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Air pollution linked to psychotic episodes in adolescents, the study said



A new study associates air pollution with psychotic experiences in adolescents.

The study, conducted by scientists at King's College London, was published Wednesday in JAMA Psychiatry.

The results may explain why adolescents growing up in urban areas are at greater risk for psychosis, according to a study release.

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found that psychotic experiences among adolescents in urban areas were more prevalent, "Newbury said in the release. "While the study failed to show that pollutants produced psychotic experiences among adolescents, our findings suggest that air pollution can be a factor in the link between city life and psychotic experiences."

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A psychotic experience may include listening to voices and extreme paranoia. These experiences tend to be more common among adolescents than adults, but adults are more likely to experience psychotic disorders or other mental health problems.

The researchers used information from the E-Risk study, which contains data from 2,232 children born in England and Wales.

The scientists used hourly estimates of air pollution from places where teens, at the age of 1

7, spent most of their time calculating their exposure to air pollution. They also used private interviews about their psychotic experiences when they were 18 years old.

Even taking into account the risk factors for psychosis, researchers found that psychotic experiences were "much more common" for adolescents who had the highest exposure to air pollution, consisting of nitrogen, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, and tiny particles.

"Children and adolescents are most susceptible to the effects of air pollution on the air due to the youthfulness of the brain and respiratory system," said Professor Frank Kelly of Environmental Health at King's College London, the co-author of Study said:

"Given that 70% of the world's population will live in cities by 2050, uncovering the mechanisms that link the urban environment to psychosis should be a top priority for health," added Kelly [19659015]
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