Climate change-related allergies could put more kids in ER

More children could wind up in emergency rooms because of allergy attacks spurred by climate change, according to experts.

A June 6, 2019 article in Yale Climate Connections outlined how rising temperatures caused by climate change are already lengthening allergy season. With spring starting earlier and fall starting later, people are being exposed to pollen for longer periods of time. In addition, studies have shown that higher carbon dioxide levels in the air can cause plants to produce more pollen. Children are most vulnerable to rising pollen levels because of their smaller airways, experts said.

Aaron Bernstein, co-director of Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Center for Climate, Health, and the Global Environment (C-CHANGE), said that asthma attacks are the most common allergy-related reason that children wind up in emergency rooms.

“To really help these kids, it’s not just about giving antihistamines,” Bernstein said. “I think the more we realize that our children’s health is at stake, people are going to say, ‘We need to do something about this.’”

Read the Yale Climate Connections article: Climate change could make children’s allergies worse

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