Mood swings amid air pollution: 6 ways toxic air is affecting our mental health, how to fix this | Hindustan Times
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Mood swings amid air pollution: 6 ways toxic air is affecting our mental health, how to fix this

Updated On Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST
  • Feeling stressed and gloomy as the air quality continues to deteriorate in North India? Air pollution may be affecting your mental health.
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"Pollution is not only harming our physical environment but also taking a toll on our mental health.  Our mental health is negatively impacted by the concerning rise in pollution levels, whether they are from chemicals, noise, water, or the air," says Dr Jyoti Kapoor, Founder-Director and Senior Psychiatrist, Manasthali. She talks about  six ways pollution affects our mental health and suggests ways to mitigate these impacts.(Unsplash) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

"Pollution is not only harming our physical environment but also taking a toll on our mental health.  Our mental health is negatively impacted by the concerning rise in pollution levels, whether they are from chemicals, noise, water, or the air," says Dr Jyoti Kapoor, Founder-Director and Senior Psychiatrist, Manasthali. She talks about  six ways pollution affects our mental health and suggests ways to mitigate these impacts.(Unsplash)

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1. Excessive pollution, particularly in cities, can cause long-term stress and increased anxiety. Stress hormones are released when we are continuously exposed to pollutants, noise, and contaminated air, which has an adverse effect on our mental health. Regular stress-reduction techniques like mindfulness, meditation, and yoga can help individuals cope with stress and anxiety.  (Unsplash) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

1. Excessive pollution, particularly in cities, can cause long-term stress and increased anxiety. Stress hormones are released when we are continuously exposed to pollutants, noise, and contaminated air, which has an adverse effect on our mental health. Regular stress-reduction techniques like mindfulness, meditation, and yoga can help individuals cope with stress and anxiety.  (Unsplash)

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2. Research has shown a link between elevated risk of mood disorders and depression and air pollution. The brain's functioning can be impacted by pollutants, which can alter mood and cognitive function. Enhancing indoor air quality, reducing exposure to outdoor pollutants, and take professional help when experiencing mood disturbances are essential steps to tackle depression and mood disorders associated with pollution. (Freepik) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

2. Research has shown a link between elevated risk of mood disorders and depression and air pollution. The brain's functioning can be impacted by pollutants, which can alter mood and cognitive function. Enhancing indoor air quality, reducing exposure to outdoor pollutants, and take professional help when experiencing mood disturbances are essential steps to tackle depression and mood disorders associated with pollution. (Freepik)

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3. Pollution exposure, specifically exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5), has been associated with a higher risk of neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer's, as well as dementia. Reducing exposure to air pollution through air purifiers, proper ventilation, and lifestyle changes, such as wearing masks in heavily polluted areas, can help protect cognitive health. (Pixabay) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

3. Pollution exposure, specifically exposure to fine particulate matter (PM2.5), has been associated with a higher risk of neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer's, as well as dementia. Reducing exposure to air pollution through air purifiers, proper ventilation, and lifestyle changes, such as wearing masks in heavily polluted areas, can help protect cognitive health. (Pixabay)

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4. Noise pollution from traffic and industrial activities, in particular, can disrupt sleep patterns and lead to sleep disorders such as insomnia and sleep apnea. Noise-reduction strategies such as soundproofing dwellings, wearing earplugs, and utilising white noise machines can help improve sleep quality.  (Getty Images/iStockphoto) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

4. Noise pollution from traffic and industrial activities, in particular, can disrupt sleep patterns and lead to sleep disorders such as insomnia and sleep apnea. Noise-reduction strategies such as soundproofing dwellings, wearing earplugs, and utilising white noise machines can help improve sleep quality.  (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

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5. High pollution levels can discourage outdoor activities and social interactions due to health concerns, leading to feelings of isolation and loneliness. Promoting community engagement and creating cleaner, green public spaces can encourage social interaction.   (representational photo) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

5. High pollution levels can discourage outdoor activities and social interactions due to health concerns, leading to feelings of isolation and loneliness. Promoting community engagement and creating cleaner, green public spaces can encourage social interaction.   (representational photo)

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6. Increased irritability and aggressive behaviour have been linked to air pollution, which can impact personal relationships and overall well-being. Practicing anger management techniques, staying informed about local air quality, and advocating for cleaner air can help combat irritability and aggression linked to pollution. (Unsplash) expand-icon View Photos in a new improved layout
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 07:47 AM IST

6. Increased irritability and aggressive behaviour have been linked to air pollution, which can impact personal relationships and overall well-being. Practicing anger management techniques, staying informed about local air quality, and advocating for cleaner air can help combat irritability and aggression linked to pollution. (Unsplash)

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