Protect children from air pollution has become a major topic throughout the world with raising air pollution and industrial raise up. When discussing air quality and air pollution, children are one of the age groups we often overlook.
They should also be given the same level of priority as allergy sufferers, the elderly, and those with serious respiratory difficulties.
Often, the younger age group is the one in which we can rapidly detect the majority of symptoms associated with the worst air quality scenarios. Characterizing them at a young age is therefore one of the primary prerequisites, and having a proper grasp of them from time to time is a future advantage.
So today, know Your Facts, let’s discuss children and air quality and what we can do to ensure their safety.
A child’s respiratory system is not fully formed at a younger age. As with other organs, their lungs continue to develop until they reach adulthood.
Therefore, the entire defense against any air pollutant cannot be controlled to 100 % for an elderly person in this scenario. But because children are exposed to greater air volume than ordinary people due to their everyday activities, they must also adhere to additional health recommendations.
Does Air Pollution Impact on Infants?
Checking the records reveals a direct correlation between changing environmental circumstances and the incidence of health concerns among newborn children. Mostly like:
- Brain injury
- Blood disorders
- Lower respiratory tract illnesses
- Diarrheal conditions
This illness and other air pollution-related health abnormalities are responsible for an estimated 1.8 million deaths of neonates and infants less than one-month-old worldwide.
As you can see, this is a serious issue that could affect population growth in the near future.
Worst case scenario, if you have these terrible health problems caused by poor environmental conditions, as a pregnant mother, there is always a correlation between your health and your child’s health problem.
Air Pollution Controls Kids’ Growth
According to WHO data, over 93% of children under 15 are exposed to toxic air on a daily basis, and a significant number of them are open to serious medical conditions.
Others are afflicted with many infections. Even if you are neglected, it may manifest as stunted growth in your child, which is obviously not the same as the condition.
Due to a lack of understanding and contempt for excellent air quality as a fundamental human need, this is especially apparent in countries with poor or intermediate incomes.
According to the most recent studies, the brain development of young children influences their future growth and decision-making ability.
Without our careful attention, even minute quantities of a toxin can easily cause damage. If your children are exposed to filthy air over an extended period of time, his:
- Optimal cognitive ability
- The steepness of the learning curve
- Healthy way of life
- Memory Capacity
might be a serious impact over a significantly long period of time.
In addition, some children’s educational performance and social backwardness hinder their ability to acquire new abilities. Mostly like:
- Anxiety \ Depression
- Memory and intellect difficulties
- Disorder of attention deficit hyperactivity etc.
These can also occur in children during their development as a result of exposure to contaminated, harmful air conditions.
In addition to mental disorders, it can also be observed following physical issues.
- Abnormal heartbeat
- Difficulty with respiration
- problems with lung function
- Issues in organ development
- Problems with body mass index etc.
Any slight divergence in the growth route of children, as opposed to an adult, can have negative consequences in the future.
In such a circumstance, creating a suitable air atmosphere always plays a significant role in this process.
Air Pollution Behind Most Kid Sicknesses
Whether you are a child or an adult, it is common knowledge that poor air quality is detrimental to one’s health. However, children are more susceptible to harm than ordinary people.
This is primarily owing to their immature immune systems, and lower-level experiences are susceptible to such diseases. As parents, we must help children feel at ease during the maturation process and instill in them the importance of developing an awareness shield.
1. Coughs and Sneezing
Coughs and sneezing are the most common medical conditions kid easily safe in a bad atmosphere.
The majority of the time, an infection could be present inside the respiratory system.
This infection could be the cause of other troubles, such as extreme weariness, sneezing, fever, and even breathing problems.
However, the vast majority of the time this occurs through the body of the sneezing child, which is attempting to expel the germs and harmful particles into the environment. It is a method that the human body uses for the purpose of self-defense.
Sneezing, however, is one of the symptoms that can sometimes be seen in neonates who have a disease known as neonatal abstinence syndrome.
In addition to the dangers posed by air pollution, this incident occurred as a direct result of the mother’s use of drugs during the time she was pregnant.
With poor air quality, infections can potentially induce pneumonia in the respiratory system. In this instance, your lungs are swelling with fluid, making breathing extremely difficult.
Imagine how difficult this is for children with a weakened immune system compared to the average individual.
According to UNICEF records, one child dies from pneumonia every 39 seconds around the world. The majority are preventable. That may convince you of how pervasive this issue has become among children.
Pneumonia conditions are generally caused by poor air quality, and the problem is that it is easily transmitted through airborne particles, such as coughs and sneezes, and sometimes fluids.
