Air Pollution and Pregnancy

⭐️ What can be done to maintain fetus health?

Congratulations on your growing family!

Pregnancy is a period when a woman needs to constantly be taking care of her health. Because this time there are two of you in the boat. Parents are responsible for a fragile well-being of a child.

Potential Dangers of Being Exposed to Air Pollution During Pregnancy

Low birth weight
A typical pregnancy is giving birth to a baby weighing from 6 to 9 pounds at a term of 38-40 weeks. Babies under 5 pounds 8 ounces are considered "low birth weight."

On average, 1 out of 12 children in America is born underweight - for several reasons - it is still assumed that the cause of the complication is exposure to air pollution during pregnancy.
Preterm birth
According to a study by the Stockholm Environment Institute, nearly 3 million babies per year are born prematurely due to air pollution problems.

18% of annual preterm births were due to exposure to particulate matter. If they were born prematurely, children are at risk of neurological disorders and physical disabilities. Although preterm birth can happen for many reasons, air pollution exposure should be avoided.
A Harvard study in 2018 revealed that women exposed to particulate matter during the third trimester were more likely to have a baby with autism, especially if they lived near a highway where PM levels are highest.

Note: Women exposed to the same PM level at the beginning of pregnancy did not experience an increased risk of having a baby with autism.
Air pollution intensifies asthma. During pregnancy, asthma can cause preeclampsia, a condition in which blood pressure rises and liver and kidney function weaken.

Through the elimination of triggers and the prevention of asthma, you can achieve an optimal stable state for you and your child. If no action is taken to treat asthma, your baby will suffer from a lack of oxygen, which will lead to poor growth, premature birth, and low birth weight.

Studies show that exposure to air pollution increases the chances of a fetus developing asthma later from the age of 4 to 12 years old since PM breaches the placenta.
During pregnancy, all organs of the body develop and the effect of pollutants can affect these organs, as well as the entire fetus in a way that can have life-long consequences.

According to the World Health Organization:

Air pollution contributes to 4.2 million deaths each year.

In 1973, at the origins of studies on the effects of air pollution on childbirth in Los Angeles, a link between the effects of air pollution in the womb and low birth weight was found. Since then, researchers have uncovered various factors affecting the health of babies.

Prenatal effects of air pollution from vehicles can also affect the birth weight of babies, periods of pregnancy, and lung health after birth and later in life.

Studies show that exposure to pollution while in the womb may also lead to sleep disorders and behavioral problem

Real Lab Studies and the Results

In animal behavior studies at Texas A&M University researches conducted experiments with rats, exposing pregnant females to ultrafine ammonium sulfate particles. Ammonium sulfate is a common air pollutant from industry and vehicle emissions. In the study, they discovered that offsprings of pollutant-exposed rats had lower birth weights, were born sooner, and were more likely to be stillborn.

In studies of humans, the pollutant type is not as important as the size. The smaller the particles are, the more danger they bring to the embryones.
And here's the explanation why

The small particles get deeper into the body than the big particles
PM that is smaller than 2.5 μm in diameter, and especially ultrafine particles that are 0.1 μm or smaller, can move through tissue. They go through cell membranes and build up in lung lining cells. 0.1 μm particles can cross the blood-brain barrier and can reach the placenta.

The ability of very small particles to travel through the mother's body and potentially into the fetus could be how air pollutants cause health and developmental problems in children
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A number of epidemiological studies support a link between air quality and poor health outcomes. Despite the evidence data, based on series of scientific experiments conducted at the universities of Texas, California, and Harvard, correlation studies are silent and cannot accurately explain the mechanism of how developing embryos can suffer from exposure to air pollution by their mothers.

How to Maintain Fetus Health

Simple house cleaning
1. Clean up the dust build-up regularly and vacuum the carpet or the floor
2. Change your chemical household cleaners to non-chemical ones
3. Open windows to refresh the room air (for at least 15 min a day)

Professional cleaning
1. Get your AC filters cleaned once a year
2. Air ducts and Dryer vent cleaning is also a must on annual basis
3. Make sure there's no Mold spores in your bathroom or pantry
, if there is a course of contamination - use professional service for UV lamps to burn the spores out
Air Quality Monitor set up
Read on the Case Study page how beneficial Monitoring Air Quality is and what problems it helps to solve.
The automated system, that helps to regulate airflow, minimize VOC, CO2 and PM2 levels. The best solution on the market for 2019-2020.
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