Second Hand Smoke And Children

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Children today are facing a higher risk from tobacco smoke apart from the teenagers and young adults who are both active and passive smokers. Children are facing more dangers than adults as they are exposed to second hand smoke, also known as passive smoke or environmental tobacco smoke (ETS). Children face great health hazards as at young age they are in the developing stage and also their breathing rate is faster than the adults.

A young adult generally breathes 15 to 16 times a minute while a child breathes more than that. A child up to the age of 5 breathes more than 20 times per minute and that can increase to 60 times per minute. As the breathing is more, they inhale more air filled with tobacco smoke. As a result the lungs of the children receive a greater percentage of inhaled toxins than those of the adults.

The different effects of smoking on the health of the children are as follows:

1) Babies born to a mother who smokes during pregnancy are more susceptible to be born underweight than to a mother who does not smoke.

2) Babies whose mothers smoke are more likely to suffer from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Fetuses exposed to the chemicals of the tobacco smoke are at an increased risk of SIDS.

3) Babies whose mothers smoke are at increased risk of learning disabilities and may suffer from cerebral palsy.

4) The condition of the children who suffer from asthma have their condition worsened by second hand smoke. Secondhand smoke may also be the cause of a great number of new asthma cases every year.

5) Exposure to secondhand smoke may also be the cause of bronchitis or pneumonia every year. In the US alone, almost 300,000 people suffer from these two diseases every year.

6) Cigarette smoke inhaled by a person is responsible for middle ear infections. This can cause hearing loss among children.

7) Children who are exposed to tobacco smoke have detectable levels of cotanine in their bloodstream.

8) Children are also more susceptible to suffer from respiratory heart diseases from second hand smoke.

The worst thing about all this is that children usually do not have control over their surroundings. Children exposed to extremely smoky condition for an hour inhale enough toxic materials which is equal to smoking 10 cigarettes. You should keep it in mind that children depend on you for healthy air. So, just think before you burn that cigarette to ashes.