Consequently, it is possible to get pneumonia by minimizing contact with individuals who have such illnesses.
Antibiotics provided by a physician are one of the best solutions if children have similar health problems. This health issue limits the blood’s oxygen supplement due to the presence of fluids; therefore, sufficient ventilation is usually advised.
As with adult asthma, childhood asthma is caused by a multitude of irritants, such as dust and pollen, that inflame the inner airways, pathways, and lungs as a protective measure for the body when they exceed a certain threshold.
The majority of these conditions are discovered or develop while children are on the playground, playing sports, or attending school, primarily as a result of enjoyable outdoor activities.
Aside from brief hospitalizations, children may occasionally experience “No school days” and emergency visits. If your children have asthma, advise their closest relatives to take precautions in the event of an emergency.
Childhood asthma might not be completely treated. It remains till you reach adulthood. However, it may be swiftly regulated and implemented into your regular life. Aside from extra precautions for safety, children with asthma are always typical.
How Can We Protect Children from Air Pollution?
If you are a parent, caring about your children’s health has recently become a greater necessity, since air quality has reached a much broader and more advanced stage.
A number of precautionary measures are feasible to implement.
1. Try Face Masks
As a result of the season of the pandemic, everyone began wearing face masks to avoid airborne viral attacks. However, it is also a matter of managing and avoiding millions of health-threatening air contaminants.
A self-protective atmosphere is concealed from children and adults by wearing a mask during regular job routines. There are a variety of masks available on the market.
- Fabric Masks
- Disposable Masks
- Standard Masks
If a child is younger than two years old, it is not suggested that they wear a mask. Always choose a mask with a size that effectively closes the nose and mouth if you must wear one.
Managed disposable masks serve this purpose if they are periodically replaced.
- NIOH-Approved Respirators KN95/N95
Always choose NIOH-approved respirators when purchasing a respirator for a child. They have largely built smaller spaces for adult workplaces.
2. Keep Maintain HVAC system
According to records, indoor air quality is significantly poorer than outside air quality due to the limited amount of air that circulates indoors.
Installing an HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air-Conditioning) system is the most effective way to maintain clean air quality. Neglecting to maintain and update the process once it has been put up is the primary error you make that exacerbates the situation.
Filters and other utilities must be updated and replaced in accordance with the current season.
Installing a new HVAC system is an expensive endeavor.
However, it is a long-term investment that increases the property’s worth. In all seasons, however, the feeling of warmth and security that it generates is indescribable.
If you have children and are a family-oriented person, you might strongly agree with this statement.
3. Indoor Air Pollution – Keep it Low
As previously stated, indoor air quality is significantly inferior to outdoor. Even though children are very active outside, poor indoor air quality can cause them to fall ill rapidly.
There could be various causes for this,
- Fuel-burning Combustion
- Tobacco Usage
- Building Materials and fixtures
a. Asbestos-containing flooring insulation, upholstery, or carpet
b. Wooden furnishings and item
- Excess moisture
- Concerns about HAVC techniques
- Issues in personal hygiene
- repercussions of outside sources
a. Particle matters
If you live with children, keeping these things to a minimum is more of a “must” than for adults.
But practically managing them and keeping their number low is usually advantageous for everyone.
4. Be Updated on Your Area AQI
AQI (Air Quality Index) is a daily reporting mechanism for air quality in a specific place. This record may be useful for children who suffer from severe respiratory disease while outdoors.
There are several air pollutant parameters are behind AQI. A few of them can be identified as Ground-level ozone, Particle pollution, Carbon monoxide, Sulfur dioxide, and Nitrogen dioxide in the surrounding atmosphere
Having a significant understanding and update about AQI gives much information on the action you have to be taken in any case of an emergency.
5. Air Purifiers are the Best
An air Purifier is the most effective method for avoiding several air contaminants. It is capable of establishing mobile clean air conditioning in a restricted region. Depending on your needs, there are a variety of air purifier categories.
You may easily install an air purifier in the children’s bedroom, which will significantly boost the room’s protection.
This approach is generally good for children who suffer from allergies and asthma illnesses on occasion.
There are a variety of mobile air purifiers available on the market that may be utilized in cars or small spaces.
6. Check with Your Doctor
Try to maintain a private doctor consultation service relating to this topic if you are a parent with a child. The majority of the community overlooked a background in consulting because it was not on the “old doctor’s bucket list.”
However, given the current state of affairs, we must now be concerned about a number of issues that were not significant in the past.
If your child suffers from an illness related to the respiratory system, it may be good to have this information on hand for preventative measures or emergencies.