People who live in a highly polluted area have a higher risk of depression and anxiety than those who live with cleaner air, a new study says.
The study, published Wednesday in the journal JAMA Psychiatry, found that people who were exposed to higher amounts of multiple air pollutants for a long period – including particle pollution, nitrogen dioxide and nitrogen oxides – had an increased risk of depression and anxiety.
Particle pollution, also known as particulate matter, is the mix of solid and liquid droplets floating in the air, the US Environmental Protection Agency says. It can come in the form of dirt, dust, soot or smoke. Coal- and natural gas-fired power plants create it, as do cars, agriculture, unpaved roads, construction sites and wildfires.