CHICO, Calif. - Smoke has inundated our region due to several wildfires continually pumping out smoke into the atmosphere, but with smoke, comes dangerous air quality.
More than half of fire-related deaths are due to smoke inhalation.
Breathing in smoke can cause a whole host of problems, and exacerbate existing conditions such as asthma or COPD.
Some symptoms of smoke inhalation include chest or abdominal pain, eye irritation or blurred vision, coughing or hoarseness, shortness of breath or fainting, and headaches.
If you notice these symptoms, you should go to the emergency room or visit a doctor immediately, as smoke inhalation can be deadly.
"This is just particulate matter from the burned trees suspended in the air that you inhale and this is irritant to the lining of your airways lungs, your trachea, your bronchioles and they overwhelm our defense mechanisms" -Harpartap Sandhu, Emergency Room Physician at Enloe Hospital.
The air quality in Chico right now is between 150 and 200 parts per million (ppm).
There are no long term health issues that can come from this unless you breathe this continually for a very long time. This could lead you to develop COPD, just as if you were a smoker.
Stay on the safe side. Keep your outdoor activities and especially your outdoor workouts, indoors for now.
An air quiality advisory is still in effect for most of our region.