Poor Air Quality Linked To Autism:
We already know that air pollution is bad for the environment and our health, causing respiratory illnesses and serious health conditions. But new research on the effects of air pollution has found that there might be a link between autism and air pollution. Studies done by the University of Pittsburgh Schools of Health Sciences have found links to exposure to fine particulate air pollution during a woman’s pregnancy through a child’s first two years of life increases that child’s chances of developing autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
More studies are being done to confirm the link, but the correlation is there. The study followed an investigation of children located in southwestern Pennsylvania and the findings published in the Environmental Research publication. According to lead author Evelyn Talbott, Dr.P.H., professor of epidemiology at Pitt Public Health, further investigation is still needed to determine what possible biological mechanisms are creating the association to better understand the link. Still, the study is a step in the right direction to better understanding what causes autism, a condition that affects one in every 68 children.
Autism disorders are developmental disabilities that seem to range in severity. These disabilities are usually marked by difficulty with communication, social impairment, and repetitive behaviors. The study involved a population-based case-control study of several families without and with children with ASD living in six different southwestern Pennsylvania areas and obtained information on where the mothers lived before, during and after they got pregnant. It seems that pollutants in the air are neurotoxins that are passed from the mother to the fetus as it’s still developing, causing certain genetic mutations that are associated with autism. From there, they were able to estimate how much exposure to a type of air pollution they called PM2.5. These are particles in the air that are small - 2.5 micrometers in diameter, which is about 1/30th the average width of one single piece of human hair.
Certain particles that are classified as PM2.5 include things like soot, smoke, dirt, and dust, which are mainly dangerous because they are really small and can get into the deepest parts of one’s lungs and enter their bloodstream. And according to the American Lung Association, this part of Pennsylvania is always ranked among the country’s worst regions for PM2.5 levels, making the studies that much stronger.
So what does this ultimately mean? Clean air is important, especially in the home since that’s where we spend the most time. We have to be vigilant about the need to improve air quality, and that starts in the home where we are most vulnerable. Trying to get your community and city to take initiatives for cleaner air might be harder to do, that doesn’t mean you can’t take control in your own hands within your own home. Now the question is: How to do that?
Simple…just install a whole-house air purifier by Aprilaire in your home! Not only is clean air imperative to a healthy family, but it can have a positive effect on children with autism. These high-efficiency Aprilaire air purifiers remove pollutants in your home like mold, bacteria, pollen, viruses, pet dander and asthma and allergy triggers while protecting your home by keeping your HVAC system working more efficiently.
In fact, Aprilaire’s whole-home air purifier has been tested, and results found that it traps up to 99% of airborne pollen, as well as mold and spore-sized particles, which are the most dangerous to your health! Frew Plumbing in Pittsburgh, PA, is your local Aprilaire pro and can easily help you choose the right whole-home air purifier that’s right for you and your family.
In fact, they recently installed one for a client who has a son with autism and the family has reported back positive reviews on the unit. They’ve seen a huge difference in their child, reporting to Frew Plumbing that his focus has improved and he’s had fewer episodes since getting the whole-home air purifier installed, further demonstrating that clean air helps those with autism.
And even if you currently don’t have any children with autism, an Aprilaire whole-home air purifier system can benefit the entire family. You’ll be able to breathe better, and if you’re pregnant, you will already be helping your unborn child by giving them the gift of clean air.
Call Frew Plumbing today to find out more about why your home’s air quality matters!