Air conditioning is essential to your comfort in your home during the summer, especially in California. However, you may not realize that there are health benefits of air conditioning too. Here are five surprising health benefits you get from keeping your home cool.

1. Prevent Heat Illness

Heat illness is a big problem in the summer. There are more heat illnesses than just heat stroke. Heat exhaustion and heat cramps can also develop in those that get too hot and struggle to regulate their body temperature. Heat illness is especially common in children and the elderly, who are less able to regulate their temperature than adults. Fans aren’t enough to help many children and seniors stay cool, because their body is less efficient when sweating. They may require air conditioning to be at a safe temperature.

While those who are sick or of a vulnerable age are most susceptible to heat illness, even healthy adults can develop heat illnesses that could lead to serious symptoms or death.

2. Prevent Dehydration

When you sweat, you lose water and salts. Replacing both can be a struggle for some people, especially those who perform manual labor for a living or who have health conditions that affect their hydration. You can avoid this problem simply by using air conditioning to prevent sweating in the first place.

3. Reduce Allergic Reactions

If you’re allergic to mold, specifically, an air conditioner can help reduce your allergy symptoms. Mold responds well to high-heat conditions and releases spores when they grow. These spores are what trigger most mold allergies, so reducing them can really help you manage your symptoms.

4. Reduce Symptoms of Heat-Related Symptoms

Heat can trigger the symptoms of specific illnesses. For example, those with multiple sclerosis may find that their symptoms are worse when they are hot. Similarly, those with fibromyalgia, Friedreich’s ataxia, COPD, asthma, and several other conditions may find that they are more uncomfortable when they are warmer. In some cases, exposure to high heat conditions can actually make an illness worse, and not just make the symptoms worse.

5. Sleep Easier

Many people have trouble getting their full eight hours of sleep every night. For some people, insomnia is exasperated by heat. When they are too hot, it’s just another distraction from sleeping. Keeping the house cool can help, and so can tools like cooling pillows.

Be Sure to Control Humidity

Have you heard that air conditioning can also have negative health impacts? Usually, when people talk about the negative impacts of air conditioning, they are actually talking about the problems of high humidity. For example, those who argue air conditioning contributes to mold are actually talking about how mold responds in summer due to high humidity levels. The cool from the air conditioning actually helps to keep mold under control.

Air conditioning can contribute to high humidity but is rarely the main cause of it. You can keep your home cool and keep it at the proper humidity if you use a dehumidifier.