The danger of air pollution has been proven time again. The size of the particles directly relates to their health risks. The smallest particles, known as PM2.5, bypass the body’s natural defenses and enter the bloodstream. These tiny particles affect the heart and lungs. Therefore, people who live in areas with large levels of air pollution should take preventative measures to minimize exposure to these pollutants.
Health effects of air pollution
The health effects of air pollution are far reaching and varied. Exposure to air pollutants increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, inflammation, coagulation, and endothelial dysfunction. Exposure to air pollutants is also linked to a greater risk of respiratory diseases such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Air pollution is also linked to an increased risk of lung cancer and premature death. In addition to these effects, air pollution also increases the risk of respiratory infections and cancer.
Air pollution is a mixture of gases and particles that come from manmade sources. These include vehicle exhaust, smoke, road dust, industrial emissions, and pollen. Short-term exposure to air pollution is associated with numerous health problems, including coughing and wheezing. Exposure to air pollution is also known to cause a higher risk of strokes and heart attacks. Exposure to air pollution during pregnancy is linked to a greater risk of autism spectrum disorders in children.
Sources of air pollution
The effects of air pollution are not the same for everyone, but it is believed that certain individuals are more susceptible to the effects of pollutants than others. These individuals include children, pregnant women, older adults, and people with preexisting conditions. Additionally, people who live in low-income areas may be more exposed to harmful levels of air pollution. Some of these factors include proximity to industrial sources, poor nutrition, and stress.
Exposure to air pollution from vehicles, manufacturing processes, and volcanic activity creates soot. Soot is made up of tiny particles of chemicals and soils that react with sunlight and create smog. It may cause a variety of diseases. In addition to the health risks, it may aggravate existing health problems and even lead to death. Therefore, it is important to control air pollution levels from both indoor and outdoor sources.
Health effects of air pollution on children
Exposure to air pollution can cause many negative effects on children, including increased mortality. During the early stages of pregnancy, air pollution exposure can also cause premature birth and small, low-weight babies. Pollution also affects cognitive development and can lead to childhood cancer. The long-term effects of air pollution on children are not fully understood, but exposure to pollution during these early years can increase the risk of chronic diseases such as asthma.
Exposure to air pollution, particularly fine particles, is linked with changes in the expression of genes. This methylation change can be passed down to future generations. Furthermore, air pollution exposure increases the activity of monocytes, which play a key role in the formation of plaque and may predispose children to heart disease in adulthood. These findings are only the beginning. Future research needs to determine if air pollution causes these changes.
Health effects of air pollution on animals
Animals are more sensitive to the health effects of air pollution than humans. They need clean air to survive, including those in urban areas. Animals are vulnerable to endocrine disruptions caused by toxins such as PCBs and heavy metals. Pollution also damages organs, and can cause stress and lowered reproductive success. Some animals can even develop cancer when they are exposed to air pollution for a long period of time.
Some animals are particularly susceptible to air pollution, such as birds. Because birds spend so much time in the open air, they are exposed to higher levels of airborne particles than people. Because these extra fine particles can burrow deep into their lungs, they can die from suffocation. Moreover, pollution accumulates in the tissues of animals, weakening their immune systems and making them more vulnerable to a variety of diseases. Sadly, there are only a few studies that investigate the health effects of air pollution on animals.