Protect your Family
• Make your home and car smoke free.
• Family, friends or visitors should never smoke inside your home or car.
• Keep yourself and your children away from places where smoking is allowed.
• If you smoke, smoke only outside.
• Ask your doctor for ways to help you stop smoking (EPA, 2011)
Facts about Environmental Tobacco Smoke
Infants and toddlers have tiny bodies, tiny lungs, and breathe rapidly. All of these things increase how smoke can affect them. "The EPA estimates that passive smoking is responsible for between 150,000 and 300,000 lower respiratory tract infections in infants and children less than 18 months of age annually, resulting in between 7,500 and 15,000 hospitalizations each year.
Sinus problems caused by ETS can lead to fluid in the middle ear, which can then lead to ear infections, doctor’s visits, operations and childhood hearing loss. Exposure to environmental smoke increases kids’ risk later in life of lung cancer, heart disease, and cataracts of the eyes.
Kids with asthma need clean air to breathe. More than 40% of children who visit the emergency room for severe asthma attacks live with smokers. They can stay healthier if the air around them doesn’t increase their risk for asthma attacks. Secondhand smoke can trigger asthma attacks.
Researchers in one study estimate that ETS exposure increases the risk of crisis by 90% among children with sickle cell disease. (UMHS, 2011)
Tips for parents and care givers on how to protect infants from ETS.
If you smoke, don’t smoke around your children.
Don’t let other people smoke around your kids.
Avoid bringing your kids to places where people smoke. Make sure daycare centers are smoke free.
Take the smoke-free homes pledge!(UMHS, 2011)