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Noise and air pollution can affect mental health

Noise and air pollution can affect mental health

Noise and air pollution can affect mental health

The study shows that exposure during pregnancy can lead to subsequent disorders

The environment affects not only our physical health, but also the mental health of those still in the womb. A recent study has shown that exposure to air and noise pollution early in life may be associated with several mental health problems common in adolescence and young adulthood.

An analysis of more than 9,000 people in England found that increased exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5) during pregnancy – a common pollutant with well-established health impacts – was associated with greater odds of psychotic symptoms and depression.

The work, led by Joanne Newbury of Bristol Medical School, also showed that exposure to fine particles in childhood was associated with higher rates of psychotic experiences, but the association appeared to weaken after adjusting for exposure in pregnancy , the magazine authors reported Jama network open.

Brain development and changes in genes

“Exposure early in life may be harmful to mental health, given the extensive brain development and epigenetic processes that occur in utero and throughout childhood,” the researchers argued.

Air pollution was primarily associated with psychotic experiences and depression, while noise pollution was most associated with anxiety in adolescence and young adulthood.

Individuals exposed to higher levels of noise pollution during adolescence were more likely to experience anxiety. However, adolescent exposure was also weaker after adjusting for exposure during pregnancy and childhood.

They also noted that there was no association between exposure to higher levels of air pollution and anxiety.

Data on pregnant women and their children

Researchers collected data from birth cohort participants in a longitudinal study in the United Kingdom that enrolled pregnant women in the city of Bristol, England, between April 1, 1991 and December 31, 1992. Participants had an average age of 24.5 years. -up and 51.4% were women.

Among the total study population, 19.5% of participants reported psychotic experiences, 11.4% had depression, and 9.7% had anxiety.

Psychotic experiences, depression and anxiety were measured at ages 13, 18 and 24 years. Psychotic experiences were measured using a semi-structured interview, which consisted of 12 core items on hallucinations, delusions, and thought interference.

The study had several limitations, such as the fact that the participants were from a wealthier and less diverse British population. But the findings showed that there is a need to better understand the impact of exposure to different forms of pollution during different stages of human development. And this could lead to possible interventions to protect pregnant women and children from pollution.

Source: Terra

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