The Effects of Air Pollution – Kelly Ash

The topic for my Health Buzz is the effects of air pollution and how it impacts teenagers. 

I chose this topic because I thought it would be interesting to research and tell my classmates about air pollution, since we do live in a city where air pollution is a problem. I was born and have lived for quite a long time in a city where pollutants were highly regulated and air pollution was not a worry for me. I also did have asthma when I was younger, and so I must be careful around harmful substances.

Children, teenagers and other sensitive populations are almost always more vulnerable to problems like air pollution. Teens proportionally take in larger quantities of air compared to adults. They tend to play outdoors more, engaging in sporting activities that speed up their breathing even more. Their lungs are still developing which makes them sensitive to the air pollution around them.

Other planets have sunlight, but the Earth is the only planet we know that has oxygen. Without air, the Earth would be unable to sustain life. It is important to stay informed about dangers to our health and to learn what we may do to protect ourselves in a polluted environment.

I knew that air pollution could damage your lungs, but I never realized the extent of air pollution and its effects on teenagers and adults. I have learned in my research that air pollution has both acute and chronic effects on human health, affecting a number of different systems and organs. These range from minor upper respiratory irritation to chronic respiratory and heart disease, lung cancer, acute respiratory infections in children and chronic bronchitis in adults. Air pollution can aggravate pre-existing heart and lung disease and contribute to asthmatic attacks. In addition, short- and long-term exposures to pollutants have also been linked with premature mortality and reduced life expectancy. Knowing how badly air pollution affects human health I think cities should limit as much as possible the amount of fumes coming from vehicles as well as the burning of fossil fuels  near urban areas.

I chose this image because I think it accurately shows how there are so many different activities that cause air pollution.

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