How Can Air Pollution Affect A Child's Physical Development?

Do you know what pollutants are dangerous for your young infants?

Tavishi Dogra
Written by: Tavishi DograUpdated at: Jan 15, 2020 11:28 IST
How Can Air Pollution Affect A Child's Physical Development?

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Do you know that every year more than 7 million infants die at the age of 5 due to air pollution? Pollution is harmful to children as well as elders, but air pollution can be dangerous for newborns (under 1 year of age). The risk of premature death in newborns born in polluted areas is very high. A recent study has shown that the impact of pollution on children below 1 year of age is so bad that it can kill them. This study was done at Cardiff University School of Medicine. Several previous studies have reported that air pollution increases the risk of respiratory and heart-related diseases and causes early death.

3 Poisonous Elements


Newborn babies are most vulnerable to very small dust particles and dangerous gases in the air. According to research, the 3 most dangerous pollutants for infants are PM10 (Particulate Matter 10), Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) and Sulfur Dioxide (SO2). In cities where one or all of these are high, the chances of the infant dying within 1 year of birth increase from 20% to 50%.

Smoke emanating from the vehicles can spoil the baby's lungs


Not only this, after research conducted at the University of Leicester, scientists said that the smoke emanating from the vehicles on the road can also be dangerous for infants. According to this research, up to 3 months after birth, if you travel frequently on a road full of vehicles carrying a new baby, then the lung of the baby can be affected. Such children may have asthma or any dangerous disease related to lungs and breath at an early age.

Also Read: Handle Teething Pain In Infants By Following These Simple Tips


How to save young infants from pollution?

  • Do not travel on a road with a lot of traffic for children younger than 3 months.
  • The baby must be breastfed with thick yellow milk (colostrum). It increases the immunity of the baby and makes their lungs strong.
  • If your house is around the street, always keep the windows and doors closed so that pollutants with air do not reach the baby's lungs.
  • If your baby has trouble breathing, see a doctor as soon as possible.
  • To protect your baby (under 6 months) from mosquitoes, use a mosquito net instead of a smoked coil or electronic mosquito repellent. The smoke emanating from the coil can be harmful to the baby.
  • Keep children (younger than 3 years old) away from the smoke of incense sticks, incense burners, etc. during the poojas at home.

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