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Simple tips that can help protect your lungs from air pollution during Diwali

Come Diwali, India’s most popular festival, and firecrackers go pop, releasing toxic fumes into the air. It is also a time of duress for those who have chronic pulmonary disorders, asthma and other respiratory issues. Asthmatics may have the following symptoms: coughing, wheezing, tightness of the chest and shortness of breath.

Moreover, people infected with or vulnerable to Covid-19 are at greater risk from firecracker fumes. A study by Harvard University and another published in the ‘Cardiovascular Research’ journal states that exposure to air pollution increases the risk of mortality and severe symptoms of Covid-19.

Though pandemic-led restrictions curbed firecracker use during the festival, it wasn’t enough to help lakhs of Indians. Affected by Covid-19, they continue to experience Long-Covid-19 Syndrome and are vulnerable to aggravated respiratory issues.

So here is how to protect yourself from air pollution during Diwali:

* Avoid lighting candles and diyas indoors, which will keep indoor pollution in check. Opt for sustainable LED lights as they do not release particulate matter.

* Avoid places where people are bursting firecrackers so you do not inhale the fumes.

* Wear a face mask outdoors. Choose an anti-pollution face mask that can block fumes from entering the respiratory system.

* To avoid feeling too suffocated, stay indoors with the air conditioner on.

* Consider buying an air purifier if you stay in a place with poor air quality. Air purifiers filter out the pollutants, toxins and allergens from indoor air.

* If you have a pre-existing respiratory condition, keep your emergency medicines, nebulisers and other medical kits handy at all times. Take your medication, if any, without fail.

* If you are asthmatic or suffer from respiratory illness, keep a rescue inhaler with you all the time.

* Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Nutritious food may improve your overall health.

* Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and prevent hyperacidity.

* If…

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