Before getting into the topic, let’s discuss two terms- Weather and Climate. Many are still committing mistakes believing that both the terms are the same. But there is a significant difference between the two. Weather refers to the short term changes in the Atmosphere. On the other hand, Climate describes the Weather for a long period of time. Here we discuss Climate change and how it affects human health and life.
The Changing Climate
When does Climate change occur? Climate change occurs when the Earth’s Climate System ( Atmosphere, hydrosphere, Cryosphere, Biosphere, and Lithosphere) result in new Weather patterns that end for a few decades or millions of years. This changing climate also affects human health and hygiene. Climate change results in warming temperatures, changes in precipitation, increasing the intensity of some extreme weather events and rising sea levels. All these factors lead to ferocious problems which will really affect human beings very badly. The food we eat, the air we breathe and even the weather we experience everything will be screwed.
Doctors suggest that people should be prepared to face such kind of difficult situations. People having high sensitivity and stability can almost overcome these issues but people who are not having much sensitivity will be vulnerable. So such people should care for themselves and should take the necessary precautions. The effects will be based on a person’s age, gender, behavior, economic status, how much they are exposed to Climate changes, etc. Also, climate change brings different types of infectious diseases, as we suffer as monsoon diseases.
Major Effects of Climate Change
The change in Climate leads to many effects. The major effects of Climate change are listed below:
- Infectious Diseases
- Drought and Chronic Water Shortages
- Rising Sea Levels
- Increase in Air Pollutants
Malnutrition refers to the condition for which the body does not receive enough nutrients for proper functioning. It can lead to serious health issues such as stunted growth, eye problems, diabetes, and heart disease. Malnutrition is of two types- Undernutrition and Overnutrition. Undernutrition occurs as a result of not getting enough proteins, calories or micronutrients. Undernutrition leads to low weight and stunted growth. On the other hand, Overnutrition refers to the condition which occurs due to the overconsumption of nutrients, proteins or calories. Overnutrition leads to overweight.
Climate change leads to Malnutrition. Climate change reduces agricultural yields so that the nutritional value of staple crops will also be poor which will eventually lead to Malnutrition. According to research, Malnutrition accounts for 19 percent of ill health and premature death globally. Undernutrition and Overnutrition affect 2 billion people worldwide. With Climate change becoming more heavier in the future, this condition will even worsen.
A heatwave is an extended period of hot weather which may be accompanied by high humidity. Across the Globe, hot days are experienced more than cold days. This is a scary effect of climate change. Heatwaves are declared when the temperature of a particular day increases by five or more degrees than the usual temperature on that day. Heatwaves can cause droughts, sunburns, forest fires, and other serious health issues. Sunburn is a major issue that affects humans during hot days. Many people who are performing hard works and field works had become victims of sunburns. The fiery fact is that experts have told that heatwaves will hit the Universe with greater power in the coming future.
Infectious Disease is always a serious issue that threatens humans. The change in climate leads to many infectious diseases. We know that climate change includes alternations in any of the climate variables such as temperature, precipitation, wind, and sunshine. This leads to the survival and reproduction of disease-causing pathogens as well as their hosts. Disease caused by hosts such as Malaria, Dengue Fever, Chikungunya, Nipah, etc. had taken the lives of many. Who will forget the Nipah outbreak which gave a horror experience in Calicut and Malappuram districts in Kerala last year? The Calicut Medical College hospital even had an isolated ward for people affected by Nipah. Such was the impact made by this deadly disease. The doctors in Calicut along with other local people of Calicut worked really had to wipe out this infectious disease. Finally, even though they succeeded in preventing this deadly disease, by then it took the lives of many. Change in climate can also increase the amount of Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere and can affect food and nutrition. Contaminated food and water can also cause diseases such as Typhoid, Cholera, etc. which will badly affect our health. Diseases vary according to the change in the climate. Diseases like Nipah, Typhoid, Cholera, Chicken Pox, Measles, Mumps, etc. usually occurs in the summer season. Diseases like Common Cold, Influenza, Pneumonia, Strep Throat usually occur in the winter season.
Infectious disease is one of the main problems humans face due to climate change. Compared to other effects of climate change, the infectious disease had taken the lives of many. It is better to take precautions and care for yourself from such infections instead of getting affected by it. And remember treatment by yourself is not an adequate way when the much an infection affects you, immediately go to a hospital and get the necessary treatments required.
Drought And Chronic Water Shortages
Drought is another effect of Climate change. It occurs as a result of strong heatwaves. When more Greenhouse gases are released into the air, the temperature also increases and as a result, more moisture evaporates from lakes, rivers, ponds, streams and other water bodies. Drought is a severe calamity that took many lives. Nearly 40 percent of the World is dependent on agriculture. Just imagine if drought occurs in such an agricultural area. They will be surely screwed. It is sure that we cannot completely prevent drought but if we touch our soul, we can almost control it. The only way to control this natural calamity is to cut the greenhouse gases that trigger climate change.
Rising Sea Levels
Rising sea levels is one of the most crucial effects of climate change. Average sea levels have accumulated over eight inches since 1880 with about three of those inches were acquired in the last 25 years. Every year the sea rises another0.13 inches. It occurs mainly due to three reasons- Thermal Expansion, Melting Glaciers and loss of Greenland and Antartica’s Ice Sheets. Rising Sea Levels cause serious issues such as high waves which can destroy the habitats of people living near the seashores. Higher sea levels coincide with dangerous Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Tornados which will result in a huge storm and explanation is not required for the rest. Hence Rising Sea Levels is a serious, overwhelming and dangerous issue.
Changes in climate can lead to an increase in air pollutants. Air pollutants may lead to asthma and other respiratory and cardiovascular effects. They can also cause allergies.
We now understood all the effects of climate change. Yes, climate change is a natural activity. But have you ever wondered why all these craps occur? The answer to this question is hidden in the above explanations- man. Yes, man is the main culprit for this. Why are you pouring greenhouse gases into the atmosphere? why are you disposing garbages on rivers and lakes? why are you cutting trees (deforestation)? why are you using and burning plastics? Why are you doing all the deeds which are actually not meant to do? Why are you simply destroying mother nature? For all these bad deeds, mother nature replies with all the problems mentioned above. Everything will be all right unless man becomes good and kind-hearted. Everything is in our hands. Let’s pray for a better tomorrow.