Sick Building Syndrome: Is your workplace making you sick?

Sick Building Syndrome: Is Your Office Making You Ill? (Infographic)

Whether it’s the result of the Sunday night blues, an impending deadline or an overbearing boss, we’ve all had days where going to the office feels like a threat to our health. But beyond the daily slog and stress of a working day, did you know that the actual building you work in could be making you feel ill?

Beginning in the 1970s, people began to report strange symptoms that only appeared after spending time in particular buildings – most commonly, their office building. These symptoms included eye, throat and nose irritation, headaches, and dizziness and nausea, along with general feelings of fatigue and ill health. Often, these symptoms would improve or disappear entirely once employees left their workplace.

In 1984, the World Health Organisation coined the term “Sick Building Syndrome” to describe these symptoms, believing that flaws in the designs of new buildings were to blame. Ongoing oil embargos had caused energy prices to skyrocket. To counter this, planners wanted to make buildings more energy efficient, which they achieved by reducing outdoor air ventilation. Unfortunately,  this had a knock-on effect: more airtight buildings meant that chemical pollutants like VOCs, and biological contaminants such as bacteria and mould could build up to the extent that they started to affect the health of employees. Indoor air quality worsened, with air indoors often 2-5 times more polluted than the air outside.  On top of this, other conditions in office buildings exacerbated these problems; for instance, photocopiers emit ozone which in high concentrations can cause breathing difficulties.

Sick Building Syndrome is more prevalent in open plan offices than anywhere else, and with 70% of office buildings now employing an open floor plan, it isn’t going anywhere. The constant noise and distraction in open offices exacerbates symptoms like headaches and poor concentration. Workers also experience the infamous office temperature wars, where everyone is either too hot or too cold. Plus, being in constant proximity with colleagues means if one person gets sick, everyone else does as well. All this combined with poor lighting or bad ventilation is a recipe for disaster. The end result is that people working in open plan offices take 62% more sick leave.

To help you learn more about Sick Building Syndrome, we’ve put together this helpful infographic at Paint Inspection. It tells you everything you need to know, including the symptoms, causes, and the costs to employers. We’ve also shared some handy tips to improve your office environment and reduce these symptoms.


Autumn 2017 Newsletter

                    Read our Autumn 2017 newsletter here by clicking on the image where you can find more information about our company and services.

Paint Inspection Ltd awarded Southport Pier

Southport_Pier_1Paint inspection Ltd are pleased to announce the award of Southport Pier and working with Sefton Council.

The project will run through 2017 and 2018 with our team providing weekly inspections and technical support throughout the project.

The Pier is a Grade II listed and first opened in 1860. It spans a length of 1,108 metres (3,635 ft) and is the second longest in Great Britain. It was listed at Grade II on 18 August 1975.

Further ICorr level 3 accreditations

A big well done goes to John Donaldson and Abdul Mumuni who have both achieved ICorr level 3 status

John has been with us for around 3 years and came to us as an ICorr level 2 along with IRATA level 3. Johns commitment to the industry and his hard work meant ICorr level 3 was an obvious step up.

Abdul joined us back in 2013 also as a ICorr level 2 and once again has shown his commitment to the industry and his technical expertise to gain Level 3 status.

Director Andrew Patterson achieves further NACE accreditation

Paint Inspection Ltd are pleased to announce that our Director, Andrew Patterson, has achieved accreditation from the National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE) as a Senior Corrosion Technologist; one of the highest distinctions awarded by the NACE.

The certification covers all facets of corrosion,  combining technical training with technical experience to ensure the highest level of academic and practical knowledge over multiple areas of corrosion and its control.

We’re all very proud of Andrew for the hard work he has been required to undertake in order to gain this accreditation. It also demonstrates our dedication to ensuring the highest levels of on-the-job knowledge and ability at all levels of the organisation.

Picture of the NACE logo

1 2 3 4