- Climate change poses a real threat to not only our planet, but also our physical and mental health.
- Rising temperatures threaten illnesses like heat stroke, dehydration, heat exhaustion, as well as cardiovascular, respiratory, and cerebrovascular disease.
- Air quality will worsen leading to asthma attacks, and other respiratory and cardiovascular health effects.
- The threat or occurrence of extreme weather events can severely affect our mental health by causing stress, anxiety, and even PTSD.
When we think of climate change we often think of its effects on our planet and society as a whole. What will happen to all the endangered species, the glaciers, or the rainforest? How will it impact people who live close to rising ocean levels or the equator where temperatures are rising? Will we one day be fighting over natural resources like fresh water?
We also need to think about how it will and is affecting our own personal mental and physical health. WebMD warns that extreme heat, poor air quality, and disease-carrying insects are just a few of the things we need to worry about when it comes to climate change. All of these pose some kind of threat or harm to human health. To learn more, here’s a deeper look into the impacts of climate change on our health…
While the United States has made improvements to their air quality since the 1970s, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as of 2014, 57 million Americans lived in counties that didn’t meet national air quality standards. The effects of climate change will likely make these conditions even worse.
“Warmer temperatures and shifting weather patterns can worsen air quality, which can lead to asthma attacks and other respiratory and cardiovascular health effects,” writes EPA. As climate change continues there’s expected to be an increase in wildfires which create smoke and other unhealthy pollutants. Rising temperatures and carbon dioxide levels will also affect airborne allergens.