In AAFA's Asthma Capitals Report, we looked at eight risk factors that can affect asthma rates: poverty, lack of health insurance, poor air quality, pollen counts, long-term control medicine use, quick-relief medicine use, smoking laws and access to specialists.
According to the CDC, smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S.1 Smoking is not just harmful to the person doing the smoking. It is also harmful to those nearby who inhale secondhand smoke. Thirdhand smoke can also hurt those who come in contact with it. Many of the chemicals and substances in secondhand and thirdhand smoke can irritate the lungs and airways.
Secondhand smoke refers to smoke that is released in the air when a smoker exhales.
Thirdhand smoke is residue from tobacco smoke. When a cigarette is smoked, chemicals in the smoke stick to surfaces and dust for months after the smoke is gone. The chemicals in the residue react to other pollutants in the air, like ozone, to create harmful particles you can easily inhale.2
Many state and local lawmakers have passed laws that ban smoking in some places. These may include workplaces, restaurants, hotels, parks and transit systems. You can research your state or county laws.
1. Fast Facts and Fact Sheets | Smoking & Tobacco Use | CDC. (n.d.). Retrieved April 26, 2019, from https://www.cdc.gov/ tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/index.htm?s_cid=osh-stu-home-spotlight-001
2. Emerging Evidence and Arguments for a Multidisciplinary Research Agenda. Environmental Health Perspectives, 119(9), 1218–1226. Retrieved March 27, 2019, from https://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/doi/pdf/10.1289/ehp.1103500