Impact on infectious diseases and mental health


Monsoons are longer and rainfall is irregular

Being located at the edge of the tropical region, Bangladesh experiences some of the wettest monsoons in the world. During the peak of the monsoon, from June to August, the average monthly precipitation decreased by 60 millimeters. On the other hand, the average monthly precipitation for September and October has increased by 43 millimeters, indicating that the monsoon period is gradually lengthening, now extending from March to October. The increase in temperature during the winter months coupled with erratic rainfall has eroded the distinct seasonality in Bangladesh.

Prolonged monsoon due to a change in the precipitation regime

Impact on physical health

A survey of 15,000 people in 3,600 households shed light on the influence of climate variability on physical and mental health.

  • Respiratory disease is likely to increase with increasing temperature and humidity. A 1 ° C increase in temperature increases the likelihood of getting a respiratory infection by 5.7 percentage points, while a 1% increase in humidity increases the chance of getting a respiratory infection by 1.5 percentage points percentage.
  • Waterborne diseases like cholera are likely to decrease with increasing humidity and temperature. A 1% increase in relative humidity reduces the likelihood of contracting water-borne illnesses by 1.6 percentage points, while a 1 ° C increase in average temperature reduces the likelihood of respiratory infections. 4.2 percentage points.
  • Dengue fever expected to increase in Dhaka as climatic conditions become more suitable. Humidity between 60-80%, maximum temperature between 25 ° C and 35 ° C, and rainfall between 200 and 800mm create ideal conditions for mosquitoes. Weather data between 1976 and 2019 indicates that Dhaka is experiencing declining humidity levels, rising temperatures and more summer precipitation. These, along with factors such as urbanization, increase the risk of the spread of dengue fever in Dhaka city.

Impact on mental health

  • Climate change can cause mood swings. But, seasonality has a slightly different impact on anxiety than depression.
  • The level of anxiety disorders increases with temperature and humidity. Increasing the average humidity and average temperature increases the likelihood of having anxiety by 0.3% and 0.8%, respectively.
  • More and more people suffer from depression during the winter. Increasing the temperature reduces the likelihood of depression by 1.6 percent.
  • In addition, women are more likely than men to suffer from depression, while men are more susceptible to anxiety.

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