13.Role of Medical Geology in Indian Society
Om Prakash Sahu, Pitambra Sahu and Pradeep Kumar Jain
Abstract: Medical Geology is a broad and complex subject which requires inter-disciplinary contributions from several different scientific fields. The importance of medical geology is multiple types in our society. Medical geology brings together geoscientists and medical/public health researchers to address health problems caused or exacerbated by geological materials; ultimately, it is only with multidisciplinary collaborations that interventions can be devised to reduce morbidity and mortality from such problems. Medical geology aims to understand how natural geological factors, such as, natural occurring elements (As, F, Cd, Pb, Hg, Co, Cu, Ni, U etc.) are affecting directly or indirectly Human and Animal health. Rocks are the source of most chemical elements found on the earth. Many elements in the right quantities are essential for plant, animal, and human health and have limited biological function. Generally, these elements are toxic in nature and may cause various health hazards in society. Most of these elements enter the human body via food and water in the diet and through the air that we breathe. The links between geology, environment and health are particularly important for subsistence populations that are heavily dependent on the local geology and environment for their food supply. Infectious diseases in humans are also dramatically affected by the geological environment, albeit indirectly. Geological forces shape the environments in which microbes thrive, sometimes creating opportunities for the emergence of infectious diseases as major public health problems. In the present paper an attempt has been made to describe general importance of medical geology for our society. Keywords: Medical geology, Environment and Society.