What are the 6 pollutants known to cause health problems?

The most prevalent pollutants that cause health problems to humans are –

  1. Lead – affect the nervous system, kidney function, immune system, reproductive and development systems, and the cardiovascular system.
  2. Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM 2.5) – penetrates deeper into the lungs and causes heart attacks, strokes, asthma, and bronchitis, as well as premature death from heart ailments, lung disease, and cancer. 
  3. Nitrogen Oxides (NO and NO2)- result in the development and exacerbations of asthma and bronchitis, and can lead to a higher risk of heart disease.
  4. Ozone – Short-term exposure to ozone can cause chest pain, coughing, and throat irritation, while long-term exposure can lead to lung function and cause chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
  5. Sulphur Dioxide (SO2) – causes eye irritation, worsens asthma, increases susceptibility to respiratory infections, and impacts the cardiovascular system. 
  6. Carbon Monoxide – can reduce oxygen delivery into the body’s tissues and organs, including the heart and brain, when inhaled. 

Further Readings – 

  1. Air Pollutants
  2. Black Carbon

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