We all know how important it is to lead a healthy life, and the importance of eating healthy, exercising well and looking after ourselves. But when it comes to taking care of yourself, how often do you think about the quality of the air you are breathing? Probably not that often.

But the quality of the air you breathe can have a sizeable impact on your quality of life. This is especially important when you consider that almost half of all Americans are thought to currently live in areas with unhealthy levels of air pollution.

How is air quality affected in the areas we live?

Fossil Fuels – While there are many different factors that can contribute to air pollution levels, burning of fossil fuels has the biggest impact by some margin. We burn fossil fuels every day to power our cars, trains, trucks and planes. Burning of fossil fuels releases carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide into the air you breathe.

Agriculture and industry – A common side effect of agricultural industries is the release of ammonia – a very harmful gas – into the atmosphere and, therefore, the air we breathe.

Similarly, a large amount of harmful pollutants are released as a result of manufacturing industries, including carbon dioxide and hydrocarbons. The impact of industrial pollution on air quality can be measured all around the globe.

Indoor pollution – There are lots of factors in your home that can lower the air quality there. Aerosols, cleaning products, smoke and painting supplies all release chemicals that can hang in the air, waiting to be breathed in.

Plus, the air pollution outside can very easily enter your home and further damage the quality of the air that you breathe there.

This is why it is so important that you make sure you have a high quality air filter in full working order in your home’s HVAC system, to ensure that the air you are breathing is as clean as it can possibly be.

What impact can air pollution have?

Breathing and heart problems – Prolonged exposure to dangerous levels of air pollution can have a serious, and even lethal, impact on your health. Conditions that can be caused or worsened by air pollution include asthma, pneumonia, reduced lung function and even cancer.

Global warming – Another huge result of air pollution is global warming. As harmful chemicals are released into the air, they deplete the earth’s Ozone layer and cause increased temperatures worldwide. This is leading to increased sea levels, melting ice caps and also causing huge amounts of damage to wildlife and their habitats.

According to the American Lung Association’s recently released ‘State Of The Air’ report, here are the most polluted areas in the country, based on particle pollution:

  1. Fairbanks, Arkansas.
  2. Visalia-Porterville-Hanford, California.
  3. Bakersfield, California.
  4. Los Angeles – Long Beach, California.
  5. Fresno – Madera California.

For more information about the importance of clean air, and to find out how our air filters can help, visit Aireman Filtration now.