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Third Hand Smoke

Is as bad as second hand? - We all know what second hand smoke is?the smoke you inhale while being in a room full of smokers. But what is THIRD HAND smoke? It turns out it's the invisible (but toxic) gases and particles that cling to smokers' hair, clothing, upholstery and curtains--even when no one is currently smoking in the room--and these remnants are DANGEROUS, especially for children!

In the January 2nd edition of the New York Times, Roni Caryn Rabin quotes pediatrician Jonathan P. Winickoff as saying, "Everyone knows that second-hand smoke is bad, but they don?t know about this. When their kids are out of the house, [parents] might smoke. Or they smoke in the car. Or they strap the kid in the car seat in the back and crack the window and smoke, and they think it?s okay because the second-hand smoke isn't getting to their kids. We needed a term to describe these tobacco toxins that aren't visible."

BBC News quotes Winickoff as saying, "The dangers of third-hand smoke are very real: when you smoke--any place--toxic particulate matter from tobacco smoke gets into your hair and clothing."

Rabin quotes pediatrician Philip Landrigan as saying, "The central message here is that simply closing the kitchen door to take a smoke is not protecting the kids from the effects of that smoke. There are carcinogens in this third-hand smoke, and they are a cancer risk for anybody of any age who comes into contact with them." [When you react badly to a smoky elevator or hotel room], "your nose isn't lying. The stuff is so toxic that your brain is telling you: 'Get away.'"

Art credit: freeimages.co.uk

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