Negative air ionization therapy

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Negative air ionization therapy (NAIs) uses air ionisers as a non-pharmaceutical treatment for respiratory disease, allergy, or stress-related health conditions. The mainstream scientific community considers many applications of NAIs to be pseudoscience.[1][2][3][4][dubious ] Many negative ion products release ozone, a chemical known to cause lung damage. [5]


For Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a randomized controlled trial (RCT) comparing high (4.5x1014 ions/second) and low (1.7x1011 ions/second) flow rate negative air ionization with bright light therapy found that the post-treatment improvement percentage was 57.1% for bright light, 47.9% for high-density ions and 22.7% for low-density ions.[6] An older RCT conducted by the same authors also found air ionization effective for SAD.[7] A 2007 review considers this therapy "under investigation" and suggests that it may be a helpful treatment for SAD.[8]

An RCT comparing the short-term effects of bright light, an auditory stimulus, and high and low-density negative ions on mood and alertness in mildly depressed and non-depressed adults found that the three first (active) stimuli, but not the low-density placebo, reduced depression on the Beck Depression Inventory scale.[citation needed] The auditory stimulus, bright light, and high-density ions all produced rapid mood changes - with small to medium effect sizes - in depressed and non-depressed subjects.[9]

A 2008 clinical trial showed that negative ion generators produced a smaller percentage of change on SIGH SAD compared to LED photo-therapy.[10] A separate randomized placebo-controlled study published in May 2010 found that the difference between high-density ion therapy and placebo (dim red light and low-density ions) was not statistically significant. The study concluded that bright white light therapy was significantly more effective than negative ion therapy for treating SAD.[11]

Researchers have continued to cite a dearth of evidence about the effects of negative air ionization. "The presence of NAIs is credited for increasing psychological health, productivity, and overall well-being but without consistent or reliable evidence in therapeutic effects and with controversy in anti-microorganisms," researchers wrote in a 2018 article published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Alexander, Dominik D.; Bailey, William H.; Perez, Vanessa; Mitchell, Meghan E.; Su, Steave (9 September 2013). "Air ions and respiratory function outcomes: a comprehensive review". Journal of Negative Results in BioMedicine. 12: 14. doi:10.1186/1477-5751-12-14. PMC 3848581. PMID 24016271.
  2. ^ "Pseudoscience Sells". 14 September 2011.
  3. ^ Goldacre, Ben (2003-07-17). "The truth about oxygen". The Guardian. Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  4. ^ "Wonky Water Bunk".
  5. ^ My Video Got 2 Companies Shut Down! (And even worse negative ion products). YouTube. 19 January 2021. Retrieved 26 January 2021.
  6. ^ Terman, M.; Terman, J. S. (2006). "Controlled Trial of Naturalistic Dawn Simulation and Negative Air Ionization for Seasonal Affective Disorder". American Journal of Psychiatry. 163 (12): 2126–33. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.163.12.2126. PMID 17151164.
  7. ^ Terman, M.; Terman, J.; Ross, D. (1998). "A Controlled Trial of Timed Bright Light and Negative Air Ionization for Treatment of Winter Depression". Archives of General Psychiatry. 55 (10): 875–82. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.55.10.875. PMID 9783557.
  8. ^ Westrin, ÅS.; Lam, R. (2007). "Seasonal Affective Disorder: A Clinical Update". Annals of Clinical Psychiatry. 19 (4): 239–46. doi:10.1080/10401230701653476. PMID 18058281.
  9. ^ Goel, N.; Etwaroo, G. R. (2006). "Bright light, negative air ions and auditory stimuli produce rapid mood changes in a student population: a placebo-controlled study". Psychological Medicine. 36 (9): 1253–63. doi:10.1017/S0033291706008002. PMID 16756690. S2CID 22291389.
  10. ^ "A Trial of Negative Ion Generation Versus Light-Emitting Diode Phototherapy for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)". Retrieved 2009-03-09.
  11. ^ Flory R, Ametepe J, Bowers B (May 2010). "A randomized, placebo-controlled trial of bright light and high-density negative air ions for treatment of Seasonal Affective Disorder". Psychiatry Res. 177 (1–2): 101–8. doi:10.1016/j.psychres.2008.08.011. PMID 20381162. S2CID 10737694.
  12. ^ Jiang, Shu-Ye; Ma, Ali; Ramachandran, Srinivasan (October 2018). "Negative Air Ions and Their Effects on Human Health and Air Quality Improvement". International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 19 (10): 2966. doi:10.3390/ijms19102966. PMC 6213340. PMID 30274196.