Secondhand smoke poses several health issues. Even if one does not smoke, inhaling the smoke of others can be detrimental to the health as well. The smoke is responsible for causing death from lung cancer and heart diseases among non-smoking adults.
Secondhand smoke can be harmful to the health of children since their lungs are still developing. Adults who smoke around children or exposed to secondhand smoke in other areas are at risk. Those whose parents smoke outside are still exposed to the chemicals. The only way to eliminate exposure is to quit entirely.
Close look on secondhand smoke
Secondhand smoke is the smoke breathed out and comes from the tip of burning pipes, cigarettes and cigars. It contains around 4000 chemicals and most are highly dangerous and known to cause cancer.
Risks to the health of children
Infants face a higher risk for SIDS if exposed. Children are also at high risk for serious health issues or existing ones become worse. Those who are exposed are at higher risk for the following:
- Coughs and colds
- Ear infections
- Tooth decay
- Respiratory issues such as pneumonia and bronchitis
What are the long-term effects?
- Lung cancer
- Poor development of the lungs
- Heart disease
How to create a smoke-free environment
- Setting an example – for those who smoke, it is best to stop. If children see their parents smoking, they might smoke as well.
- Remove children from areas where smoking is allowed. The chemicals from the smoke can be found on surfaces in areas after a smoking session.
- Make sure that the house is smoke-free. Until one quits, avoid smoking inside the house and do not smoke anywhere close to children even if outside.
- The vehicles must be smoke free. Avoid smoking inside the car.
For those who smoke, an essential step to do is to stop smoking. Remember that quitting is the best way to prevent children from being exposed to the smoke.