Children's lungs are especially sensitive to the harmful effects of air pollution. That's because they breathe faster than adults, which causes them to inhale a lot of pollution relative to their weight.
Use care when you take your young child outdoors, especially for physical activities. When children exercise, they breathe more heavily than normal. And they breathe more through their mouths than their noses. This allows pollution to be inhaled more deeply into the lungs where it can cause permanent damage.
- Don't take your child out when the air quality is unhealthy.
This index is often reported in the news. You can also go to www.airnow.gov to find it.
- Go outside early in the morning in the summer and on days where smog may develop.
On days when air is stagnant and temperatures reach over 90 °F (32 °C), smog levels usually peak in mid- to late afternoon.
- Stay away from areas with heavy traffic.
Current as of: March 1, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board: All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.