What is the Impact of CO2 on Your Health & What Role to Gas Sensors Play?

CO2 is everywhere around us, it’s in fizzy juice, fire extinguishers and even in the air we breathe, as it is a naturally produced gas. With these facts, you’d think that CO2 gas is pretty safe and for the most part it is. The issue lies in inhaling too much CO2, a great solution for protecting yourself is to install gas sensors in the home or workplace.

Symptoms of High CO2 Exposure

The symptoms of CO2 exposure can include;

  • Dull headache
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Confusion
  • Blurred vision
  • Loss of consciousness

CO2 poisoning can be even more dangerous for people who are sleeping or intoxicated.


Hypercapnia, also known as CO2 retention, where there are abnormally high levels of CO2 in the blood. This will usually trigger a reflex that will increase the breathing and bodies access to oxygen. If this reflex fails it can be fatal. This condition is most commonly caused by breathing in excessive amounts of CO2, so if you don’t remove yourself from the effective area that reflex may do you more harm and could cause you to inhale even more CO2. Symptoms of hypercapnia could mean you’re in trouble, here are the symptoms to help you spot it;

  • Flushed skin
  • Full pulse
  • Shortness of breath
  • Abnormal rapid breathing
  • Premature vascular contraction (PVC)
  • Muscle twitches
  • Hand flaps
  • Reduced neural activity
  • Raised blood pressure

As hypercapnia progresses disorientation, panic, hyperventilation, convulsions, unconsciousness and eventually death will follow.

What Are the Effects of CO2?

CO2 can have hazardous effects if too much is inhaled. Carbon dioxide most commonly enters the body through inhalation and skin contact (dry ice).

Effects of Short Term Exposure

The short term effects of being exposed to too much CO2 include;

  • Suffocation by displacement of air
  • Incapacitation and unconsciousness
  • Headaches
  • Vertigo and double vision
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Tinnitus
  • Seizures

It can also cause death if there is enough exposure.

Touching liquid CO2 (dry ice) can cause frostbite and blisters.

Effects of Long Term Exposure

Prolonged effects of CO2 can also cause more long term effects, such as;

  • Changes to bone calcium
  • Changes in body metabolism

Preventing CO2 Poisoning with Gas Sensors

CO2 exposure can be hard to spot, especially when the symptoms can commonly be associated with other illnesses or just generally feeling unwell. This can be especially hazardous if the CO2 leak is in the home, as symptoms may encourage some to go to sleep to try and feel better.

One of the best ways to protect yourself against CO2 poisoning is with gas sensors. These have been created and adapted to detect the levels of CO2 within a particular area. These have been used in different industries for years but more recently, have become more readily available for the home.