) Summer indoor heat exposure and respiratory and cardiovascular distress calls in New York City, NY, U.S. Indoor Air. doi:10.1111/ina.12227Google Scholar