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Autism risk: Just another reason to combat pollution

When a family is expecting a child, they like to believe that they are in control of the situation and that the baby will be healthy. For the most part, kids are born healthy, but not all are born without health complications. A recent environmental study gives parents a big reason to hope that the air that they are breathing during pregnancy is relatively clean.

A study published in the journal of Environmental Health Perspectives suggests that there is a link between high levels of air pollution and a child's risk of having autism when he is born. Based on the findings, it looks as though poor air quality might impact fetuses, increasing the chance that they are born with the disorder.

Many children and adults with autism lead full, rewarding lives. Still, the condition can certainly be a hardship and is one that most parents wouldn't hope for their children when they are in the womb. If the link that the study suggests exists between air pollution and autisim is real, then parents-to-be might want to do some thorough research regarding the air quality of their community before accepting a certain place as their home.

On a wider level, the public everywhere should take the findings seriously. The study reveals that high levels of air pollution could increase the chance of a baby being born with autism by two times. If everyone, including businesses, doesn't make protecting air quality a goal, not doing so could be a direct threat to the health of this country's future generations. 

Source: Live Science, "Autism linked with air-pollution exposure during pregnancy," Bahar Gholipour, June 18, 2013

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