Harmful effects of dust


While pollution remains to be one of the most pertinent concerns of our generation, most of us tend to live in the illusion that it doesn’t affect us directly or that we are still away from the ultimate harms of it. This leads to us not only ignoring the presence of dust and pollution around us but also contributing to it. However, we can’t live in this make believe world for very long. This is because a lot of people across the world have started experiencing directly the inevitable effects of this air contamination.  Dust, which we usually see as one of the less harmful air pollutants has equally dangerous effect on us. We will take a look at some of those harms in this article and what are the sources of production of dust and the possible preventions.


Dust, which constitute both larger and smaller particles can be the major cause of certain minor ailments as well as some dangerous life threatening diseases. The larger particles when inhaled may not usually go really deep inside and can remain stuck in the nose or the throat. This can result in irritation in the nose or throat. It can also lead to coughing and sneezing. While problems like coughing and sneezing though doesn’t really mean any serious health problems, these things in themselves can sometime become a serious issue. Like sneezing strongly can result in permanent stopping of heart. These dust particles when also exposed to naked eyes can be extremely dangerous. It can result in many kinds of eye infections and flues. Problems like blood shot eyes can arise. Although in most cases these eye infections are temporary and can be cured, one should always be careful, for your eyes are extremely delicate organs. You must be careful when you go out especially in places where you are prone to dust. You must take proper care to protect your eyes. Wear an eye shade or spectacles if possible and avoid the use of contact lenses at such places. Our skin is at an equal risk from this dust. This is especially true for people with sensitive skin type. Direct exposure to dust may result in development of skin infections and problems like rashes, pimples and acne. Protection of skin from dust is also important. This can simply be done by wearing appropriate and properly covered clothes. Also applying sunscreen or any other good body lotion will do the job and keep our skin protected.


The smaller, less visible particles are in fact more dangerous than the larger ones. Due to their small size they manage to reach deeper inside our bodies through inhalation. These dangerously small particles can include anything from acid to metals to soil or chemicals and radioactive materials. I suppose you yourself can imagine the serious effects of these particles when they enter out bodies. Large amount of this dust results in its accumulation in the lungs which is the reason for certain diseases like silicosis. Silicosis is a form of lung disease, marked by inflammation and scarring in the form of nodular lesions in the upper lobes of the lungs. The main characteristics of this disease is shortness of breath, cough, fever and cyanosis. It happens mostly to people who are constantly exposed to silica dust. Therefore, silicosis is a very common disease amongst the workers exposed to silica dust produced by grinding and drilling operations. This in turn may also result in tuberculosis which is a life threatening disease. Other examples of dust at various workplaces include, metallic dust such as lead and cadmium and their components. People who work in fields are constantly exposed to dust from pesticides and other bulk chemical dust. They are also exposed to other kinds of organic dust such as vegetables dust, flour, wood, cotton, tea and pollens. Now, talking about the radioactive dust that comes from nuclear explosions in space continuously, fall on earth either directly or through rain when they remain suspended in the atmosphere. Overexposure to radioactive substances can be very dangerous to our body.


To actually prevent ourselves from the harmful effects of this dust it is extremely important for us to know what the main sources of dust are. Dust is generally generated on improper roads where running vehicles make the dust fly and affect us directly. It is also very common in industrial or construction sites, where work with various materials like cement, sand etc. generate dust. Other sources like exposed river beds are equally important to be mentioned. In coastal areas and river banks, wind blows at great speed thus making the sand deposited at the river banks a cause of dust. One should be very careful when at such places because dust at such high speed can easily get into our eyes and nose thus causing irritation and other problems. Proper care to prevent oneself from dust is extremely important. First of all, you should avoid going to places where you are directly prone to dust in the first place. Even if you do, precautions should be taken to shield your eyes, nose and skin from dust. Wear sun glasses and a nose mask if possible. Also apply ample of sunscreen to keep your skin protected. It is always better to prevent yourself from any sort of harm than cure it later. Take care!



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