Teenagers! They are known for being reckless, disobedient, and making poor decisions. That is a natural part of human development and the reckless behavior is linked to the composition of the premature brain. Although, recent studies are showing there is more to the story than simply brain composition. Air pollution is now shown to exuberate the typical “teen” behavior and cause an increase in teen delinquency.
Tiny pollution particles called particulate matter2.5 (PM2.5) are behind it all. They are 30 times smaller than a strand of hair- have detrimental effects. When inhaled, the particles make their way to your heart, lungs, and inflame the brain. In particular, PM2.5 effects the structure and neural networks, the most important influencers of behavior.
The study was conducted on teens ages 9-18 in urban Los Angeles. In order to fully confirm this scientific breakthrough, it is imperative a larger group of subjects be tested ideally in cities.
Overall, this study, published on Dec. 13 in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology begs the question of what we are doing to help our planet. Climate change is a growing issue and must be dealt with immediately. This can take form in shorter showers, carpooling to work, or donating money to environmental science-based research. Regardless, it is critical we all join together to repair our planet and save our brains.