“Passive smoking risk” to babies from dust in smokers’ homes

Parents who go outside to smoke are not fully protecting their
children from the harmful effects of tobacco smoke, according to a
new study.

Levels of second-hand tobacco contaminants in the dust, air and
surface samples from homes where smokers attempted to protect their
children by smoking outdoors were up to seven times as high as
those in homes whose owners did not smoke themselves, although much
lower than in the homes of smokers who regularly smoked

Household dust is an important and hidden source of
“passive smoking” for young children, according to a
study published in the medical Journal Tobacco Control.

Over several weeks, this can expose them to levels of
contaminants from second hand tobacco smoke that are “equivalent to
several hours of active adult smoking.”

Infants are at particular risk, comment the authors, because
during the first year of life, they spend a great deal of time
indoors and are close to contaminated sources. Although the
absolute levels of exposure are low, compared with active adult
smoking, over the course of weeks, the exposure is cumulative, say
the authors.


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