No to Secondhand Smoke: Protect Yourself and Your Family

Man holding a lit cigaretteSecondhand smoke is toxic for all people, but it is more harmful to babies, kids, and teens. Exposure causes them to inhale more than 7,000 chemicals. The smoke affects children’s development, contributes to respiratory problems, and causes lung cancer in non-smoking adults. Note that having a smoker in the house increases a non-smoker’s risk of having cancer by up to 30%.

This makes it even more important to protect yourself and your family from the dangers of secondhand smoke. If you are into the smoking habit, it is best to quit for good. With repeated smoking, the smoke lingers in the indoor air, carpet, bedding, and furniture. Look for resources that will help you quit. Know that kicking the habit benefits not just your health and wellbeing, but your family’s, too.

Family health centers in Orem share a few ways you can protect yourself and your loved ones from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke:

  • Always keep your house and vehicle smoke-free. This means making sure that other family members, friends, and visitors never smoke inside the house or car. If a smoker wants to take a puff inside, tell them politely to do it outdoors.
  • Make sure that the babysitters or those looking after your kids and pets are not smokers. Note that while they may not smoke inside the house or around your children, the chemicals and toxins may still be on their clothing or personal items when they come in contact with kids.
  • When going out with the family, find places or activities that are smoke-free. Choose smoke-free restaurants, hotel rooms, and flights. Note that some public areas like recreational facilities prohibit smoking inside, but there are still people who do so near the exit.
  • Educate your children about the harmful effects of smoking and secondhand smoke. Tell them to steer clear from situations or places that expose them to cigarette smoke. Encourage them to have a healthy lifestyle, which of course includes avoiding cigarettes and tobacco products.
  • Let the people you know that you mind when they're smoking near or around you. It is also advisable to stay away from smokers or avoid hanging out with co-workers who smoke during office breaks.

Don’t let secondhand smoke compromise your health and your family’s. Keep these tips in mind to limit the family’s exposure to harmful cigarette smoke.