There is nothing to breathe: what is the danger of smog from fires and how to protect yourself
Photo: Bulkin Sergey/Global Look Press/globallookpress.com
A fire season has been declared in 83 constituent entities of Russia, as of August 19. The most large-scale revelry of the elements is in Komi and Yakutia. Forest fires have been recorded in Nizhny Novgorod, Ryazan, Vladimir and other regions. Smoke and ash cover large cities, this week the capital has been covered in smog. How dangerous it is to breathe polluted air and how to protect yourself and your loved ones — we talked about this with experts.
Smog is one of the most dangerous threats to health. According to the WHO, breathing this low quality air is tantamount to passive smoking. According to the chief physician of the Medsi clinic on Leninsky Prospekt Alena Glushakova, the mixture of combustion products and exhaust from cars primarily affects the mucous membranes of the eyes and respiratory tract. Of particular danger is the dust that penetrates the pulmonary vesicles, causing irritation and facilitating the penetration of toxic and carcinogenic substances into the body. Therefore, smog can cause diseases such as bronchitis, bronchial asthma, emphysema, and lung cancer.
“The action of harmful substances is felt by the biggest risk group – people with cardiovascular diseases. They have an increase in blood pressure, aggravation of heart failure, rhythm disturbance. Poor air quality leads to problems with concentration, memory, faster aging of the nervous system, and an increased risk of Alzheimer’s.»
Photo: Komsomolskaya Pravda/Global Look Press/globallookpress.com
To minimize the risks to your health, it is important to keep exposure to polluted air to a minimum. Elena Androsova, head of the pediatrics department and cardiologist at the clinic, recommends keeping doors and windows tightly closed whenever possible, especially at night and in the morning, as the concentration of harmful substances in the air is maximum at this time.
It is worth giving up long walks, limit physical activity, especially on the street. If you have to go out on business, then put on a protective mask moistened with water and wrung out. Moisture is better at trapping small particles of smog. And upon returning home, it is best to rinse the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract and eyes with water or saline. The skin also needs care — after cleansing, it will benefit from a protective cream.
“It is important to consume plenty of fluids, vegetables and fruits. Limit smoking as much as possible. In the house, it is worth carrying out wet cleaning every day and generally humidifying the air by any available means, ”
the doctor advises.
In case of poisoning, there may be a feeling of lack of air or suffocation. At this point, it is very important to seek medical help immediately.
As a rule, large-scale forest fires end with the onset of a cool and rainy period. Forecasters were divided in opinion, what will be September in the country. Some expect dry and dry weather, others talk about heavy rains and abnormally low temperatures for early autumn. One way or another, the elements will take their toll and the air quality in cities will definitely improve.