What makes an environment unhealthy?

What makes an environment unhealthy?

In 2012, an estimated 12.6 million individuals died as a result of living or working in an unhealthy environment, accounting for approximately one-quarter of all global deaths. More than 100 illnesses and injuries are caused by environmental risk factors such as air, water, and soil pollution, chemical exposure, climate change, and UV radiation. Many diseases have multiple causes; however, many environmental risks can lead to disease development if enough time passes or if the body's resistance is low due to illness or aging.

An environment is considered healthy when it provides its inhabitants with the necessary nutrients they need to maintain good health, removes noxious substances from their bodies at a rate adequate to prevent damage, and does not cause physical or mental stress beyond what they can bear. An unhealthy environment can be caused by excessive amounts of chemicals in the air, water, or soil; a lack of appropriate facilities (for example, housing); violence or other forms of psychological stress; or natural disasters such as earthquakes or floods.

The quality of life in an environment is affected by many factors besides health alone. These include the availability of necessities such as food, shelter, safety, and education and the opportunity to participate in society. An individual's perception of health also affects how much satisfaction they get out of their life here on Earth.

There are several ways that an environment can affect our health.

How are humans affected by the degraded environment?

Environmental Degradation's Effects Environmental deterioration may have a negative impact on human health. Toxic air pollutants can induce respiratory diseases such as pneumonia and asthma in those who live in polluted areas. Millions of people have perished as a result of the indirect impacts of air pollution. Climate change will have an impact on human health through changes to weather patterns, water shortages, and increased rates of disease transmission.

Hazardous substances present in the environment may cause cancer or birth defects. For example, exposure to arsenic causes cancer of the skin, bladder, and lung; in children, arsenic can enter the body through food or drinking water. Lead is another hazardous substance that can be found in the environment and in household products such as paint and gasoline. Exposure to lead can affect the brain development of children who consume lead-contaminated food or drink products or who are exposed to lead in their homes. The increasing use of pesticides has resulted in concern about how this may affect the ability of humans to resist other types of illness or injury. Pesticides are chemicals designed to get rid of insects that eat plants, so they can kill other organisms such as mice or birds that would otherwise eat the plants. However, because pesticides are also toxic to other organisms, they may remain in the environment long after they are applied and can reach humans through eating contaminated fruits or vegetables, contacting poisoned animals, or being bitten by insects that have been sprayed with them.

How is the environment related to health?

Pollutants in the environment can cause respiratory disorders, heart disease, and some forms of cancer. Low-income people are more likely to live in polluted locations with contaminated drinking water. Furthermore, children and pregnant women are more vulnerable to pollution-related health concerns. The health of our population depends on how we protect them from environmental hazards.

Environment and health are linked through a number of factors. Poverty causes individuals to spend more time working in harmful environments. This can lead to mental illness from stress alone, or increased risk of contracting certain diseases. Environmental hazards such as toxic chemicals in homes or workplace accidents at work sites can also have severe effects on health.

Environment affects health by altering biological processes in ways that are detrimental or beneficial to one's health. Pollution is an example of something that detrimentally alters health. Radiation from nuclear power plants, oil refineries, and other sources can cause cancer. Extreme weather conditions like hurricanes, floods, and droughts can result in death or serious injury to those who suffer them. Environments can also be beneficial for health. For instance, fresh air, beautiful landscapes, and close-knit communities help people feel happier and less stressed out.

Healthy environments provide us with opportunities to learn how to prevent disease and promote wellness.

About Article Author

Susan Harrell

Susan Harrell is a zoologist with a passion for animals and their habitats. She graduated from the University of Arizona, where she studied herpetology and ecology. Susan has spent years studying amphibians in Panama’s rain forest and monkeys deep in the jungles of Uganda.

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