Health,environmental experts suggest remedies to citizens about smog


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LAHORE: The health and environmental experts on Sunday said exposure to smog was playing a role in spreading of various health issues, including eye infections, allergies, coughing and irritation in throat.

The experts while shedding light on a number of preventative measures told APP that these could be helpful to deal with the persisting smog, adding smog was resulting in air impurities and pollutants that could be hazardous to a human health.

Dr Khalid Hussain from Services Hospital advised people to move around with face masks to protect themselves from breathing problems, eye, nose and throat infections.

He said wearing protected sunglasses outdoors could be helpful. To thwart augmented allergy and any sort of eye infection, avoid rubbing eyes and frequently use eye drops suggested by eye-specialists.

Drink at least six to eight glasses of water every day  and include hot fluids to daily routine which will help rinsing out the toxins from throat and lungs that could be beneficial in curing cough and sore throat as well, he said.

Dr Tehseen Riaz from Jinnah Hospital said the presence of toxins in the air could aggravate asthma and allergy symptoms, leaving people struggling to breathe.

To a question, he advised citizens that other precautions, including sanitising indoor air using air filters and avoiding outdoor physical activities such as walking or exercising near smoggy and hazy areas.

Chief Meteorologist Muhammad Riaz attributed the lack of rain, pollution, smoke from vehicles, factories and burnt crops to worsening smog situation in the cities.

Director Environment Protection of the Punjab Environment Department Naseem-ur-Rehman said  a number of administrative preventative measures had been adopted to deal with smog.

He said Section 144 had been enforced in the province till December 16 to bar farmers from burning leftover crops waste – a contributor to smog. FIRs will be registered against violators, he added.

The director said around 150 factories causing heavy pollution in the region had been closed down as well.

According to noted climate change expert Dr Mehmood Khalid Qamar, fresh readings about toxic gases, obtained through the recently installed monitoring equipment showed the level of carbon monoxide at 21.29 milligram per metre on The Mall, 17.52 in Mohlanwal, and 6.94 in Gulberg’s Liberty Market, against the maximum permissible limit of 5mpm.

It is pertinent to mention here that the Met Office has released a weather warning describing the smog, comprising nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide and other aerosols, as a result of cold high pressure in the upper atmosphere. Suspended matter accumulates in the lower atmosphere, colliding with water vapour which causes a chain reaction that produces smog.

Meanwhile, motorway police have issued instructions to drivers to reduce speed and switch on fog lights to avoid any untoward incident.—APP