I was reading this week's Time Magazine when I came across an interesting article about thirdhand smoke. Unlike secondhand smoke, which is the toxins nonsmokers inhale when someone is smoking nearby, thirdhand smoke can remain long after the cigarette has been finished. Research has shown that the harmful compounds in tobacco residue that get embedded in clothing, hair, furniture and almost any other exposed surface may still be active enough to cause health problems, especially sudden infant death syndrome as well as asthma, allergies, and other respiratory ailments in young children. Nicotine levels are relatively constant in a room where a smoker lights up regularly. This is because the residue does not dissipate along with the smoke. It is also proven through the Berkeley National Laboratory that children living in apartment buildings who have smoking neighbors but no smokers in their own unit have double the level of cotinine (a remnant of metabolized nicotine) in their blood compared with children living in single family homes without smokers. The current evidence surrounding thirdhand smoke should be enough to convince parents that no level of cigarette smoke exposure is safe for their children, let alone themselves. If you are still unsure if thirdhand smoke is actually that dangerous to your health, "here's a bit of advice for the families of the more than 22 million children in the U.S. who are exposed to smoke in the home: it's not enough to have smokers stand outside on the porch---unless they're planning to take a shower and change their clothes before they rejoin the party in the living room".
Don't forget that today is ELECTION DAY! You still have time to get out to the polls and HAVE YOUR VOICE HEARD!