According to a new study, people who live near to high-traffic roadways areas are greater susceptible to developing the neurological disorders and are at higher risk of developing dementia than those who live farther away. According to the researchers, air pollutants can get into the bloodstream and lead to inflammation, which is linked to cardiovascular disease and possibly other conditions such as diabetes.
Researchers from Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) in Canada, found that people who lived within 50 meters of high-traffic roads had a seven per cent higher chances of developing dementia compared to those who lived more than 300 meters away from busy roads. At over 200 metres, there was no elevated risk of dementia.
More than 6.5 million Ontario residents between age 20-85 are examined by researchers to investigate the correlation between living close to major roads and dementia, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis.
Scientists identified 243,611 cases of dementia, 31,577 cases of Parkinson’s disease, and 9,247 cases of multiple sclerosis in Ontario between 2001 and 2012.
As urban centres become more densely populated and more congested with vehicles on major roads, Copes suggests the findings of this paper could be used to help inform municipal land use decisions as well as building design to take into account air pollution factors and the impact on residents.
(with inputs from PTI)