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How pollution affects us

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people wearing surgical mask
people wearing surgical mask

Pollution is a problem that appears in a global panorama today. We do not stop hearing all the time in the media that there are measures to be taken around the world to try to reduce the gigantic levels of pollution that are affecting the health of the planet and all the living beings that inhabit it. Human beings, as it could not be otherwise, we are not exempt from this risk.

There are many reasons why the planet, which, let’s remember, is the only inhabitable one that we have, is dying. The worst of all is that the absolute culprits of this hopeless fate are us.

There is an overpopulation on Earth. Metaphorically, we could illustrate it as those days in which the train is filled to the brim and we can hardly move or breathe. Now let’s imagine that on a global level and let’s add that all those people are influencing our daily actions to pollution. Perhaps, on an individual level, leaving a plastic bag abandoned in the woods may seem like an insignificant fact, but let’s think about the consequences of all that overpopulation we are talking about leaving its garbage lying in natural spaces. Sounds catastrophic, right?

Obviously, all that trash is a very small point of this problem. The increase in industrial development has meant the creation of thousands of factories around the world that do not stop daily expelling infinities of highly toxic and radioactive products that end up dispersed by the air and the seas, causing damages that have become irreparable.

Of course, we can not forget the cars, those responsible for air pollution, which burn fuels by releasing highly polluting gases into the air that we breathe at all times. Something that also happens with the use of air conditioners, heaters and aerosols.

But what is the real effect of pollution on our health?

Unfortunately, pollution is a silent killer that is poisoning us little by little without us being aware of it. It is not something that is seen by the naked eye (except if we go to a point away from the city, which will leave us a raw vision of the black cloud of toxic gases we breathe) or that we can touch and this is precisely what makes us not be aware of the danger and, therefore, expose ourselves more to it without putting any type of solution.

The problems generated by pollution in our health are mainly respiratory and cardiovascular . Respiratory risks can range from simple discomforts such as coughing, phlegm, wheezing or a sensation of suffocation and pressure on the chest; to diseases of lesser or greater severity such as asthma, acute bronchitis, chronic bronchitis, pneumonia or even lung cancer.

All this is due to the fact that the effect of pollution on our respiratory system is to narrow the respiratory tract , which produces obstructions that lead our body to make a greater effort to perform their corresponding tasks. Therefore, our organs notice that there is a problem and develop defense systems, such as an abnormal production of mucus, which eventually translate into infections and other damages.

In the cardiovascular aspect, we can notice symptoms such as tightness or punctures in the chest, palpitations, tachycardia or unusual fatigue. This is because the oxygen received by the red blood cells is contaminated, so all this toxicity is transported by our body, so it can affect any organ, causing inflammations that can lead to diseases in the coronary arteries, abnormality in heart rhythms or congestive heart failure.

All this, even though it may seem almost insignificant in the short term, if it is not treated and worsens, it can lead to truly serious consequences for health that can even be fatal.

On the other hand, pollution can also increase the health problems caused by some diseases, causing patients to not recover , to do it more slowly or to see the symptoms of their aggravated illnesses. An example of this is found in skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis. This disease produces irritation and extreme dryness of the skin, which results in itching and eczema that are proportionally increased in those who suffer when levels of pollution rise.

Children and the elderly are more vulnerable to pollution

As always, children and the elderly are the hardest hit because their immune system is weaker and more likely to resent. In addition, numerous studies have shown that pollution can cause brain damage to children that can affect their cognitive functions, causing them not to develop properly or not at the time they should. This type of inadequate delays or developments also affect pregnant women , whose exposure to toxic gases from the cloud of contamination can cause the fetus does not grow or develop properly, causing the baby’s organs are irreversibly damaged.

As for the elderly, due to the temporary deterioration of their immune system, they are more likely to cure their illnesses in a worse way or more slowly. For this reason, the exposure of older people to these polluting gases can have even more serious consequences than in younger people, causing even premature deaths.

We must heal our planet

In short, pollution is an evil that is hitting hard both the planet and its inhabitants. Obviously, we can never see the sky of that intense blue color that was an inspiration for Becker in so many poems, but we can take measures so that, granite to granite, we get a cleaner air.

It is necessary to raise society’s awareness of this problem. This is killing us . We have to be more aware of our actions and the consequences these can bring. We need to make more use of public transport and avoid the use of aerosols, fertilizers and pesticides. Of course, we have to stop throwing garbage and waste and cutting and burning trees, since these are the lungs of the planet.

In short, we have to stop believing that a clean and pollution-free planet is a utopia. We must be responsible and aware that this problem is real and is reaching some extremes that we can not consent. If we all do our bit, we can get that, little by little, the planet can be cured and with it, we all do it.

How pollution affects us

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