Health TrendsMaternal and Child Health

Living Near Oil and Gas Wells Linked to Low Birth Weight in Infants

A recent study suggests that residing near oil and gas wells may put pregnant women at risk of having low birth weight babies.

The researchers analyzed almost 3 million births to mothers living within 10 kilometers of at least one oil and gas well between 2006 and 2015. It included people in both rural and urban areas and people living close to active and inactive oil wells.

The study revealed that in rural areas, 4 out of 10 pregnant women who lived within 1 kilometer of the most active wells will have a low-birth baby, and 2 out of 10 will have babies that were small for their gestational age compared to people living far away from those sites.

Furthermore, in urban areas, people living near oil and gas sites had a slightly lower risk of having small for gestational age babies than those who lived in rural areas.

Environmental hazards that could potentially impact the health of growing babies such as air, food, and water pollutants were some of the possible culprits proposed by the researchers.

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