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Do you live in a hot region? Be careful: according to a new Canadian study, high temperatures are harmful to vision.

Global warming is (also) bad for your health. Indeed: the global rise in temperatures promotes the spread of certain infectious diseases (such as Nile fever or malaria), increases the risk of hyperthermia and heat stroke (especially in summer) and increases the cardiovascular risk (as well as respiratory) of the most vulnerable populations.

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But that’s not all: according to a new study conducted by the University of Toronto (in Canada), living in a hot region would also increase the risk of visual impairment, especially among seniors.

A link with air pollution?

To reach this conclusion, Canadian researchers studied medical data on nearly 1.7 million Americans aged 65 and over. These figures have been correlated with meteorological readings.

What did they discover? Compared to the inhabitants of the coolest regions (where the temperature was below 10°C on average for the year), the inhabitants of regions where the average annual temperature was between 10°C and 12.7°C had a +14% increased risk of blindness. This risk was increased by +24% (again compared to inhabitants of “cold” regions) for people living in regions where the average temperature throughout the year was between 12.7°C and 15.4°C.

According to the scientists, the high temperatures particularly affected the vision of men between the ages of 65 and 79.

How to explain this phenomenon ? If the researchers do not provide a precise explanation, they do however have hypotheses: the vision of people living in a “hot” region could thus be altered by atmospheric pollution or by excessive exposure to UV rays.

Source : Ophthalmic Epidemiology

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