Our lifestyle and routine activities play a significant role in impacting our health. At the same time, it’s crucial to remember that our environment and surroundings play an equally important role. After all, throughout our lives, we interact with the environment in several different ways that can affect our health. Every second we spend our lives in the environment is causing our bodies to change gradually.
More importantly, natural and human changes have caused our environment to deteriorate over time. As a result, today’s environmental factors pose a significant threat to our well-being compared to the past. From air and sound pollution to rapidly developing pathogens and climate change, all affect our well-being in one way or another. And that’s why we must pay attention to such external factors.
Moving on, let’s discuss four environmental factors that adversely affect our health.
1. Air pollution
Over the years, the air we breathe in today has been significantly polluted with several types of hazardous gases and particles, primarily due to human activities. Factories and energy plants such as coal and gas plants continue to emit dangerous levels of toxins into the air each day. On the other hand, the increasing number of vehicular emissions and wildfires causes further issues.
Whether you’re indoors or outside, you may be inhaling toxins such as radon and carbon monoxide that lead to severe breathing issues and even cancer over time. In the long run, air pollution can cause kidney, liver, and brain diseases while also increasing the chances of congenital disabilities. Moreover, unpleasant smells, headaches, and dizziness caused by air pollution can deteriorate mental health.
What’s more worrying is that even our houses aren’t safe from air pollutants. One of the most dangerous toxins present in the air we breathe in our homes is asbestos. This substance is heavily used during construction and is present mainly in walls, ceilings, roofs, and commonly used household products. Asbestos fibers immersed in the air can be inhaled, causing mesothelioma, a rare lung cancer. If you’re willing to learn more about this incurable cancer, visit mesotheliomahope.com to gain all the information.
2. Diseases from pathogens
Microbes exist all around us in unimaginable quantities. While most of them are harmful and even beneficial in performing biological operations within the body, some can be dangerous for our health. Such microbes are known as pathogens and can cause various diseases following exposure.
While pathogens have been around for a long time, only recently drug-resistant pathogens or superbugs are starting to rise in number, posing a significant threat to our health. The excessive use of antimicrobial medicine has caused pathogens to develop mutations and overcome once effective drugs. As a result, it’s becoming more challenging to treat pathogenic illnesses. Moreover, super bacteria are predicted to kill more than 10 million people each year by 2050. However, there’s still time to slow down the development of superbugs by prescribing antimicrobial medicine only when there’s a need. People must also avoid taking such medication without a doctor’s approval.
3. Water pollution
Water is a crucial resource that humans require to live. However, unfortunately, due to excessive water pollution, as many as 2.2 billion people worldwide no longer have access to safe drinking water. As agricultural operations, plastic and oil usage, and industrial waste grow, the world’s drinking water is constantly being polluted. Due to the rising population, sewage water is dumped into drinking water sources in vast quantities.
As a result, people are now at the risk of drinking water contaminated with microplastics, bacteria, and chemical waste such as lead from pesticides, fertilizers, and industrial waste. Chemical waste alone can cause cancer, brain damage, and cardiovascular diseases. However, bacteria in polluted water are equally threatening. There can be hepatitis A, typhoid, cholera, and dysentery present in the water. On the other hand, microplastics contaminate drinking water and are also passed on to the seafood we eat. Once ingested, they can cause metabolic disorders, oxidative stress, and inflammatory reactions.
4. Climate change
Over the years, due to human activities and natural processes, the world’s climate has been disrupted and is rapidly rising in temperature. Climate change is perhaps the most concerning environmental factor as no individual is safe from its effects. Due to weather disruption, events such as hurricanes, thunderstorms, blizzards, and tornados will continue to rise in their number and intensity. Even in the most developed countries, these weather events can cause damage to infrastructure and human life.
Moreover, climate change is leading to extreme and hazardous temperatures around the world. A study has found that extreme temperatures are responsible for 5 million deaths per year. In the coming years, the temperatures are predicted to get much worse, causing significant damage to our health. Furthermore, the temperature rise is also increasing water levels, placing several people around the world at risk of floods.
As the world’s population and needs continue to grow, human activities will keep damaging the environment in many ways. From the water we consume to the air we inhale, every interaction with the environment gradually harms our health. Therefore, it’s crucial to consider environmental factors alongside our lifestyles to live a healthy life. From our houses to workplaces and every place in between, no place on the earth is free from environmental hazards. Nonetheless, it’s up to us to prevent our environment from damaging further.