When we hear the words ‘climate change’ we all think about hotter summers, more rain and the melting ice caps, but have you ever considered how climate change might impact our health?
Don’t worry, the purpose of this blog isn’t to scare you, it’s to help highlight the importance of working together to fight climate change so we can all enjoy a healthier future! We know we have sparked your interest, so how can climate change impact human health? Let us tell you –
Climate change impacts human health both directly and indirectly through changing the severity, length or frequency of climate related events. For example, this year in the UK we experienced a significant heatwave with the hottest ever temperature being recorded at a whopping 40.3°C (it was great for a few days but then things got REALLY hot). Below, we will outline a key impact of climate change and how this could impact human health in years to come:
Extreme Heat: In recent years we have experience more extreme heat in the UK and for longer periods of time. As a result, we are likely to experience more heat related illness such as heat stroke, heat exhaustion and heat cramps.
Outdoor Air Quality: Climate change is contributing towards increased temperatures and a change in rain patterns. In some circumstances more heat and less rain can lead to wildfires and a decrease in the quality of the air that we breathe.
Flooding: Rising sea levels due to the melting ice caps leads to more flooding events. From this we could see more injuries along with increased exposure to contaminated water.
Mental Health and Wellbeing: We have touched on some physical effects of climate change, but how could this effect our mental health? Climate change impacts, especially extreme weather could increase our expose to events such as storms, hurricanes and flooding. All these events can result in damage to our homes and infrastructure and if we are unable to go about our daily lives, this could have an impact on our mental health and wellbeing.
The purpose of this blog isn’t to scare you, it is to encourage change! What we have just mentioned above is likely to be at its worst in a few years' time, which means we have the chance to slow down climate change and likelihood of these impacts. What do you do to fight climate change?
Let us know in the comments below!
Team Cheeky Panda