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Effects of air pollution on human health

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Comparing the rural areas, where the primary pollutants are significantly lesser unlike urban areas. Interestingly the level of ozone is generally higher between 20% - 40% as recorded by the National Automatic Rural Monitoring Network in UK. Comparing these two, it is quite evident that people in villages are much healthier than people living in metropolitan cities (Enviropedia, 2012) Key Components in Air The five major components of air includes the following - Nitrogen - 78% Oxygen - 21% Water vapor - 1% Argon - 0.93% Carbon dioxide - 0.038% Among all these components, it is the oxygen which the most important for humans and animals to survive.

Carbon dioxide and nitrogen is mostly needed by plants and trees for better growth (wisegeek, 2013) Major Pollutants in Air and their Effects on Human Health I. Carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide (CO) is a dangerous gaseous pollutant and it has the ability to mix with hemoglobin. The first sign of its encounter with the body is the loss of consciousness. It may even cause death at higher level but on a lower level encounter too, it is able to affect the health of a person so much that he may end up in hospital with cerebral damages (Ronald, 1998). Reference Value-When it collides with the hemoglobin (COHb) in red blood cells the level are recorded to determine the harmful affects of the gas.

Cigarette smokers may have a recorded level of 4% - 15% while concentration level of COHb at 2.5-4.0% has shown health effects on even healthy men. The normal range is considered to be below 2.5%. For heart patients, a study revealed in N. America and London that patients with heart failures had CO increased levels by 23% (Ronald, 1998). Definition and main source CO is a colorless, tasteless and odorless harmful and piousness gas.

It results by an incomplete burning of natural gas or materials such as kerosene, propane, wood, coal, forges or gasoline. The most common source of Co is combustion engine (OSHA, 2002). Health effect Inhaling Co may result in tightening around the chest and may be followed by severe headache, nausea and fatigue. People suffering with angina may also experience sudden chest pain. Encountering CO at a higher level may also worsen the situation where the patient might vomit, loosing consciousness and even collapsing.

Muscles going weaker is also one the symptoms of prolonged exposure of CO. It is extremely dangerous for young kids and older people. Pregnant women, if exposed to CO may cause harmful effects on fetuses while smokers and people living at high altitudes may also get severely harmful effects by CO (OSHA, 2002).

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