Do you or a family member have asthma? According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, our children are almost three times more likely to die from causes related to asthma than white children. Our children also have eight times the death rate from asthma than white children, almost three times the rate of visits to an emergency room, and almost four times the rate of hospital admission due to asthma than white children. See “Asthma and African Americans,” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health.
According to one study, our young people (adolescents) are more harmed by air pollution than other children. The study showed that adolescents with hard-to-treat asthma who were on a medicine program were still harmed by low levels of ozone. Ozone is a gas caused by pollutants and causes smog or haze in the air we breathe.
Low-level ozone causes both respiratory and systemic problems in Black adolescents with asthma even when they are using asthma controller therapy. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Michelle L. Hernandez, Radhika Dhingra, Allison J. Burbank, Krista Todorich, Ceila E. Loughlin, Marcia Frye, Kelly Duncan, Carole Robinette, Katherine Mills, Robert B. Devlin, David B. Peden, David Diaz-Sanchez, Volume 142, Issue 6, 2018, pp 1974-1977.e3, ISSN 0091-6749, See https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaci.2018.08.003.
Below is a hub where you can learn more about asthma. We need to understand better why we are at increased risk of harm from asthma. In addition, we need to let policymakers know that we want stronger regulations to reduce the pollution that is making our asthma symptoms worse.