Passive Smoking

Passive smoking is secondhand smoke which can be dangerous especially for children. When you smoke a cigarette most of the smoke does not actually go into your lungs, it goes into the air around you where then anybody nearby can breathe it in. Secondhand smoke is the smoke that you exhale plus the smoke that is created by the lit end of your cigarette. It isn’t just unpleasant for people to breathe in the secondhand smoke, it can actually damage their health as well.

Dangers of passive smoking:

People who breathe in secondhand smoke regularly are more likely to get the same diseases as smokers which include lung cancer and heart disease. Woman who are pregnant and are exposed to secondhand smoke are more prone to premature birth and their baby can be more at risk of low birthweight and cot death. If children live in a house with smokers then they are at higher risk of breathing problems such as asthma and allergies. If you thought smoking didn’t harm others, then you should now.

Most secondhand smoke is colourless and odourless, so however careful you may be then it can still be there for people to breathe in the poisons. Opening windows and doors if you are smoking inside doesn’t help other people as smoke can linger in the air for 2 to 3 hours after you have even finished the cigarette. Also even if you do limit it to one room in a house it can still travel throughout your house and whoever is in the house can inhale it. Children are particularly vulnerable to secondhand smoke and can develop a range of problems, especially if you are in a car. Since October 2015 it has been illegal to smoke in a private car with a person aged under 18 years old.

How to protect against passive smoking:

The only way to protect people from secondhand smoke is to keep their surroundings smoke free, the best way to do that is to quit smoking completely. However if you are not ready to quit then make sure you make every effort to keep the smoke away from other people, so be sure not to smoke indoors or in a car. If you have any visitors come to your house, then it is always best to ask them to smoke outside. If you need support or advice on stopping smoking, then Yorkshire Smokefree has a phoneline open that you can talk to. You can call them on 08006120011 or 03306601166 or visit their website. https://yorkshiresmokefree.nhs.uk/

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