Summary: A new study ties air pollution concentrations to dispensed medications for psychiatric illnesses.
Source: Umeå University.
New research from Umeå University in Sweden indicates that dispensed medication for psychiatric diagnosis can be related to air pollution concentrations. The study covers a large part of the Swedish population and has been published in the journal BMJ Open.
More and more studies show that the brain and human cognitive development are affected by pollution.
In a new study conducted by a research team at Umeå University, the correlation between exposure to air pollution in residential areas and children’ and adolescents’ psychiatric health was studied. The study was performed by looking at register-based data, where dispensed medications of all Swedes are registered, together with Swedish National Register data of air pollution concentrations. The entire population under 18 in the Swedish counties of Stockholm, Västra Götaland, Skåne and Västerbotten were studied.
Stockholm, Västra Götaland and Skåne counties are located in the more densely populated parts in the south and contain the three largest cities in Sweden with a population density of between 68 and 338/km2 whereas Västerbotten County lies the north of Sweden with a population density of 5/ km2. The four counties are different not just in terms of geographic location, size and population density but also with respect to migration, socioeconomic characteristics, urbanisation, and air pollution concentrations.
The results show that air pollution increased the risk of having dispensed medication for at least one psychiatric diagnosis for children and adolescents, the risk increased with 9% with a 10 microgram per cubic meter increased concentration of nitrogen dioxide even after socioeconomic and demographic factors were taken into account.
“The results can mean that a decreased concentration of air pollution, first and foremost traffic-related air pollution, may reduce psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents,” says researcher Anna Oudin, the Unit for Occupational and Environmental Medicine at the Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, who led the study.
About this psychology research article
Funding: The work was funded by Vårdalstiftelsen with the Dnr VÅ 2011-25/430 (AO).
Source: Umeå University Image Source: This NeuroscienceNews.com image is in the public domain. Original Research: Full open access research “Association between neighbourhood air pollution concentrations and dispensed medication for psychiatric disorders in a large longitudinal cohort of Swedish children and adolescents” by Anna Oudin, Lennart Bråbäck, Daniel Oudin Åström, Magnus Strömgren, and Bertil Forsberg in BMJ Open. Published online June 3 2016 doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2015-010004
Cite This NeuroscienceNews.com Article
[cbtabs][cbtab title=”MLA”]Umeå University. “Air Pollution Affects Young People’s Psychiatric Health.” NeuroscienceNews. NeuroscienceNews, 8 June 2016. <https://neurosciencenews.com/mental-health-air-pollution-4413/>.[/cbtab][cbtab title=”APA”]Umeå University. (2016, June 8). Air Pollution Affects Young People’s Psychiatric Health. NeuroscienceNews. Retrieved June 8, 2016 from https://neurosciencenews.com/mental-health-air-pollution-4413/[/cbtab][cbtab title=”Chicago”]Umeå University. “Air Pollution Affects Young People’s Psychiatric Health.” https://neurosciencenews.com/mental-health-air-pollution-4413/ (accessed June 8, 2016).[/cbtab][/cbtabs]
Association between neighbourhood air pollution concentrations and dispensed medication for psychiatric disorders in a large longitudinal cohort of Swedish children and adolescents
Objective To investigate associations between exposure to air pollution and child and adolescent mental health.
Setting Swedish National Register data on dispensed medications for a broad range of psychiatric disorders, including sedative medications, sleeping pills and antipsychotic medications, together with socioeconomic and demographic data and a national land use regression model for air pollution concentrations for NO2, PM10 and PM2.5.
Participants The entire population under 18 years of age in 4 major counties. We excluded cohort members whose parents had dispensed a medication in the same medication group since the start date of the register. The cohort size was 552 221.
Main outcome measures Cox proportional hazards models to estimate HRs and their 95% CIs for the outcomes, adjusted for individual-level and group-level characteristics.
Results The average length of follow-up was 3.5 years, with an average number of events per 1000 cohort members of ∼21. The mean annual level of NO2 was 9.8 µg/m3. Children and adolescents living in areas with higher air pollution concentrations were more likely to have a dispensed medication for a psychiatric disorder during follow-up (HR=1.09, 95% CI 1.06 to 1.12, associated with a 10 µg/m3 increase in NO2). The association with NO2 was clearly present in 3 out of 4 counties in the study area; however, no statistically significant heterogeneity was detected.
Conclusion There may be a link between exposure to air pollution and dispensed medications for certain psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents even at the relatively low levels of air pollution in the study regions. The findings should be corroborated by others.
“Association between neighbourhood air pollution concentrations and dispensed medication for psychiatric disorders in a large longitudinal cohort of Swedish children and adolescents” by Anna Oudin, Lennart Bråbäck, Daniel Oudin Åström, Magnus Strömgren, and Bertil Forsberg in BMJ Open. Published online June 3 2016 doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2015-010004