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Exposure to Air pollution Can Impact Your Child’s Cognitive Ability

Approximately 2 billion children are currently living in areas where the air pollution level is more than the international limit.

Published: January 18, 2020 2:39 PM IST

By Lifestyle Staff | Edited by Juhi Kumari

Exposure to Air pollution Can Impact Your Child's Cognitive Ability
Delhi Air pollution

Air pollution has remained one of the gravest problems in the world and especially in India from the past few years. Known as one of the world’s largest killers, air pollution claims the lives of around 6.4 million people every year globally. Amongst them, an estimated 600,000 are children. If we go by the statistics of the World Health Organisation, approximately 2 billion children are currently living in areas where the air pollution level is more than the international limit whereas around 300 million stays in places where the pollution level is 6 times the international limit.

It has been found to cause more deaths than a combination of diseases including AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria does. Air pollution has already been linked to the onset of various health ailments. And recently a study published in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry has revealed that increased exposure to air pollutants and stress can cause cognitive problems in your kids.

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According to the researchers, a common air pollutant called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons can intensify the effects of early life stress in children and cause severe mental conditions like depression. Not only this, it can cause heart diseases and can aggravate the condition if you are already suffering from them. Putting added pressure on the lungs and heart, it can lead to a problem in blood supply.

Air pollution has both short and long term effects on human health. Temporarily, you can experience nausea, irritation in eyes, sneezing, skin rashes whereas in the long term, you may get asthma, heart disease, liver issues, etc. In today’s time, it has become almost impossible to protect yourself from air pollutants. You go out and vehicles on the road fill your lungs with poisonous carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, and nitrogen oxide. Additionally, improper disposal of biodegradable waste, which is a common phenomenon also contributes to air pollution.

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