Second Hand Smoke Kills
All of us, smokers and non-smokers alike, are well aware of the fact that second hand smoke kills!
And yet, there are still those individuals amongst us who don’t hesitate to expose the general public as well as their friends, co-workers and loved ones to second-hand smoke: a toxic mixture of fumes which has been linked to a series of horrible health conditions including lung and breast cancer, heart disease, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), and brain tumors.
Anti-Smoking Legislation Message
The good news is that this powerful message and devastating fact, “Second-Hand Smoke Kills!” is the driving force behind an ever increasing number of anti-smoking legislation being enacted around the world.
Currently, in the United States, 26 states have passed smoke-free legislation that ban smoking in all enclosed public places including bars and restaurants. Highly populated states such as California, New Jersey, Washington and New York are amongst the states currently enforcing this ban. These laws illustrate what the informed general public and concerned lawmakers are doing to combat this serious public health threat.
Second Hand Smoke Linked To Depression And Anxiety
However, the power and wealth of tobacco companies has turned the quest to end smoking in public into a long and drawn out struggle. Fortunately, in the June of this year, a group of researchers at the University College of London, gave anti-smoking activists a new weapon with which to further their cause. This team of researchers, which was led by Mark Hamer, found that non-smokers with a high residue of nicotine in their blood are at a 50% greater risk of developing psychological problems such as depression and anxiety.
Previous research has linked smoking to mood disorders. However, this study is significant in the sense that it extends the psychological impact of smoking to non-smokers exposed to second-hand smoke.
The most eye-opening aspect of this study is the finding that for most of us even a slight exposure to second-hand smoke is enough to trigger this psychological effect. According to the study’s findings, “even transient exposure to secondhand smoke is sufficient to have an effect; those with the lowest nicotine levels, equivalent to the amount that might be absorbed during occasional forays to a smoke-filled bar or restaurant, still increased their risk of depressive symptoms and anxiety by 25%”.