Indoor Air Pollution: The Unknown Dangers

by Vivien Mah    

Indoor Air Pollution: The Unknown Dangers - Andatech Distribution

You might think of your home as the safest place from air pollution but you are wrong. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around 2.6 billion people still cook and warm their homes using open fires and stoves that use solid fuels such as coal or wood. In addition, there are around 9.5 million pet cats and dogs that contribute to potential allergy triggers. You may just not realize it but the air you breathe inside your home (or office) may even be more hazardous than outside air because of indoor air pollution.

Chances of indoor air pollution are especially high during winter where houses and offices are usually kept shut. Without the proper conditioning and circulation of air, dangers to you and your family health only get worse. Based on recent reports from WHO, nearly 4 million people die from illnesses caused by indoor air pollution rising from cooking with solid fuels like coal. What's alarming is not only adults are susceptible to this danger but conditions are worse for children. Indoor air pollution is responsible for 45% of pneumonia-related deaths in children (below the age of 5) because of inhaled soot.

Many people refuse to believe that there is imminent danger in their own homes. But the numbers cannot lie, according to reports, 3.8 million non-communicable deaths every year are attributed to exposure to household air pollution.

 

Indoor Air Pollution Unknown Dangers

Pneumonia

Pneumonia is one of the leading causes of death in children. When indoor air pollution is left untreated, it can double the risk of children getting the disease. According to a WHO study 45% of deaths in children are caused by acute lower respiratory infections. This is mainly caused by burnt fuel byproducts being inhaled by children below the age of 5.

Stroke and Coronary Artery Disease

According to a WHO fact sheet, frequent exposure to indoor air pollution due to cooking with fuel can be attributed to nearly 12% of deaths caused by stroke.

Lung cancer

Cancer is already one of the leading causes of deaths worldwide. In 2020, lung cancer was responsible for about 1.8 million of 10 million total cancer-related deaths. In WHO reports, they estimate that 17% of annual deaths caused by lung cancer is again, attributed to prolonged exposure to indoor air pollution. Solid fuels such as coal, wood, and grains produce carcinogens that are harmful to our health. Women have higher risks of contracting the disease due to their role in food preparation.

Indoor Air Pollution Infographic

indoor air pollution infographic

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Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for general reference only. Please seek advice from professionals according to your needs.