Flooding is devastating in every way; it affects infrastructure and property destruction, causing death and health-related consequences. As flooding becomes more frequent for more people living in the warming climate, we look at the impact on the human body. Flooding is the most frequent natural catastrophe in the world, affecting more than two billion people between 1998 and 2017 and making up 44% of all disasters worldwide. As climate change makes the globe more susceptible to extreme weather conditions and extreme weather events, more people are likely to suffer from floods and their devastation with serious health implications.
What can a flood do to your health?
The health effects of natural disasters like flooding are complicated and escalating and could impact any individual or population. Floods can have direct and long-term effects on the health of people, both directly as well as indirectly. Additionally, the health of those who have suffered flooding can be affected. Responders to disasters, health experts, crucial service providers, and property restoration experts like PuroClean of the Chagrin Valley could all be affected when natural disasters like flooding strike; a lot of focus is given to the effects on the economy, property damage, and human casualties. But, in many ways, these issues overlap with health issues.
The impact of flooding on health care can be severe because of damaged infrastructure, the loss of health professionals, and an absence of access to medical care, which could delay care or treatment for those in need. The financial consequences or loss of property and livelihoods that floods cause could lead to financial instability and affect people’s mental health, as well as the sadness of losing loved family members. Here is a list of the most common health consequences associated with flooding.
In floods, illnesses, and outbreaks can be significant health risks. They can manifest as water-borne illnesses resulting from drinking or coming in contact with contaminated water. Diarrhea, cholera and typhoid fever, and leptospirosis are a few examples. It could also be a vector-borne disease transmitted by an intermediate species carrying the disease pathogen, like mosquitoes. Dengue malaria and dengue fever are two diseases transmitted by vectors caused by floods. When floodwaters recede, the stagnant water that remains in the gardens, areas of the house, or even on farm areas can be an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes, resulting in illnesses like dengue or malaria. This is why experts from a water damage restoration in Cleveland, OH are very much needed to avoid these problems.
Mental health problems, which may arise later, often go unnoticed and are not studied as much as the immediate health consequences of flooding. It is recognized that the trauma of dealing with the aftermath of a flood may affect people for a long time after the event, often for a long time. Depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) psychosis, as well as insomnia, are typical mental health problems that can arise after flooding. Cleaning up, recovering, and reconstructing can be difficult, particularly if the government or the private sector does not properly manage it.
While evidence suggests; otherwise, malnutrition or undernutrition is a different health issue that may result from flooding catastrophes. Flood victims are reported to eat less after or during flooding and are often unable to access regular food sources. Flooding can also cause significant disruption to the food system, including agriculture. It can affect the amount and quality of food available, leading to food insecurity and inadequate nutrition.
Warmer temperatures can cause more precipitation, which can trigger extreme weather events and lead to flooding. The ability to adapt is crucial in dealing with the health consequences of flooding as well as mitigation efforts like emission reductions. The health effects of flooding will only get worse unless the world takes quick and decisive action to combat climate change.