During the last few days, the inhabitants of New York have seen how a smoke cloud has covered the horizon, even reaching to hide iconic places like the Statue of Liberty. This smoke cloud, caused by intense forest fires affecting Canada, directly impacts air quality and puts the health of about 100 million people at risk.
New York has joined the list of metropolitan areas with the worst air quality in the world for hours. For this reason, authorities have canceled outdoor activities and recommended that citizens limit outdoor activities.
Experts in Canada have warned that these conditions are likely to persist throughout the summer, and in Ottawa, a warning was issued about air quality and its consequences for people’s health, especially those with asthma or other respiratory problems. Likewise, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classified air quality in much of the northeast as “unhealthy.”
What effects can this smoke cloud have on health?
The presence of this smoke cloud in New York can have various consequences for the health of exposed individuals, with immediate effects such as:
– Inflammation in the eyes, nose, and throat.
– Difficulty breathing.
– Elevated pulse.
– Chest pain.
On the other hand, prolonged or intense exposure to smoke can cause:
– Difficulty breathing.
– Exacerbation of pre-existing respiratory conditions such as asthma.
While the effects of this smoke cloud on health may vary depending on individual sensitivity and the duration and intensity of exposure, the groups that may be most affected are children, elderly people, pregnant women and unborn children, as well as people with respiratory problems or heart disease.
How to protect yourself from the smoke cloud covering New York?
To protect health in the midst of this smoke cloud, the population has been asked to pay attention to the following recommendations:
Monitor air quality reports and bulletins, as well as updates from local and state authorities. Follow instructions and precautionary measures!
Avoid direct exposure
Limit outdoor exposure as much as possible when air quality is poor due to the smoke cloud. During these times, it is best to stay indoors, preferably in spaces with adequate air filtration. If you need to go out, use N95 protective masks or other masks suitable for fine particles.
Improve indoor air quality
Keep windows and doors closed to prevent smoke from entering. Use air purifiers with filters that can help reduce suspended particles.
Protect vulnerable groups
If you have family or friends who belong to high-risk groups, make sure they are taking the necessary measures to protect their health. Provide support and assistance, and seek additional resources to ensure their well-being.
Take care of your personal health
During smoke exposure, it is essential to take care of your own health. Drink enough water to stay hydrated and avoid exposure to other sources of pollution. If you experience severe or persistent symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.
The presence of a smoke cloud in New York raises real concerns about human health. Follow the recommendations of health authorities.
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Request medical attention
If you have been exposed to the smoke cloud that is currently affecting New York City and feel that your health has been affected by such exposure, especially if you are within high-risk population groups, it is important to consult a doctor promptly.
At Formé Medical Center, we have a specialized team that can assist you during this contingency and any other health emergency. Do not hesitate to call us at 914-723-4900 or schedule an appointment. Remember! Being alert and following prevention measures is essential to maintain optimal health and keep vulnerable people safe.