EXCLUSIVE: Diwali 2021: Expert lists ways on how to stay safe and enjoy the festival
What comes to your mind when we say Delhi and November? Ice cream at India Gate late at night while the breeze gives you sweet chills, and the bright lights welcoming you to the Capital? Or the dark clouds and a thick layer of pollution gripping the city, as if it’s nothing but a scene freshly brewed out of an apocalyptic Zombie movie? Of, course, it’s the latter.
November, often, turns bad for the residents of the Capital who yearn for fresh air, at least, for a month or so. The reasons, of course, are multiple. Winters, stubble burning, and firecrackers, often take the blame during this time. But there is, of course, more. But that’s a different topic altogether.
However, when COVID has already taken a toll on our health and has affected the lungs, things might be extremely difficult for people this year if the pollution level rises to an alarming extent.
In such a case, you must be wondering what to do, if leaving the Capital for Diwali vacation is not an option for you. Dr Ankit Singhal, Pulmonologist, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute, tells you what can be done.
“One, avoid outdoor movement or limit outdoor movement. Two, put an air purifier in your house if have elderly/ people with respiratory disease. Three, use a face mask whenever you go outside. Four, stop morning walk as pollutants levels are high at that time. Five, continue your daily schedule of exercise. Six, eat a good nutritious, high protein diet rich in antioxidants and vitamins. Seven, keep your body hydrated. Eight, take your medicines regularly. Nine, avoid construction work/paint in the house. Ten, consult your doctor regularly in case of breathing issues,” advises Singhal.
With winters settling in and the increase in pollution, Singhal says, people may suffer from irritation and inflammation of airways, sinuses and eyes, which lead to cough, expectoration, wheezing, breathlessness, irritation in the eye and throat. Keep in touch with your doctor if you suffer from any of these.
“To counter this, long and dedicated planning is required round the year,” Singhal says.
He lists some measures to combat pollution:
Avoid firecrackers not on Diwali but round the year as their use leads to rising in pollutants levels by 100 times.
Use diyas over electric lights.
Use indoor air purifiers.
Keep plants in the house such as tulsi.
Anti-dust campaign must be there at the construction site.
Use of carpooling should be promoted.
Encouragement of solar power must be there.
Burning of waste in open should be stopped.
Implementation of odd-even rule as needed throughout the year.
Say no to plastic bags.
Recycle and reuse resources.