Dangers Of Secondhand Smoke
Not many really know the meaning of ‘second hand smoke’ among us and what’s worse is that they don’t even know the Effects of Second Hand Smoke!
You may not be a smoker, but just inhaling the smoke that comes out of a cigarette or any tobacco product could be hazardous for you. There might be a person who’s smoking standing right next to you, and without knowing, it is highly probable that you are inhaling the air that he has let out, the one containing the smoke from his cigar. Isn’t this just enough?
Smoking has been banned in public areas for this reason; so that the people around wouldn’t fall into trouble because of the active smokers.
Measurement of Second Hand Smoke
Second hand smoke, like first-hand smoke, involves the chemicals contained in a cigarette; namely nicotine, cotinine. These chemicals could be tested for in a nonsmoker’s blood, urine or saliva. Usually, these chemicals are found in nonsmokers’ bodies.
Chemicals In Second Hand Smoke
There are around 7000 identified chemicals in second hand smoke out of which at least 250 have been confirmed to be harmful. Out of these, at least 69 are known to be cancer causing.
Effects Of Second Hand Smoke
While the effects of second hand smoking are not as severe as first-hand smoking, there is still many illnesses that a person can undergo. The effects of second hand smoke can be seen in adults and in children. In fact, it is mostly found in children due to their still developing body functionalities.
- Heart Disease
- Lung Cancer
- Ear Infections
- Severe and frequent asthma attacks
- Respiratory Infections
- Greater risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
Thus, from the above studies, we can clearly say that second hand smoking has been the primitive reason behind banning public smoking. Choosing to destroy your own health is completely your choice. But, choosing to destroy another’s health with your habits is unacceptable.
Steps Taken By The Indian Government
The Indian Government has banned public smoking since 2nd October 2008 under the Prohibition of Smoking in Public Places Rules, 2008 and COTPA. Places where smoking has been restricted include auditoriums, cinemas, hospitals, public transport (aircraft, buses, trains, metros, monorails, taxis) and their related facilities (airports, bus stands/stations, railway stations), restaurants, hotels, bars, pubs, amusement centers, offices (government and private), libraries, courts, post offices, markets, shopping malls, canteens, refreshment rooms, banquet halls, discotheques, coffee houses, educational institutions and parks.
Also, on every packet of cigarette, there are lines ‘Smoking Kills||Tobacco Causes Cancer’ printed, as a warning.
Other Reasons Why Smoking Has Been Banned In Public Areas
1. Litter Reduction
A lot of litter is generated by the remnants of cigarettes after they have burnt. Hence, prohibiting public smoking would prevent the accumulation of this waste.
2. Lingering Smell
It is not an unknown fact that the stench of cigarette lasts long and is also disgusting to those who don’t smoke. That is what happens in restaurants due to smoking. Hence, prevention of smoking in public areas would help remove this stench, thereby not polluting the place.
3. Third Hand Smoke
Third-hand smoke refers to the small particles of nicotine that may remain on the clothes and in the air. It may seem like just an off-smell to you, but this is the actual effects of third-hand smoke.
Therefore, the next time you decide to light a cigarette or, decide to encourage your friend to do so around you, think twice about the safety of those around you, now that you know the effects of secondhand smoke!