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I asked this in Medical: I wonder specifically the effects on the brain of chronic low-level exposure to carbon monoxide due to indoor use of gas flames for lighting and wood/coal fires for heat, not to mention particulates from such flames. We hear of the Flynn Effect (a very significant increase in performance on IQ tests) which I have read is attributed to nutrition but perhaps people have thoughts about indoor heating/lighting by local combustion's contribution to nervous system issues.

closed as off-topic by Pieter Geerkens, Jos, Danila Smirnov, Brasidas, José Carlos Santos Jan 11 at 6:58

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  • "Questions on social sciences other than History are off-topic here, unless they also involve history in some fashion. While ethics, archaeology, etc. are all connected to history, each field has their own experts who are better equipped to answer such questions." – Pieter Geerkens, Jos, Danila Smirnov, Brasidas, José Carlos Santos
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    This question is not about history in any meaningful way. Any history of past knowledge pr belief about such toxins is irrelevant to present knowledge in the context of the question posed. – Pieter Geerkens Jan 11 at 2:16
  • The cumulative effect of exposure to small amounts of carbon monoxide are unknown: ephtracking.cdc.gov/showCoRisk.action – Peter Diehr Jan 11 at 2:57
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    @PeterDiehr: There is some evidence of chronic exposure being dangerous; moreover, it is not clear to me that fires and gaslights indeed produce small amounts of CO and particulates -- perhaps many people who lived in homes thus heated/lit were occasionally exposed to large amounts of CO. Coal fires also produce mercury. – releseabe Jan 11 at 3:32

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