Smoke From Raging Wildfires Can Harm Health
Wildfires are increasing in frequency and intensity in many countries, spreading smoke that contains noxious gases, chemicals and particulate matter and carries serious health risks. More toxic than air pollution, wildfire smoke can linger in the air for weeks and travel hundreds of miles.
@arpo Laboratory experiments have shown that a given amount of wildfire smoke causes more inflammation and tissue damage than the same amount of air pollution. Studies in people have linked wildfire smoke with higher rates of heart attacks, strokes, and cardiac arrests; increases in emergency room visits for asthma and other respiratory conditions; and weakened immune defenses. Some increased transmission of COVID-19 has been attributed to the spread of virus on particulate matter in wildfire smoke. Wildfire exposure in pregnancy has been associated with pregnancy loss, low birth weight, and preterm delivery. Wildfires have also been linked with eye irritation and itchy skin, rashes and other dermatological problems.