Global warming may impact children’s health: Research

ISLAMABAD: Climate change can often feel like an abstract idea, something that is happening in the background but is rarely linked to our daily activities.

A new research by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) aims to change that, and remind us all that climate change is real, imminent, and dangerous.

The AAP urges doctors and policymakers to work together to end the crisis and prevent its negative impact on children’s health.

“Worsening heat waves and severe weather events, changing allergy seasons and shifting infectious disease patterns affect many children directly,” Dr. Samantha Ahdoot writes in the AAP release, Health news reported.

“It can be hard to make sense of it all, let alone know what to do about it. Because of their growing minds and bodies, children are uniquely vulnerable to changes in their

environment.

A changing climate has a wide range of effects on the plants, animals and natural systems on which children depend for their own health, safety and security.”

While temperature rising one degree doesn’t seem like much, “small changes in the average temperature of the planet can translate to large and potentially dangerous shifts in climate and weather,” the EPA states.

In their statement, the AAP notes several factors of climate change that can impact children’s health, from heat-related illness to air quality.

Hotter temperatures causes the concentration of ozone (smog) in the air to rise, and this can increase asthma attacks and lung problems.

Climate change also causes more wildfires, which emit toxic smoke into the air. Not to mention air pollution, which has been linked to cancer, heart disease, and lowered longevity.

Scientists believe that air pollution, allergies, and climate change all play a role in exacerbating asthma symptoms.

“Every child needs a safe and healthy environment and climate change is a rising public health threat to all children in this country and around the world,” AAP President Dr. Sandra Hassink said.

“Pediatricians have a unique and powerful voice in this conversation due to their knowledge of child health and disease and their role in ensuring the health of current and future children.”

Recently, President Barack Obama made a direct link between climate change and health problems during a speech, noting that people who suffered from respiratory illnesses would see an improvement in their health if we reduced carbon emissions and air pollution.