Air Pollution and Decreased Cognition

Dr Abhishek Chugh

28 Nov 2020
Air Pollution and Decreased Cognition

What Is Air Pollution?

Air pollution is a mixture of solid and gas particles in the air. When the pollutants in the environment increased, air pollution also increases. It affects both animals and plants. Air pollution generated due to two reasons. As we all know, Air pollution is increasing day by day. Air pollution is mainly caused by various anthropogenic activities and due to industrialization. if we seriously think about it, then we get to know that it can cause harmful effects not only on our external environment but on our internal environment as well. the air we are inhaling daily is it fresh...? the environment and surroundings we are living in is healthy or not harmful..?

There are lots of questions in our minds. but somewhere we are responsible for those questions. according to various research held worldwide proved that air pollution not only harms the cardiovascular and respiratory health and increasing the risk of early death from heart and lung diseases but it can also cause an effect on cognition and mental well being. so, there is very much a need to protect our environment for a healthy lifestyle.

Air pollution generated due to two reasons –

Human Made And Natural Sources of Air Pollution

1) Human-generated reasons

Pollution generated due to human beings is due to the following actions –

Smoke generated from vehicles

 Smoke emissions from vehicles example from cars, trucks. Pollution due to vehicles emits a lot of hazardous pollution. It is affecting our whole Earth. Burning of fossil fuels is the biggest reason of air pollution. This mainly happened because the burning of fossil fuels generated harmful gases and chemicals in the air.

Industrial reason

The burning of coal at home to make food or to heat water, also created air pollution.

Heat generated due to power plant

The power plants that are run by coal, produces a lot of pollution.

Smoking Habits

 Due to smoking, harmful gases are generated.

Natural Reasons of Air Pollution

1) Forests Fire

2) Smoke due to volcanic eruptions

3) When organic matter decomposes, it produces gases like methane which further creates pollution.

Which gases are the main causes of air pollution?

1) Carbon Dioxide

2) Carbon Monoxide

3) Sulfur Oxides

4) Nitrogen Oxides

The above are the gases mainly responsible for Air Pollution

What are the harmful effects on all living beings due to air pollution

1) Respiratory diseases –Due to air pollution, it is difficult to breathe. We have seen many times, Delhi is the most polluted city in India. Children and Women are very much affected by these. People are suffering from problems like - Asthama because of air pollution.

2) Heart diseases – People have developed many problems due to air pollution and cardiovascular diseases are one of them.

3) Skin diseases – Due to air pollution, people have developed skin diseases.

4) Irritation in eyes – We sometimes feel, the irritation or itching in eyes, this might be because of air pollution.

4) Cancer – Earlier cancer was a disease which was rarely happened to someone, but nowadays, the cases of cancer diseases are increasing and one of the reasons is air pollution. The number of cases of lung cancer has increased in the last years. Also, the cases of breast cancer in women has increased in the last few years. The other reasons for cancer – of course, includes – Soil Pollution, Water Pollution.

The Greenhouse Effect

As we know due to air pollution, the temperature of the earth is continuously increasing. The oxides of carbon, sulfur, nitrogen are the main reasons for increasing temperature. These harmful gases trap the heat on earth and prevent the heat from escaping out from the earth’s atmosphere. Due to this increase in temperature, ice is melting in glaciers, the water level in the sea is increasing and the hole in the ozone layer is getting bigger day by day. Because of this, harmful sun rays’ of earth are reaching on our earth’s surface.

The women and children are mostly affected because of air pollution.

1) Pregnant ladies might have bad effects on them due to air pollution, their baby might be suffering from the issue of autism.

2) One can suffer a problem of attention deficient.

3) Due to air pollution, people are suffering from a problem of attention deficiency.

4) ADHD symptoms in children can be observed because of this.

5) Old people have developed a risk of Alzheimer in them.

6) Due to air pollution – the cases of physical disabilities are increasing.

7) Youth living in polluted urban areas have developed the symptoms of neurobehavioral.

8) People of polluted areas have developed a risk of asthma, especially old people.

As we all know, the problem of air pollution is happening all over the world. Now, the question arises what are we truly doing to stop all these? Are we doing the actual and real efforts to stop all these?

So what should be the effective steps to control air pollution –

1) The government should make people aware that people should increase the use of public transportation is a good way to curb air pollution.

2) The industries should be fined which increases the pollution in the environment.

3) There must be air purifiers attached to the chimneys.

4) The vehicles should be banned which are not more than 10 years old as pollution.

5) The government must encourage people to make the use of the cycle as it generates zero pollution and also the health of people, will remain good.

But not only the government, people should be aware of the consequences of air pollution. We can take small steps like as we have written earlier-

1) Try to use a single vehicle when it is possible.

2) Don’t let your children out to play outside the house, when pollution is at the peak level in your city.

3) Plant more and more trees and create awareness among people.

4) Try to aware of more and more people about air pollution.

5) Get your vehicles checked from time to time.

Air pollution can be controlled only when the government and people will be serious to solve this problem.

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    Dr Abhishek Chugh

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