Air Pollution May Cause Dementia

Posted: Feb 1 2017, 8:02am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

 

Air Pollution May Cause Dementia
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  • Air Pollutants may cause Dementia in Female Senior Citizens
 

Apparently, environmental pollutants may be the cause of dementia in female senior citizens.

Very small particles of air pollution may increase the risk of dementia in females who are in their senescence. These air-borne sources of dirt normally come from power plants and vehicles. Alzheimer’s disease risk was also present besides the chances of contracting dementia.

According to the EPA, elderly women who live in regions with excessive amounts of such pollutants seem to have greater chances of cognitive decline. The percentage is 81% and these selfsame females are 92% as likely to develop dementia later on too.    

The findings are proof that the environment matters and keeping it clean is not just a cosmetic issue. It is necessary for life and is not something we can take for granted.

Air pollution is the worst of offenders as far as dementia risk is concerned. The tiny little particles of fossil fuels tend to go through the nasal cavities and enter the brain.

The cells in the brain treat these particles as antigens and thus inflammation is the standard action that the body takes as a response and reaction to this threat. 

Ultimately, Alzheimer’s is what the female patients get stuck with and it is a virtual death sentence that gets carried out over a prolonged period of time.

Although the link between air pollutants and Alzheimer’s is a relatively new finding, it may be true for all we know. Smoking tobacco has been known to cause a degeneration of the brain too.

Especially females with the APOE4 gene were more susceptible to this tendency. They eventually and invariably contracted Alzheimer’s. This is the first such study carried out in the USA.

It was conducted on lab mice and it showed without a shadow of doubt that neurons in the hippocampus were damaged and thus vulnerable to Alzheimer’s and dementia.   

The main pollutant was known as PM2.5. These particles are normally inhaled unconsciously which makes them carry double the danger.

Even a human hair is much bigger in diameter than one of these fine particles. Their small size makes them sneaky culprits that cause brain degeneration and cognitive decline.

Also women across 48 states were tracked by the scientists. Several factors were taken into account and thus the results were solely based upon the effects of this pollutant and the female brain in its senescent state.

Pollution seems to know no borders or boundaries. Nor does it differentiate between race, age and sex. A thorough cleaning up of the environment may the first and most important step in reversing this trend.

The seminal study was published in the Nature journal Translational Psychiatry.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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