7 in 10 Americans report climate change impacting their physical and mental health

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By SWNS Staff
NEWS COPY W/ VIDEO + INFOGRAPHIC
From rising temperatures and heat waves to the impact on mental health, three in four Americans are worried about climate change.
A new survey of 2,000 Americans asked for their thoughts on climate change and its impact on their health and found 74% are actively worried about climate change – while 22% said they don’t believe in it.
The aspects of climate change believers are most worried about include rising temperatures (34%), heatwaves (32%), melting ice caps (30%) and floods (30%). With all of this in mind, those who believe in climate change also shared that they’re worried about its immediate impact on their mental health (73%) and their physical health (71%).
Respondents shared they’re regularly experiencing seasonal allergies (52%), stress and anxiety (52%) and trouble sleeping (50%) – and for those who believe in climate change (just over 1,500 respondents), things seem to be getting worse. Nearly seven in 10 of these respondents even said its already impacting their physical health (68%) and mental health (66%).

Furthermore, of those polled who believe in climate change and are indeed worried about it (just over 1,400 respondents), 70% agreed climate change is a top contributor to their stress and 81% are worried about its impact on future generations.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Flonase, the survey delved into the various health implications Americans are experiencing parallel to their concerns about climate change.
Seven in 10 of those with seasonal allergies specifically noted that, in the last five years, their symptoms have gotten worse – and 84% of these respondents shared that they have no idea why.
Survey results indicate that seasonal allergies are the top health issue respondents experience that are already being impacted by climate change (24%), followed by their stress and anxiety (19%), trouble sleeping (12%) and depression (11%).
“It’s no surprise people are noticing their seasonal allergies getting worse over the years,” said Megan Bruggeman, former meteorologist and Flonase spokesperson, “According to research from PNAS, rising temperatures have extended allergy season by 20 days and increased pollen counts by roughly 20% in the last 30 years.” 
Additionally, 70% of those with seasonal allergies often downplay the severity of their symptoms. In fact, 69% of those who experience things like migraines and seasonal allergies said they often associate these ailments with just having a bad day, rather than a health concern. 
Respondents only see their health concerns worsening alongside climate change over the next 10 years – with seasonal allergies (26%), stress and anxiety (19%) and trouble sleeping (13%) topping the list again.
“Every year, I have more and more patients coming in and asking for my help to fight off the invisible monsters that are pollen and allergy symptoms,” says pediatrician and Flonase spokesperson, Dr. Monica Mehta. “It’s interesting to see that 68% of respondents were aware of the rising temperature’s impact on seasonal allergies. It’s important that my patients understand the effects climate change is having on their everyday health and will continue to have – even if we can’t see it.” 
 
TOP 10 CLIMATE CHANGE WORRIES

Rising temperatures – 34%
Heatwaves – 32%
Melting ice caps – 30%
Floods – 30%
Impact on physical health – 29%
Impact on economy/society – 29%
Wildfires – 29%
Droughts – 29%
Impact on mental health – 28%
Rising sea levels – 27%

 
TOP FORESEEN HEALTH IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN THE NEXT 10 YEARS

Seasonal allergies – 26%
Stress/anxiety – 19%
Trouble sleeping – 13%
Depression – 12%
Migraines – 11%
Asthma – 9%
Eczema – 8%

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