We all keep hearing about air pollution and how that is detrimental to our overall health and wellbeing. Well,it’s true! But sadly the impact of pollution on our health has always been played down and ignored. But with 7 million deaths globally, we have finally started noticing. And guess what? Air pollution does a lot more than just give us a coughing fit, believe me! So to start with all the impact it has on our health, you need to understand the individual components present in this “air pollution.”

Ground-Level Ozone

This is formed when volatile organic components and oxides of nitrogen get in contact with the sun’s UV rays. Vehicular traffic, construction materials,and agricultural equipment are the major contributors ofground-level ozone. Everyday unknowingly we use a lot of household products that also give out such volatile compounds that pollute your indoor air as well. Some common products that give out VOCs are aerosol sprays, disinfectants, moth repellants, wood preservatives, and automotive products. This kind of pollutant can cause all sorts of ailments which can increase with constant exposure.  When I say ailments, I mean not only the common ones like wheezing , coughing fit, increased fatigue, chest pain, dry throat, headache,and nausea but also a lot more concerning ones like emphysema, bronchitis,and asthma. Severe exposure to this can even lead to permanent lung damage and decreased immunity.

Particulate Matter

Particulate matters are miniscule mixtures of liquid droplets (mist) and solid particles like soot, dust,and smoke. They are so small that you can fit 40-50 such particulate matter on the width of one strand of your hair (which by the way would be around 100 micrometers wide). So if we say PM 10 and PM 2.5 we are talking about particles which are less than 10μm and 2.5μm respectively.But what can such small things do to us, right? Well, these are by far the most harmful pollutants we should be wary of. They are so small that they can easily enter our system, bypassing all our natural defenses and go deep into our lungs and your bloodstream. Exposure to PM would lead to irritation in the airways, respiratory distress, asthma and wheezing. It can also decrease your lung function and lead to irreparable lung disease. PM exposure can also result in chronic bronchitis and irregular heartbeat. Continuous exposure to particulate matter can even lead to damage in the reproductive system or premature deaths among people with pre-existing lung or heart disease.

Toxic Gases

Imagine having to live in a smoke-filled room. The mere imagination would make you feel suffocated. However, our world is rapidly becoming just that-a gas chamber. Gases like Sulphur dioxide, Carbon Monoxide, and Lead are increasing rapidly in our atmosphere and entering our systems on an everyday basis. While carbon monoxide can reduce the oxygen content in your blood and impact your vital organs, Sulphur dioxide quickly enters your system and lead to coughing, wheezing, asthma, chest tightening, heart failure, eye irritation, nervous system damage,and anxiety issues. Air pollution is not as simple as it sounds. It can only be managed by constant monitoring and effective eradication strategies. Let us start with our family by monitoring the quality of the air they breathe. Let us all vow to make the world a better place to live in. Want to know more about our air quality monitors? Click here.
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