PregnantWe already know that air pollution can have a serious impact on kids’ health and development. It’s been confirmed that air pollution is linked to slowed lung function growth in children. Now there’s another really good reason to reduce causes of urban air pollution like car emissions.

For the first time, researchers have found a direct link between prenatal exposure to air pollution and lower IQ scores in children. Researchers studied pollutants scientifically known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which include vehicle exhaust and factory emissions. Mothers of children in the high exposure group were likely to have lived close to heavily congested streets, bus depots and other typical sources of city air pollution. Published in the August edition of Pediatrics, the study suggests that exposure to air pollution before birth could have the same harmful effects on the developing brain as exposure to lead.

EarthShare member organizations have long recognized the impact that toxins in our environment can have on the most vulnerable members of our society. Learn more, and find out how you can help protect yourself and your family. Are you a health care provider or parent? Check out EarthShare member Physicians for Social Responsibility’s online Pediatric Environmental Health Toolkit.

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