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Does air pollution affect your heart health? Find out how to protect yourself!

Aug 24, 2017

Air is the single resource we need cannot see but need to survive. As we cannot see it, we do not know if it is pure or not. As a result, the air you breathe is often laden with particulate matter and harmful gases that can wreak havoc when it comes to your health. This particulate matter can enter your bloodstream putting you at risk of heart attack and stroke. Those with heart conditions are at a greater risk, as inhaling pollutants can trigger a stroke. At the same time, it is essential for children and the elder to avoid exposure to pollutants in the air as they are more susceptible to illnesses. Air quality is proving to be a key determinant of your heart health. The American Heart Association discovered that the effects of air pollution are greater among the elderly, especially those who are already struggling with a heart condition.

According to the World Health Organization, air pollution is the world’s largest environmental health risk. This makes it even more important for you to know about the effects of air pollution on your health. Once you know about the levels of air pollution in your vicinity, the timings when it is at its peak and the composition of the polluted air, you can change your schedule to reduce the effect of pollution on your body. For instance, if you go for a walk in the evening, you might actually be harming your body as air pollution might be at its peak in your area at that time. Educating yourself about the effects of air pollution on your heart is the first step to protecting yourself. Here are some ways you can breathe clean and have a safe heart.

Use personal protective breathing gear

Nowadays it is not uncommon to see people wearing a range of breathing equipment or respirators in cities. This is due to the increase in air pollution levels in urban areas that make your daily commute an exhausting experience. From scarfs and hospital masks to clinical respirators, people are finding innovative ways to minimize the effects of air pollution on their health. If you have a heart condition and travel on a two wheeler or use public transport, it might be a good idea to purchase a respirator to stay safe from the damaging effects of air pollution.

Avoiding outdoor activity when and where air pollutant levels are higher

The levels of air pollution differ on an hourly, daily and monthly basis. Furthermore, the level of air pollution also differs from place to place. For instance, the air within your home is lesser polluted than the air at a traffic signal. You can judge the air quality to a limited extent using your sense of smell or if breathing in a particular environment causes an irritation in your nasal tract. However, you cannot know the quality of the air you breathe at all times. As a result, you must refer to communications about air quality found commonly at public places or in the daily newspaper. This can help you effectively adjust behavior to reduce exposure and risk to pollutants.

Invest in an indoor air purifier

Yes, an air purifier is an investment and not an expense. This is because it only adds value to your health. Portable air purifiers can reduce concentrations of indoor air pollutants such as dust, smoke and other pollutants of either outdoor or indoor origin. Filter-based air purifiers are a great way reducing indoor levels of particulate matter and minimize the impact of these air pollutants on your heart health.

Take control of your heart health and use these measures to ensure that you and your loved ones breathe clean and pure air.

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