Learn about wood smoke and how it affects your health

For some, the smell of wood smoke on a cold, clear night sparks feelings of coziness, the simple life and getting back to the good old ways.

But wood burning – once considered a harmless practice – is a major source of air pollution – and one known to adversely impact health.

Burning wood emits harmful toxins and fine particles into the air that can worsen asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Young children and older people, as well as those living with chronic heart and lung conditions, are particularly vulnerable to its effects.

“Breathing fine particles can cause premature death and send those most at risk to the emergency room,” said Dr. Menn Biagtan, VP Health Education for the BC Lung Association. “Wood smoke particles are so small, they can bypass the airway defenses and enter directly into the lungs and bloodstream, and can cause inflammation that can lead to worsening of underlying lung and heart conditions.”

Wood smoke is a public health concern. To address concerns and issues around wood smoke, the BC Lung Association – through the Campbell River Better Breathers’ Club – is hosting a public educational event. If you wish to attend, RSVP Sharon Korol, event organizer and local BC Lung Association Volunteer Director. “Wood smoke and how it affects your health” takes place on Wednesday, Nov. 28, from 12:30-2 p.m. at the Sportsplex, 1800 South Alder Street.

RSVP to Sharon Korol, Event Organizer & Campbell River Volunteer Lung Association Director at sharonkorol@telus.net or alternatively call the BC Lung Association office toll free at 1.800.665.5864.