Climate Change: Its Ill-Effects on Health


The increase in temperature in the atmosphere is referred to as global warming. But climate change is the term currently favored by scientists since it specifically includes not just Earth’s increasing global average temperature as well as the effects on climate caused by this increase.

Any gasthat has the ability of absorbing infrared radiation that is emitted by the Earth’s surface and radiating it back to Earth’s surface, is referred to as greenhouse gas. Carbon dioxide, methane, and water vapor are the most significant greenhouse gases. Others greenhouse gasses include but are not restricted to, surface-level ozone or nitrous oxide. hexafluoride, hydro fluorocarbons, per fluorocarbons, and chlorofluorocarbons.

Though a naturally occurring phenomenon in nature, the greenhouse effect can cause a warming effect on the troposphere and surface of Earth – which is the most breathable layer of atmosphere. Out of the greenhouse gases, water vapor has the largest impact.

The main causes for climate change are burning fossil fuels like oil, coal, natural gas, forest destruction as well as the increase in population agricultural waste, and landfills.

Greenhouse gases store heat in the atmosphere. At higher levels than normal they cause unnatural warming. The most significant cause of the current trend of global warming is the expansion of human activity in the greenhouse effect, which is a climate change that occurs when the atmosphere absorbs heat radiating off of Earth toward space.

Even a small global temperature rise could result in serious consequences, including rising sea levels, population displacement and disruptions to food supply, flooding, and adverse health effects. As a matter of fact, human health bears most of the effects of climate change.

Climate change’s negative impacts on health

The effects of climate change on human health mainly in two ways: one by altering the frequency or severity of health issues already influenced by climate changes and second, it can cause health problems in places which they’ve never been present.

Effects of temperature rise (-

Growing concentrations of greenhouse gases lead to an increase of extreme and normal temperatures. This may affect the body’s ability to regulate its temperature. A lack of internal temperature control could lead to a chain reaction of illnesses, including heat cramps, heat exhaustion hyperthermia and heatstroke in the conditions of intense heat, and also hypothermia and frostbite when in the presence of extreme cold. Temperature extremes can also worsen chronic conditions like respiratory diseases, cardiovascular illness, cerebrovascular diseases and diabetes-related disorders.

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Outdoor workers, those who are socially lonely, economically marginalized and people with chronic illness are more prone to the adverse effects of temperature changes.

The effects of air quality (-

Climate change has modified the weather pattern, and has influenced the amount and location of outdoor air pollutants , such as ground-level ozone (O3) and fine particulate matter. In addition, rising the carbon dioxide (CO2) levels also aid in the expansion of plants which emit airborne allergens. Higher pollen concentrations and longer pollen seasons may increase asthma and allergic sensitization, thereby limiting productivity at workplace and in school. Insufficient air-quality, indoors or outdoors, may adversely affect human cardiovascular and respiratory systems.

Impacts of extreme events –

Climate change can lead to an increased frequency and severity of certain extreme events. They can have health impacts such as death or injury during the event, for example, drowning during floods. The health effects can also happen during and after an event that is extreme, since people involved in such activities as disaster planning and post-event cleanup put their health at risk. The extent and severity of health-related effects that are caused by extreme events is dependent on the physical effects of the extreme events themselves.

Vector borne diseases –

Diseases that are vector-borne can be transmitted by vectors which include ticks, mosquitoes, and fleas. These vectors can carry infective pathogens such as viruses, protozoa and bacteria, which are transmitted from one host (carrier) from one to another. The distribution, frequency and frequency of diseases transmitted by vectors are influenced significantly by climate. Changes in climate are likely to have both short- and long-term implications on vector-borne disease transmission as well as infection patterns, affecting both risk during the season and disease incidence over time.

Water related diseases –

Climate change is predicted to impact marine and fresh the water sources in ways that will increase the likelihood of being exposed to water-related pollutants that can cause illness. Water-related illnesses include waterborne diseases caused by pathogens such as bacteria protozoa, viruses, and fungi. These illnesses can also be caused by toxins produced by harmful algae as well as through the infiltration of chemical substances into waterways by human activities. Exposition occurs via ingestion or direct contact with the water that is contaminated for drinking or recreation as well as through the consumption of contaminated fish and sea food.

Mental health effects”

Mental health impacts associated with climate change range from a few minor stress and anxiety symptoms to clinical disorders like depression, anxiety as well as post-traumatic stress and suicidal tendencies. Children, older women (especially pregnant and post-partum women) or those who have a already diagnosed mental illnesses, the people who are financially disadvantaged and homeless are more exposed to the psychological effects.

The effects on food safety and quality

Climate change is very likely to impact local, regional and even local food security in the form of disrupting food supply and reducing access to food , and making it harder to utilize. Increased levels of CO2 may lower levels of protein and other essential minerals in a variety of commonly consumed crops, such as rice, wheat and potatoes, with possibly negative effects for human nutrition. Food that is not nutritionally balanced can affect those who are vulnerable in the population.

“The bottom line –

Over the last 50-years, human activities have produced enough carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that trap additional heat in the lower atmosphere and alter the climate of our planet. Based on WHO (World Health Organisation):

  • The effects of climate change are on the social and environmental determinants of health – clean air as well as safe drinking water. adequate food supply and safe shelter.
  • Between 2030 and 2050, climate change is expected to cause approximately 250000 more deaths each year due to malnutrition, malaria, diarrhea and heat stress.

In light of the serious repercussions of climate change on our health, we all should work together to lower greenhouse gases through better transport, food and energy use choices so as to improve our health particularly through reduced air pollution.

Climate change has now become an international issue due to the fact that it causes myriads of ill-effects which include those that affect human health.Climate change needs to be addressed by every nation and also the people who live there.


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