BLOG 175 3rd HAND SMOKE
We all know the hazards of smoking. The person actually smoking is at risk for many health problems. Second hand smoke can lead to emphysema and lung cancer. But have you heard of 3rd hand smoke (THS)?? This is the less visible type which consists of all the particles and chemicals that land on basically every surface in the smoking area. It can be on the person’s clothes, in their hair, on the floor, and on the furniture.
There are 11 types of chemicals that when left on surfaces, are considered carcinogens. This is all bad because these are cancer causing. Off-gasing is when the chemicals have landed on the surface but then release back into the air as gas. It seems toxins are released everywhere from cigarettes. These toxins can then interact with other chemicals in the environment. These toxins then are either inhaled, ingested (they land on food), or absorbed through the skin. Overtime, these toxins continue to accumulate and become more and more harmful. Let’s say a person smokes in their car, obviously these chemicals just keep piling up.
Children are the biggest victims of THS. Children sit and play on the floor. They put their fingers in their mouths and touch surfaces.
It is important to be adamant about not smoking in your home or vehicle to avoid THS. Studies have shown in a house left unoccupied for 2 months, these chemicals were still present. Acidic cleaners, especially vinegar, can help with some of the cleaning.
So what is the best solution to avoid third hand smoke?? Well, quitting smoking. Nicotine is highly addictive and studies have shown it is nearly as addictive as heroin.
Smokers enjoy the “kick” from inhaling nicotine. The head change from nicotine entering the bloodstream, releases adrenaline and creates a euphoric feeling with dopamine.
Smoking doesn’t just affect the smoker. Besides, who wants the title of being called a “Smoker”?? Habits die hard, but find better addictions to fill the void…. like exercise ? Don’t make your heart work any harder than it already does. At least 3 people are affected by that cigarette: the smoker, the person inhaling the smoke from the exhale, and the person who just gave the smoker a hug. So THS is just another reason to “kick” smoking.