PM2.5 refers to particles in the air that have a diameter of 2.5 micrometers or less. These particles are small enough to inhale and can cause serious health problems.
When PM2.5 particles are inhaled, they can penetrate deep into the lungs and even enter the bloodstream. This can lead to a number of health problems, including:
Respiratory problems: PM2.5 particles can irritate the airways and cause symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. They can also aggravate existing respiratory conditions, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Cardiovascular problems: PM2.5 particles can increase the risk of heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular problems. This is thought to be due to the particles’ ability to cause inflammation in the blood vessels and the heart.
Cancer: Long-term exposure to PM2.5 particles has been linked to an increased risk of lung cancer.
Premature death: Studies have shown that exposure to PM2.5 particles can lead to premature death, particularly in older adults and people with existing health problems.
Damage to the brain and the nervous system: PM2.5 particles can cause inflammation in the brain and nervous system, leading to neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration.
It is important to note that PM2.5 particles can come from many sources such as wildfire smoke, industrial pollution, and vehicle emissions. Therefore, it is important to take steps to reduce exposure to PM2.5 particles as much as possible.