Environmental tobacco smoke is unhealthy for you and those around you. This is the EcoMinute and I’m Angela Hahn. Environmental tobacco smoke, or second hand smoke is classified as a carcinogen under EPA guidelines and can cause lung cancer in adults who do not smoke resulting in nearly 3,000 yearly lung cancer deaths in nonsmokers.
Exposure to environmental tobacco smoke has also been shown to increase the risk of heart disease. It has an immediate negative effect on the cardiovascular system by increasing the risk of blood clots, heart attacks, and strokes. Environmental tobacco smoke poses significant risk to children. Secondhand smoke exposure may cause asthma in children and increases the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in babies. Small children may develop pneumonia, bronchitis, or ear infections when exposed.
The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones is to quit and to promote cessation in those around you. The West Florida Area Health Education Center has resources to assist you in doing this. For more information call 1-877-678-6766 or go to www.tobaccofreeflorida.com or WUWF.org.