Smoking is by far the most widespread and catastrophic health habit or addiction that has claimed millions of lives and is still on the verge of taking a toll on millions of other people who are standing in the queue of their doors to death. Also, the fact that smoking is very difficult to quit and many of the individuals who quit it resume their previous habit within a span of six months make it the most talked condition that needs quick measures and correct attention.
We all are aware of various detrimental effects of smoking on the health of the individual enjoying its pleasures. But, do you know that passive smoking equally puts you and your family at a wide range of health complications that are at par with that attained through active smoking? And, to everyone’s surprise the main risk group that is susceptible for acquiring the detrimental health effects of passive smoking is your family, relatives, friends, colleagues, etc; which in short means that the people you love and are close to you.
Health facts of passive smoking
Passive smoking is also known as Secondhand Smoke (SHS) or Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) and this side-stream smoke contains more of the harmful chemicals than the mainstream smoke, which contains around 4000 detrimental chemical compounds of which approximately 40 components are found to be acting as carcinogenic (cancer causing) agents. Harmful chemicals present in the side-stream smoke are -
•Carbon monoxide present in the smoke hinders with the oxygen transportation to the vital organs of the body through the medium of blood and is five times of that the smoker inhales.
•The side-stream smoke emitted from the tip of the cigar has been found to contain twice the amounts of tar and nicotine as that inhaled directly by the smoker.
•The side-stream smoke contains 50 times the levels of ammonia and around thrice the concentration of benzopyrene, a carcinogen that is actually present in that mainstream smoke.
•Also, the concentrations of various harmful chemicals such as hydrogen cyanide, formaldehyde, arsenic, vinyl chloride, etc. make it a very concentrated and toxic cocktail gas.
•Exposure to all these and many more chemicals and gases present in secondhand smoke increases your risk of acquiring lung cancer by around 20 - 25%; whereas, the regular exposure to passive smoking such as at public places and also at your house doubles your chances of attaining heart attack in addition to various detrimental health conditions.