New Delhi, December 6- We hear a lot of talk on pollution and it’s long term effects on various important organs of the body with special emphasis on lungs and respiratory diseases, heart ailments it could cause and the damage to children’s learning process but seldom do we discuss the effect of toxic pollutants severely affecting our skin, which is the first to be exposed to pollution.
The most upper layer of the epidermis is the part of skin which faces direct impact of pollution as it plays the role of a barrier.
The origins of the air pollution could be environmental or anthropic. Major air pollutants are the solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), nitrogen oxides (NOx), particulate matter (PM)polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and cigarette smoke.
One of the dangerous variants of pollution is pro-oxidant smog which is formed when various kinds of air pollutants, along with the combined effect of UVR, come into contact spelling more danger to our health.
Moreover, pollution can also potentially reduce calcium in the body which is further detrimental for skin health.
Speaking to Healthwire, Dr. Ahmad Zaheer, Senior Dermatologist, Max Multi Speciality Hospital, said, “A less popularly known but significant effect which bad air quality and pollutants can have on us is depletion in calcium in the body. This deficiency happens because in a polluted atmosphere the amount of sun rays reaching earth is far lesser than in normal days. Hence a body’s inability to get adequate sun rays while living under pollution for along-term can result into serious calcium deficiencies. Few among common people must know that this depletion can also affect the skin adversely by forming white spots on it. Not only that, constant exposure to pollutants can also make our nails brittle. Hence we need to be very careful skin wise.”