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How does air pollution damage my health?

 

Air pollution affects your body in lots of ways. It can increase the risk of some health problems, and can make existing health problems worse.

 

Exposure to air pollution can increase cough and phlegm symptoms for adults and it can increase the risk of getting bacterial pneumonia.

 

Over the longer term, your exposure to air pollution can increase your risk of lung cancer. It has also been linked to high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease (heart and blood vessels), including furring of the arteries.

A line illustation of weather symbols, including the sun, a cloud that is raining, and a cloud with lightning

Lots of research is being done around air pollution now. There is emerging evidence that air pollution can increase your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, and that it may increase the risk of getting bladder cancer.

 

Is there a link between air pollution and coronavirus?

Recent media coverage on the link between air pollution and coronavirus has led to increased interest in understanding what air pollution is and the associated health risks. In this video, we spoke to Professor Stephen Holgate, Medical Research Council Clinical Professor of Immunopharmacology and Honorary Consultant Physician within Medicine at the University of Southampton and UK Clean Air Champion to get the low down.

If you would like to find out more about where all the stats, facts and figures have come from, see our references page