Air pollution can lead to depression, anxiety: Tips to reduce its risk

Did you know air pollution not only affects physical health but mental health as well. Here's how you can reduce the risk and deal with it.
deal with depression
Air pollution can increase the risk of depression, anxiety: Tips to alleviate the risk. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock
Dr Mickey Mehta Published: 20 Nov 2022, 10:30 am IST
  • 186

Toxic air affects mental health. Fresh air uplifts your mood and stale air makes you feel low. Fresh air also helps you deal with anxiety and depression, gives you confidence, increases oxygen intake, and increases the vital capacity of your lungs to regulate breathing. Basking in some sunshine can also give a positive twist to your mood.

Air pollution effects on mental health

Research on the neurological effects of air pollution has found that increased brain inflammation from PM (particulate matter) exposure along with increased levels of cytokines raises anxiety and depression risk. Pollution particles can cross from the lungs to the blood and in some cases travel up the axon of the olfactory nerve into the brain. When the toxic elements in the air enter the human body, they directly affect the central nervous system. This is also a risk factor in Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s diseases.

Several neurons in the brain are disrupted due to the breathing of toxic air. Those exposed to a high level of toxic air can also have bipolar disorder, personality disorder, and depression.

Deep breathing to alleviate the risk of depression, anxiety

Performing deep breathing exercises every day helps improve the function of your nervous system and energizes your entire being. Toxins are actually anomalies of life that create a lot of Ama (undigested metabolic waste) in the body and to deal with that, to neutralize that, to charge your batteries up – we perform “Poison – B”. It is a perfect antidote for infections, dirt, germs, and viruses in breathing exercises. Poison B is an acronym that stands for,

P = Prevention
O = Of
I = Infection
S = Seeding
O = Optimal
N = Nasal
B = Breathing

It helps empty your lungs through breathing. Viruses, germs, and microbes don’t incubate, so they don’t integrate and they don’t proliferate. When we perform the ‘Poison B’ breathing exercises, it creates heat in the sinuses and kills the viruses and germs. And the adenoids behind the nose, which are your lymph veins, drain off everything unwanted and you remain healthy.


Stand comfortably with soft knees. Breathe out strongly through your nose accompanied by Dry swimming action (butterfly stroke). Inhale deeply through your nose as you raise your hands from behind, and exhale strongly through your nose as you bring your hands in front. Bend forward as you exhale. Repeat this 10-20 times as per your comfort.

This can also be done either in sitting or standing positions without hand movements. It improves lung and immunity. You get maximum immunity and maximum energy.

Other ways to reduce the risk of mental disorder caused by air pollution

Here’s what you can do to mitigate the risk of developing mental health problems that occur due to air pollution:

  • Eat a balanced diet rich in nutrients helps in strengthening the immune system.
  • Indulge in physical exercise even at home if one is unable to step out, helps in strengthen the body and mind.
  • Sleep well as it helps in the repair and restoration of health.
  • One can also seek therapy from a professional for mental health issues.
  • Stay away from polluted areas.

Select Topics of your interest and let us customize your feed.

  • 186
About the Author

Dr Mickey Mehta is a global leading holistic health guru and corporate life coach. He has an honorary double doctorate in holistic health and life sciences from Medicina Alternativa International. He is an author of two best sellers - The Shoonyam Quotient - The Light of Life and Lose Weight Gain Shape. He is also appointed as the FIT India Movement Champion by the Sports Authority of India. He has curated a special breathing technique called Poison B – Prevention Of Infection Seeding Optimal Nasal Breathing to boost oxygen level and strengthen your lungs. Dr. Mickey has been invited to speak at Harvard University, IIMs, IIT and other coveted universities. He has also held holistic health workshops in the US, Oman, Thailand, Hong Kong, UAE, Turkey and Sri Lanka. He is also a part of the steering wellness committee at the Indian Merchant Chambers. ...Read More

Next Story