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Home »  Pregnancy »  Air Pollution Can Lead To Low Birth Weight, Birth Defects: Here's What You Need To Know

Air Pollution Can Lead To Low Birth Weight, Birth Defects: Here's What You Need To Know

Air pollution is a matter of concern. Apart from affecting the balance of nature, pollutants can harm unborn babies and infants severely. Read here to know air pollution affects pregnant women.

Air Pollution Can Lead To Low Birth Weight, Birth Defects: Here

Low birth weight could be a result of air pollution


  1. Air pollution can be harmful for pregnant women
  2. They should take extra precaution to beat ill effects of air pollution
  3. It is important to take appropriate steps to curb air pollution

Air pollution can harm your health in more ways than you can imagine. Smart cities in Delhi NCR like Gurgaon, Ghaziabad, Faridabad, Noida are some of the most polluted cities in the world. This makes Delhi the most polluted capital city. In addition to that, Delhi has also got an unprecedented growth rate. The rising air pollution is a serious concern as it might cause birth defects and fatalities during pregnancy. A team of researchers from Texas' A&M University conducted an animal model study, to find out the effect of pollutants on pregnant women and babies.

Also read: Not Just Respiratory Diseases, Air Pollution Raises Anxiety, Depression Too

For the research, the group selected pregnant female rats as their sample. They examined the adverse health effects of pollutants such as ammonium sulphate. Lead author of this research, Dr. Renyi Zhang mentions how adverse effects were visible in the sampled pregnant rats, after the study was concluded. These rats exposed to polluted air had shorter gestation period, more stillbirths.

Women who are exposed to air pollutants from vehicles, chimneys during pregnancy are likely to give birth to babies with low birth weight. 

Also read: Car Pollution Caused Asthma In 350,000 Indian Kids

Developed and developing countries utilise coal as a major energy source. This coal burning for energy production produces sulphate. Meanwhile ammonia is produced by automobile, agricultural and animal emissions. This is a serious concern in India, as it is a developing country, where these energy resources are used to the fullest. Of the 30 most polluted cities in the world, 22 out of them are in India. The rising pollution along with the growing population is a national concern. The number of pregnant women exposed to polluted air is also growing, which can affect a lot more babies (sometimes even before they are born). Along with affecting birth weight, pollutants can also damage the heart, brain and other organs. As the concern is alarming (even for future generations), it's high time to take crucial steps to curb out air pollution.

Also read: Do This Breathing Exercise Every Day To Beat Air Pollution

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  1. Conserve energy and buy Energy Star label equipment.
  2. Walk and use manual transports like bicycles.
  3. Use public transports and carpool whenever possible.
  4. Use and burn cleaner fuels like CNG and biogas.
  5. Ensure that you're completing your car's pollution check on time.
  6. Use alternate energy sources like solar energy, hydroelectricity whenever possible.
  7. Avoid burning garbage and dry leaves.

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.


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